Archbishop who gave closing homily at Sex Abuse Summit under investigation
Yesterday Archbishop Mark Coleridge of Brisbane, President of the Australian Catholic Bishops’ Conference, spoke out about Cardinal Pell:
The news of Cardinal George Pell’s conviction on historical child sexual abuse charges has shocked many across Australia and around the world, including the Catholic Bishops of Australia.This Archbishop delivered the homily at Mass closing the Meeting on “The Protection of Minors in the Church” pledging to make the Church a safe place for everyone. In that homily, Archbishop Coleridge spoke of the concealment of abuse and said that when this happens, the powerful show themselves not men of heaven, but men of earth.
The Bishops agree that everyone should be equal under the law, and we respect the Australian legal system. The same legal system that delivered the verdict will consider the appeal that the Cardinal’s legal team has lodged. Our hope, at all times, is that through this process, justice will be served.
In the meantime, we pray for all those who have been abused and their loved ones, and we commit ourselves anew to doing everything possible to ensure that the Church is a safe place for all, especially the young and the vulnerable.
Today it emerged that Archbishop Coleridge is being investigated by his former archdiocese over his alleged handling of information on child sex abuse. A spokesman for the Archdiocese of Canberra and Goulburn said an independent investigation was being conducted after the church was made aware of the allegations a few months ago.
So here we have an Archbishop who knew he was under investigation, yet nonetheless, thought it entirely appropriate that he attend the Vatican summit on child sexual abuse.
Coleridge has been at the heart of controversy on a few occasions. Back in October he tweeted he doesn’t ‘want or have’ Jesus as King. He also demonstrated his credentials as a Francis "groupie" by publicly mocking Archbishop Viganò and Cardinal Zen. He also allowed a semi-nude, sexually charged fashion show to take place in one of his archdiocese's churches.
I think we know this man's quality.