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Archived Stop Press Items
Following the resignation on 13/12/02
of Cardinal Law, Archbishop of Boston and top-ranking US Catholic, due to the
continuing emergence of documentation proving the diocese's cover-up of sexual
abuse claims over decades:
8/4/03 Boston Globe wins Pulitzer prize for its coverage of the events
15/5/03 Poll of Boston-area Catholics shows most believe Law should be prosecuted
For a list of other bishops around the world who have resigned due to clergy sexual abuse issues, see http://www.boston.com/news/daily/13/previous_resignations.htm
15th May 2003 - The Australian Senate demands the resignation or sacking of the Governor-General because of mishandling of clergy abuse complaints whilst Archbishop of Brisbane. See news story
PEPPA (Promotion of Ethical Practice to Prevent Abuse) Seminar "Opening our hearts and minds to people who have experienced abuse". Sydney, June 18th 2003, 6:30-8:00pm. More details here.
1st June 2004: The report of the independent inquiry into abuse in the Anglican Diocese of Adelaide was released.
11th June 2004: Adelaide's Anglican Archbishop, Ian George, quit today in the wake of the clergy sex abuse report mentioned above, and the diocesan Professional Standards Committee's request for him to stand aside. He joins a growing number (more than 20 since 1990) of bishops and archbishops around the world who have stood down in the wake of sex scandals in their dioceses.
28th July 2004: It has been announced that Donald Shearman, the Anglican bishop whose sexual predation of a teenage girl eventually led to the resignation of Governor-General Peter Hollingworth, will be defrocked in a formal ceremony on August 25th this year. This is believed to be the first ever defrocking of a bishop for sexual offences.
August 2004: The Sydney Diocese of the Anglican Church has implemented a "Care and Assistance Package", allowing victims of abuse within the diocese to claim compensation without going through the courts. While I applaud the move, there are still some significant concerns with the procedure and structure of it.
April 2012: Victoria announces church abuse inquiry. See here, and here for further updates.
November 2012: Prime Minister Julia Gillard has announced a federal Royal Commission into child sexual abuse in churches and church-run institutions. For authoritative information and contact details for the Commission see http://www.sexualassault.nsw.gov.au/VOSA/sexual_assault.html
November 2012: NSW Premier Barry O'Farrell has announced a special commission of inquiry into the way police handled investigations into Catholic Church abuse cases in the Hunter Valley and whether church hierarchy interfered in investigations. See, among others, this.
January 2013: The official website of the federal Royal Commission is http://www.childabuseroyalcommission.gov.au/. Contact details, terms of reference, the names and bios of the Commissioners, documents tendered, and the final report are all there.
Archbishop Ian George, former archbishop Peter Hollingworth, and bishop Donald Shearman have all been removed or resigned from office in the wake of sexual abuse scandals. For a list of nearly 30 bishops, archbishops and cardinals around the world who share the same dubious claim to fame, see here.
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