August 24 | comments icon 0 COMMENTS     print icon print

20-Bishop Geoffrey Robinson

Australian bishop faults Papal leadership on clerical abuse

The retired auxiliary bishop of Sydney has called on Pope Francis to show more leadership when dealing with historical child abuse within the Catholic Church.

Bishop Emeritus Geoffrey Robinson (above) is giving evidence today before the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse in Sydney. He feels that the Vatican did not understand the scale of the problem and that St John Paul II ‘handled abuse poorly’ during his Papacy from 1978 to 2005.

The bishop told the commission of his ideal scenario where John Paul II had come to the microphone in St Peter’s Square in 1997 and told the crowd he had received reports of widespread sexual abuse of minors by priests and religious which had shocked him to the core.

“A real leadership like that from the Pope would have been marvellous, and from subsequent popes, now we still don’t have that kind of leadership, not even from Francis,” Bishop Robinson said. “It didn’t fit into his image of Church, and he couldn’t deal with it. Instead, what we got from him was silence. And so bishops were loyal to the silence.”

The former bishop is an expert in canon law and a vocal critic of his Church’s handling of the crisis who calls for ‘profound and enduring change’ in relation to their treatment of victims of abuse.

Though he criticised Pope Francis for his lack of leadership on these subjects, Bishop Robinson admits the current Holy Father could raise the subject like he has on homosexuality and Catholic remarriage.

“There are very powerful people opposing him ‘tooth and nail’ so there was wisdom in him taking one step at a time,” he added.

 

 

Leave a Reply

latest news

Church compares surrogacy to human trafficking

October 18th, 2019 | comments icon 0 COMMENTS

The Catholic Church has questioned whether surrogacy is ‘any better...


International role for Glasgow Knight of St Columba

October 18th, 2019 | comments icon 0 COMMENTS

A Glasgow man has been elected the first Scottish president...


Nigerian order to take reigns at Edinburgh city centre parish

October 18th, 2019 | comments icon 0 COMMENTS

Missionaries from Africa will take over the running of a...


Bishop hits back after attack on Catholic education

October 18th, 2019 | comments icon 0 COMMENTS

The bishop of Dunkeld Diocese has expressed his support for...




Social media

Latest edition

P1-OCT-18-2019

exclusively in the paper

  • SCIAF recieves £100,000 boost from Scottish Government
  • Priest to give talk on Jesus in the Koran
  • Everyone’s a winner as Trinity High takes on 5K run
  • Setting out a plan for a Catholic Gaelic conference
  • Parish enlists MP’s support over Home Office visa dispute

Previous editions

Previous editions of the Scottish Catholic Observer newspaper are only available to subscribed Members. To download previous editions of the paper, please subscribe.

note: registered members only.

Read the SCO