Malone inherited 'poisoned chalice'

20130702 news nswenq

Retired Maitland-Newcastle Bishop Michael Malone believed he had inherited 'a poisoned chalice' when he took over the diocese, a NSW inquiry heard, according to the Herald-Sun.

Whistleblower Detective Chief Inspector Peter Fox told Commissioner Margaret that  Bishop Malone used that description when commiserating with the mother of a boy who had been repeatedly sexually assaulted during his teenage years by Fr F, the paper says.

Det Insp Fox said the mother told him in 2002 there was animosity between Bishop Malone and his predecessor Bishop Leo Clarke because Bishop Clarke had not revealed the extent of 'indiscretions' and 'bad decisions' that had taken place in the diocese, possibly for decades.

But the mother felt Bishop Malone was just 'going through the motions' speaking to her, and was not showing genuine pastoral care, Det Insp Fox said.

In other evidence, Counsel assisting the inquiry, Julia Lonergan SC, quizzed Chief Inspector Fox as to why he doubted an 'extraordinary' alleged admission by Fr F that he had owned and subsequently destroyed gay pornography, the Sydney Morning Herald adds.

The policeman has given evidence that he suspected videos and magazines found in a presbytery at Lochinvar in 2003 had belonged to the priest.

Ms Lonergan put it to Chief Inspector Fox that he had no evidence that the material belonged to Fr F. She also suggested Chief Inspector Fox had not kept an open mind when speaking witsecond other priest, and as a result did not believe his admission.

Chief Inspector Fox agreed with both suggestions.

FULL STORIES

Bishop given 'poison chalice': NSW inquiry (Herald Sun)

Child abuse inquiry: Whistleblower's credibility questioned (SMH)

OTHER STORIES

Singapore Catholic Church to probe sex-abuse charges (The West Australian)

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