TJHC submission examines abuse causes

Francis Sullivan

Issues such as compulsory celibacy and clericalism have been identified as contributing to child sexual abuse over more than five decades in the Church, says the Truth Justice and Healing Council (TJHC).

In a media statement released Friday, the Truth Justice and Healing Council said its submission to the royal commission's final public hearing into the Church held last month deals with issues including current Church child protection policies, safety standards, and responses to allegations of child sexual abuse.

The submission also looks at factors that may have contributed to child sexual abuse in the Church and the way in which Church authorities responded.

Francis Sullivan, CEO of the council, said the submission provides insight into several of the key issues which have been examined by the commission over the past four years.

“There are many issues within the Church that the commission has dealt with but most significant of these include compulsory celibacy, clericalism, inadequate training and formation, denial and secrecy and, very significantly, the Church’s culture,” Mr Sullivan said.

“Much of the dysfunction, crime and cover-up of child sexual abuse in the Church, in one way or another, can be linked back to one or more of these issues.

“The royal commission will now use much of the testimony, evidence and submissions from the TJHC and others to understand why clergy and religious abused children on such a massive scale and why the response within the Church was so flawed,” Mr Sullivan said.


TJHC submission to Royal Commission examines causes of child sexual abuse in Catholic Church (TJHC)


Lanigan House media statement (Archdiocese of Canberra and Goulburn)

Cardinal George Pell could turn key witness against Catholic Church (Herald Sun)

The church robbed us of our sons: mothers (The Courier)

Exclusive: How the church forced me to relive my abuse (The Saturday Paper)

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