The ABC reports…
“A lawyer representing the Catholic Church has been heckled by victims of child sexual abuse and their families on the first day of a public inquiry.
The Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse is examining the “Towards Healing” process established by the Church in 1996.
The process was used to respond to complaints of abuse involving Church personnel.
When the Royal Commission was first announced by the Federal Government, the Catholic Church established the Truth, Justice and Healing Council.
The lawyer representing the Council at the hearing, Peter Gray SC, began his opening remarks by quoting the Gospel of Mark:
“Let the little children come to me; do not stop them; for it is to such of these that the Kingdom of God belongs.”
A group of victims and their relatives in the public gallery began to leave, with one person saying “what a joke”.
Some were seen outside the hearing in tears.
Mr Gray told the hearing the passage showed the “sacred place of children” within the Catholic faith.
“The Catholic Church comes before this Royal Commission acutely aware of its failures in this fundamental part of its mission,” he said…”