Disturbing claims over whistleblower priest’s summons to the Vatican in new book.

Colm Holmes from We Are Church has forwarded the following link from The Sydney Morning Herald. It refers to a new book, The Altar Boys by investigative reporter Suzanne Smith, which contains details of Fr Glen Walsh, a Crown witness in the case against Adelaide Archbishop Philip Wilson who was accused of failing to report abuse allegations to police. In 2016 Fr Walsh “was mysteriously summoned to the Vatican before he was due to testify and allegedly quizzed by the Pope about what he was planning to say in court.”


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  1. Mary Vallely says:

    I have to admit that I try not to read these articles and question myself why not? Is it because I don’t want to admit that the level of cruelty and lack of compassion to victims and survivors of clerical sexual abuse extends all the way to the very top or that our man in the Vatican isn’t the wonderfully warm Christ- like human being I want him to be?
    Is it that it is endemic in many clergy, this sense of entitlement that those lower down the hierarchical ladder can be sacrificed with impunity?

    That description of Cardinal Pell holding out his ring for Fr Walsh to kiss is a bit stomach churning. Thank goodness the present encumbent of Ara Coeli does not carry on this ridiculous tradition. I think the last time anyone was seen kissing the ring was way back in Cardinal Conway’s and Cardinal Dalton’s time. Thank God too there was no scandal attached to either man.

    Of course there needs to be an independent investigation! How absolutely tragic that Fr Walsh was in such despair and isolation that he ended his own life. God rest him.

    “Pope Francis must explain why he recalled Father Glen [Walsh], one of more than 400,000 priests from across the world, to the Vatican to answer questions about what his evidence would be in the criminal prosecution of Archbishop Wilson,” Mr Shoebridge said. “
    Yes, of course he must!

    There are a few signs that perhaps the picture isn’t as black as it is painted here, several times the word allegation is used and the interpreter’s words could have been misconstrued. However, we have to ask ourselves, do we gloss over all this as we don’t regard it as important as other issues and if we do, what is that saying to all of us about how people are treated in this Church of ours? We know Francis has his faults but to be so ungenerous and unkind doesn’t fit in with his generally well appreciated public image.

    A question I have been asking myself regularly since lockdown. Am I enabling all this abuse and downright injustice by continuing to support such an institution by my membership? Is it right to ignore abuse?
    Accentuate the positive. Yes. There are a huge number of positives in the RCC but the negatives must neither be ignored nor dismissed. What to do?

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