Calls for Royal Commission into church abuse

Establishing a Royal Commission in Australia in light of a damning report into abuse at Catholic-run institutions in Ireland is an overreaction, a Christian lobby group says.

 

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Australian sex abuse victims have renewed calls for a commission, following the release of a report in Ireland which found abuse is the church is rife.

The long-awaited report, released in Dublin on Wednesday, outlined the terror of rampant sexual abuse, rapes and beatings inflicted on thousands of children over a 60-year period by priests, nuns and lay staff.

Spokesman for advocacy group Broken Rites Dr Wayne Chamley told ABC Radio he is concerned about Irish clergy members who are now residing in Australia.

"We are aware of a number of Irish-ordained priests (who) have been brought before the courts in Australia," he told ABC Radio.

"There needs to be a … Royal Commission … because we believe that the real figures would be revealed." But the Australian Christian Lobby (ACL) said calls for a Royal Commission were an "overreaction". "Churches in Australia have looked at this very diligently in the past few years," ACL managing director Jim Wallace said.

"I hope that has satisfied the need to get rid of this scourge from religious institutions and schools."

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