03 January 2018, The Tablet

The Royal Commission has laid bare the criminal dysfunctionality of the Catholic Church


For all the current hostility toward religion in Western nations right now – some of it entirely justified – the season of Christmas is a hardy annual that keeps on giving to all of us.

Over the last five years, the Australian Royal Commission has laid bare in its end-of-year summaries the systematic, criminal dysfunctionality of the Catholic Church in regard to child sexual abuse and its cover-up, and countless priests wondered whether anyone would turn up for Christmas Mass. I thought that the final report of the Royal Commission, which was released on 15 December, would have a devastating impact on the numbers of people wanting to bring their children to church to celebrate Christmas Mass at the Vigil and on Christmas Day morning.

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