Like in so many other nations, children in Australia have suffered at the hands of men in positions of moral, educational and administrative authority, subjected to systemic sexual, emotional and physical abuse by dark figures in the Roman Catholic church and its hierarchy.
The pattern of abuse is similar, whether it be in schools in Australia, residential institutions for First Nations Child and Family Caring Society of Canada, in parishes across Ireland, or where depraved and criminal minds were able to carry out their dark deeds under the veneer of doing charitable or spiritual work.
The issue of child abuse is something that impacts societies around the world.
In India, for instance, a child is sexually abused every 15 minutes, according to the latest government figures.
The systemic abuse that occurs to young and vulnerable children is a crisis that has yet to be fully addressed. Indeed, there are those still in the corridors of power who would prefer if those who suffered abuse at the hands of priests, simply went away. But the violations, scars and trauma inflicted by the abusers on the young remain and rarely ever go away.
A recent royal commission in Australia into the abuse of children placed in the care of institutions in which the church had control contains a litany of abuses that, in its very own words, “has shaken Australia to its core”.
It needs to be noted that the abuse was not perpetrated by men of faith alone, but also by others as well who used their positions of authority for evil and lustful ends. But unlike most commissions or official inquiries whose findings shock yet whose recommendations go unfulfilled, this time, the government of Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull is determined that it will bring some level of closure to the thousands who had their childhood destroyed and adult years haunted by their abuse.
By the end of the year, Turnbull has solemnly pledged that the government of Australia will issue a formal apology to those victims. The apology will come at the end of the year because Turnbull is determined that the wording of the apology, its sincerity and veracity, will be fully meant and delivered in the correct tone. To ensure this, his officials are working closely with the survivors of this evil moral and criminal epidemic — and the words will be deeply meaningful. Turnbull’s government deserves full credit for its actions.