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Written by a Broken Rites Australia researcher.

This clergyman commits crimes against children but he opposes having women priests

An "Anglican-Catholic" cover-up: Broken Rites tells the full story of Anglican priest Wilfred Edwin Dennis, who was jailed in 1970 for sexually abusing an altar boy. He continued as an Anglican priest but later left the mainstream Anglican Church to join a breakaway group, called the "Anglican Catholic Church". In April 2010, he was jailed again for assaulting two other boys. In February 2011, after more victims spoke to the police, his jail sentence was extended (updated 2 February 2011).

Anglican case: Reverend James Stirling Murray allegedly molested schoolboys

ANGLICAN case: Broken Rites has researched one of Australia’s most prominent Anglican priests — Father James Stirling Murray — who managed to survive complaints about him committing sex offences on vulnerable boys (posted 2 October 2009).

Christian Brother John F. Coswello in court in 2009-2010

After a Melbourne jury found him guilty on child-sex charges, Christian Brother John Francis Coswello appealed and gained the right to a re-trial. In October 2010, a new jury returned a verdict of not guilty on these charges.

Priest was caught filming naked boys while they showered

Priest admits filming boys in shower: Broken Rites has done research about a Catholic priest, John Charles Houston (born 3 March 1955), who admitted in a New South Wales court that he had filmed boys while they were showering during a surf lifesaving carnival (updated 12 May 2011).

Teacher jailed for offences against children at a Catholic school

Tector: In 1994, Darren John Tector was jailed for sexual offences against boys while he was a teacher at a Catholic primary school (Our Lady of Lourdes) at Seven Hills, near Parramatta, west of Sydney. He was jailed again in 2007 (aged 41) for using the internet and a telephone to procure a child (a 12-year-old boy) for sexual activity (posted 13 March 2009).

A recent cover-up: A church school failed to protect children from abuse

Has the Catholic Church really learned lessons about "child protection"? On 4 October 2010 in Toowoomba (Queensland), a Catholic Church "child protection" officer (Gerard Vincent Byrnes) was jailed for at least eight years for sexually assaulting schoolgirls. The crimes occurred rrather recently, in 2007 and 2008. Despite complaints, the Catholic education system allowed Brynes to continue teaching until the police arrested him. (Article posted 4 October 2010.)

This article is not available

This article is not available

This Christian Brother receives a second jail sentence after more victims come forward

Brother Down: Christian Brother Graeme James Down (alias Brother "David" Down) molested school boys in Western Australia in the 1980s and was jailed in 2007. Then more victims came forward, resulting in more jail in 2008 (posted 11 November 2008).

The Marists promoted this child-abuser to become a headmaster

The Marist Brothers covered up sexual crimes committed by a Brother, according to prosecution documents tabled in the Brisbane Magistrates Court. The Marist Order knew that Brother Gregory Carter was a child-abuser but it kept him in the Order and later allowed him to become a headmaster - in Canberra.

The church promoted this abusive priest to a more senior position

Eames: A Melbourne priest, Father Anthony Eames, was finally convicted after committing offences against young girls for many years (posted 22 September 2008).

Priest re-instated by the diocese

Mackie: Police in Newcastle, New South Wales, began investigating allegations that a Catholic priest (Fr Gerard Mackie) showed an explicit image to seven-year-old children at a government school during a "religious education" lesson (posted 15 September 2008).

A priest is charged with child-sex offences dating back nearly 40 years

On 22 August 2008, New South Wales detectives charged an 81-year-old Catholic priest with a series of child sex offences, dating back almost 40 years. The priest was issued with a summons to appear in Wollongong Local Court on a later date.

The charges include two counts of buggery and 10 counts of indecent assault (that is, indecent touching).

The charges relate to the repeated sexual assault of a former altar boy at a parish in the city of Wollongong. Police allege the offences occurred over a period from 1969 to 1976, commencing when the victim was 10 years old.

Church accepts two complaints about girls being sexually abused by a priest

Donovan: In May 2008 the Catholic Church's Professional Standards Office in New South Wales "accepted the veracity" of two complaints about Father Francis Donovan, a priest of the Redemptorist Fathers religious order. Two women, acting separately, had complained that Fr Frank Donovan molested them when they were young girls in the late 1970s in Maitland (posted 7 June 2008).

Priest pleads guilty to indecent assault of a schoolgirl in northern Victoria

D'Cruz: A Catholic priest, Father Adelrick D'Cruz, 78, pleaded guilty in the Victorian County Court at Shepparton on 22 May 2008 to indecently assaulting a schoolgirl who came to his parish house for help (updated 1 June 2008).

Hospital chaplains can be a health hazard, a woman patient says

Hughes Hospital chaplains can be a health hazard, a woman patient says (29th September 2007)

It is never too late to tell the police, these victims say

Blackfriars School: It is never too late to tell the police, these victims say (last updated 2nd August 2007)

Snowdon's Guilty Secret: Class, Abuse and Hypocrisy in the Catholic Church

Christian Brothers: This article, written for the Broken Rites website by a victim of the Christian Brothers, gives a victim's view of Catholic Church sex-abuse in Australia.

Anglican Cases

Here are some Anglican cases, previously reported in the Broken Rites Newsletter (list not complete). The following are all ordained priests.

Marist Brother Hesford had female victims

In the Melbourne Magistrates Court on 12 December 1997, Marist Brother Francis Hesford pleaded guilty to having indecently assaulted two girls, aged 9 and 12, in the swimming pool at Assumption College boys' boarding school in Kilmore, Vic. He was sentenced to a 12-months good-behaviour bond.

A Female Victim's Recovery

By "MARY", a victim of Marist Brother Francis Hesford at Kilmore, Victoria, at the age of 9 in the 1970s

It is best described as a "shattered windscreen" effect. You notice the initial chip in the windscreen and it really angers you. This is the initial abuse.

This priest died while police were investigating him

The Brisbane Courier Mail (15 October 1998) has exposed the sexual abuse of orphan girls which occurred in the 1950s and '60s at Nazareth House, a Catholic home for the aged, in Wynnum North, Brisbane, conducted by the Sisters of Nazareth. The nuns kept teenage girls at the home as unpaid workers.


The Catholic Church's "Melbourne Response" to sex-abuse complaints

The Catholic Church in Australia has established a Professional Standards Office (also known as "Towards Healing") to handle (or mis-handle) complaints from the church's sex-abuse victims. This system operates throughout Australia (including country areas in Victoria), but it does not cover priests in Melbourne or its suburbs.

Double life: He was a priest in public, but a child-abuser in private

A sexually-abusive priest lived "parallel lives", a judge told Sydney District Court on 7 December 2012, when he sentenced the priest to jail for crimes against children in northern New South Wales, including in the Hunter Valley (posted 15 December 2012).

A Marist Brother is charged with a 1960s child-assault in northern NSW

On 18 March 2015, New South Wales police charged a Marist Brother (John William "Kostka" Chute, now aged 82) regarding an alleged indecent assault at Lismore on the NSW north coast The offence allegedly occurred between 1967 and 1969 when the Brother was in his mid-thirties. The alleged victim was a schoolboy in Year Six. (Article posted 21 March 2015.)

Broken Rites supporting the Royal Commission

For twenty years, from 1993, Broken Rites Australia has been seeking a national Royal Commission of Inquiry to investigate how religious organisations have handled (or mis-handled) allegations of child-sex crimes. At last, in 2013, the federal government has appointed such a Royal Commission. The Royal Commission is an opportunity to expose the concealing of church-related crimes (article updated 16 February 2013).

This article is not available

This article is not available.

The church apologises re this priest at a girls' school

Broken Rites Australia has prompted the Catholic Church to apologise to a Queensland woman who was sexually assaulted by a prominent priest when she was a schoolgirl in the early 1970s. (Article updated 6 July 2007.)

This family warned the church about Fr John Sidney Denham

After the paedophile priest John Sidney Denham was jailed in Australia on 2 July 2010, another family went public and revealed how they warned the Catholic Church authorities about Denham 32 years earlier, in 1978. But the church ignored the 1978 warning and continued to protect Denham until Broken Rites finally exposed him in an article in 2006.

A Catholic bishop faces court on child-abuse charges from 1969

The Catholic Bishop of the Australian Defence Force is involved in court proceedings, charged by police with a child-sex offence dating back to 1969. Bishop Max Davis, now 68, is believed to be the most senior Catholic clergyman (and the first bishop) to be charged by Australian police with a child-sex offence. (Article updated 28 January 2015.)

The church pays compensation for this 40-year-old abuse

The Catholic Church has paid settlement money to two victims of Father Peter Brock in the Maitland-Newcastle diocese, north of Sydney. The two male recipients, who are twin brothers, say that Father Brock began abusing them more than 40 years ago when they were in their early teens. Father Brock eventually gave them a written apology for the abuse.


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