SYDNEY // Vatican finance chief Cardinal George Pell admitted on Monday the Catholic Church “mucked up” in dealing with paedophile priests and vowed he would not “defend the indefensible” before an Australian inquiry.
Cardinal Pell gave evidence from a hotel in Rome via video-link to the Royal Commission into institutional responses to child sexual abuse in Sydney. He did not appear in person as he has a heart condition.
The inquiry is currently focused on the Victorian state town of Ballarat, where Cardinal Pell grew up and worked, and how the church dealt with complaints – many dating back to the 1970s – against the Catholic clergy.
Cardinal Pell, who rose to be the top Catholic official in Australia, said the church historically made grave errors in not properly addressing the issue and was now working to remedy them.
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