Vatican told whistleblower priest to be a hostile witness: friend

Sydney Morning Herald

August 28, 2020

By Harriet Alexander

Whistleblower priest Father Glen Walsh told his next-door neighbour that the Vatican had instructed him to be a hostile witness when he was called to testify against an Archbishop accused of concealing crimes of sexual abuse.

Neighbour Jamie Hay said he chatted to Father Walsh in October 2017, about 10 days before he took his life and three weeks before the Archbishop’s trial was due to begin. Father Walsh was expecting a visit from a senior member of the clergy, who he planned to take to task over the number of paedophile priests being housed by the Catholic Church.

The conversation turned to his disillusionment with the church over its handling of sexual abuse claims and Father Walsh told Mr Hay that he had met with the Pope about the upcoming trial of Archbishop Philip Wilson, in which he was due to testify for the prosecution.

“He didn’t name anyone in particular, but he said the expectation from Rome was, they didn’t ask him but they said, ‘You will be a hostile witness’,” Mr Hay said. “He was a really devoted servant of the Catholic Church and it was heartbreaking.”

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