Campaigners for sex abuse victims have been critical of Pope Francis, who handpicked Pell to oversee the Vatican’s finances despite controversy in Australia over the Cardinal’s handling of sex abuse.
But the decision to commit Pell to trial was welcomed by abuse victims as a vindication of their long struggle for action by the justice system.
“George Pell has been committed to trial and the positive that survivors of abuse can take from this case is that nobody is above the law," said Lisa Flynn, a lawyer from Shine Lawyers who has represented numerous abuse victims.
“To the brave few who came forward with their stories… you made someone answerable to your allegations and I hope that vindicates you from your pain."
Pell has been placed on bail and is due to return to court on Wednesday for a hearing that is likely to set a trial date. He has previously forfeited his passport and is barred from leaving Australia.