Cardinal George Pell, 77, was sentenced to six years in prison March 13, just over two weeks after a Melbourne court allowed the publication of news that he had been found guilty of sexually abusing two boys.
Immigrant advocates have become increasingly concerned about the welfare of migrant children in detention, including reports the federal government has received thousands of complaints of sexual abuse of these minors.
An Australian court found Cardinal George Pell guilty on five charges related to the sexual abuse of two 13-year-old boys; sentencing is expected in early March, but the cardinal’s lawyer already has announced plans to appeal the conviction.
The Vatican announced the decision Feb. 16, saying, Theodore E. McCarrick, was found guilty of “solicitation in the sacrament of confession and sins against the Sixth Commandment with minors and with adults, with the aggravating factor of the abuse of power.”
Days after the pope acknowledged abuse of nuns and sisters by priests and bishops, the largest U.S. organization of women religious thanked the pontiff for shedding “light on a reality that has been largely hidden from the public,” but the group also called for measures to address the issue.
Nationally, seminary formation has come under scrutiny following allegations that former-Cardinal Theodore McCarrick sexually harassed seminarians, and that sexual misconduct has been tolerated in some seminaries.