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May 28, 2015


  • Gerald Ridsdale admits be abused over 100 children over 30 years
  • George Pell insists he “knew nothing”
  • However whistleblower priest says Pell knew about sex abuse and Ridsdale’s offending

George Pell’s claims that he “knew nothing” about allegations of child sex abuse lie in tatters today with revelations that he personally attended a high-level meeting to discuss Gerald Ridsdale’s sexual misconduct in 1982.


Father Eric Bryant has revealed that concerns over Ridsdale’s “committing homosexual acts” were explicitly discussed in the meeting — which was attended by now Cardinal George Pell — at which it was decided to shift Ridsdale from the parish of Mortlake.

The stunning revelation came as Ridsdale broke his silence over his crimes to the royal commission.


Ridsdale said church authorities knew he was molesting children in the 1960s, but gave him access to more vulnerable youngsters for almost 30 years.

Detailing the meeting of seven priests, Fr Bryant said Ballarat bishop Ronald Mulkearns had opened it by saying: “We’ve got a problem with homosexuality in the diocese.”

“The bishop said Gerald Ridsdale has been reported committing homosexual acts.

“I thought, ‘What have I got myself into?’,” Fr Bryant said.


Cardinal Pell, now one of the Catholic Church’s most senior figures, has repeatedly denied any knowledge of Ridsdale’s crimes until he was charged and jailed in 1993.

Pell reiterated his denials late last week, as minutes emerged of the 1982 College of Consultors meeting were highlighted, detailing how Bishop Mulkearns advised it was “necessary’’ to move Ridsdale from Mortlake.

Plans for Ridsdale to transfer to Sydney’s Catholic Enquiry Centre were discussed at the meeting.

However the official minutes of the meeting released afterwards — which listed both Bryant and Pell in attendance — gave no indication of why the decision was made.

However victims argue the reasons for the transfer must have been discussed at the meeting.


In a statement on the meeting, Dr Pell said:

“My recollection is that Bishop Mulkearns did not raise any paedophilia allegations against Ridsdale at the Consultors meetings I attended, or at any time before or after such meetings.

“I never moved Ridsdale out of Mortlake parish. I never moved him anywhere. I would never have condoned or participated in a decision to transfer Ridsdale in the knowledge that he had abused children, and I did not do so.”


Ridsdale told the commission that he pursued kids from broken families.

He said when he was in Mortlake he was unable to suppress his urge to sexually assault young children.

He admitted sharing his presbytery bedroom with a young boy and making no effort to hide his living arrangements.

“It was no secret around Mortlake, eventually, about me and my behaviour; there was talk all around among the children, and one lot of parents came to me, it would’ve been discussed at the local pub” he said.

“I got out of control again.”

“I went haywire there. Altar boys mainly.”

But Ridsdale refused to detail who in the church hierarchy had known.

Fr Bryant said he could not recall any mention in the meeting of the ages of the people who were involved.

“There was no mention of children,” he said.

Now a parish priest at Stawell, Fr Bryant said that he remembered the meeting well as it was his first.

He also said Fr Pell had been the second-most junior priest there.

“George was just a simple priest like me back in those days,” he said.

The commission has yet to formally ask Cardinal Pell to appear for the latest round of hearings, but he has offered to. Which is very gracious of him don’t you think. We should be blessed.

If it transpires, it will be his third appearance before the commission.

Commission chairman Justice Peter McClellan has told church lawyers the cardinal may need to formally respond to claims from witnesses that he had been complicit in a widespread cover-up of sexual abuse in Ballarat.

Demonstrating a remarkable ability to recall precise details of his patterns of grooming and abuse, and complete memory lapses of other events – such as sharing a house with George Pell in 1973, Ridsdale maintains that he never confessed his sins to fellow clergy or disclosed his abuse to anyone else.

But he said his crimes would have been discussed by priests at “clergy conferences”.

“It makes sense that other priests would have known, because word would have got around,” Ridsdale said.

35 Comments leave one →
  1. May 28, 2015 11:26 am

    And so the lies to protect Pell and the Church continue…

    Gerald Ridsdale says he “doesn’t recall” sharing a house with George Pell in 1973 & downplays friendship.

    Yet abuse victim nephew David Ridsdale says Pell was considered a close family friend.

  2. TB Queensland permalink
    May 28, 2015 12:09 pm

    Not exactly comPelling … nor convincing …

    Ridsdale also said that many of priests knew of his activities … so was Pell incompetent or protecting him …

    … if he was so incompetent how did he become a hot shot Vatican Cardinal? (Reward for services rendered?)

  3. May 28, 2015 12:45 pm

    “” It is clear Church authorities were well aware of sexually offending priests and brothers. Why else was Ridsdale moved from parish to parish and sent for psychological treatment multiple times?””

  4. May 28, 2015 12:47 pm
  5. May 28, 2015 12:48 pm
  6. Tom R permalink
    May 28, 2015 12:57 pm

    Ridsdale has backflipped

    I’m guessing pells flight back here has been organised already?

  7. May 28, 2015 1:28 pm

    Here’s your answer…

  8. Tom of Melbourne permalink
    May 28, 2015 4:47 pm

    Most people in the Catholic church (in my limited conversions) think the pedophiles were deliberately shunted around to avoid scrutiny and detection.

    There is no doubt that parts operated as a club for abuse.

    I’m not sure whether Pell and his cohorts knew and facilitated it or chose to just look the other way

    Either way they’re culpable.

  9. May 28, 2015 5:58 pm

    I won’t do you the disservice by posting any of it here…but, you oughta cop a look at Bolt’s damage controlling Pell Apologia over the last week to behold the (presumably) recognised damage done to the conservative brand by this shit!


  10. May 28, 2015 6:00 pm

    “… if he was so incompetent how did he become a hot shot Vatican Cardinal? (Reward for services rendered?)”

    My best guess…to get him out of the hot seat prior to the (by then) inevitable RC (which was always gonna drag his muddy name through [further] mud).

    By their actions, the world over, shall they be known for their protectophile ambitions.

  11. May 28, 2015 6:09 pm

    “I’m not sure whether Pell and his cohorts knew and facilitated it or chose to just look the other way

    Either way they’re culpable.”

    Most rational people will see it thus, aligned or otherwise. The church would be wise to come clean before the brand gets irreparably soiled; although, I fear the innuendo will follow it for centuries as things stand already.

    Mea culpa? a genuine one?

  12. Neil of Sydney permalink
    May 28, 2015 6:28 pm

    All organisations have bad apples. The solution is easy. You throw the bad apple in the bin. The big crime is that the Church moved these people on to another Church where they committed the same crimes. That is something i cannot understand.

    But the Catholic Church does have millions of children under their supervision in Catholic schools. What is the percentage of this type of activity??

  13. May 28, 2015 6:41 pm

    “The big crime is that the Church moved these people on to another Church where they committed the same crimes. ”


    “That is something i cannot understand.”

    Epic (if predictable) Fail!

    Institution Of Paedo Protectors…you can’t hide from it anymore, neither can they. Note…I didn’t ever damn or mislabel every catholic.

  14. May 30, 2015 8:46 pm
  15. Unadulterated Heresy permalink
    May 30, 2015 10:25 pm

    “The Irish gay referendum has made it clear that it’s the people who have the power and not the Vatican,” he said. “So I implore the people of the Catholic community to stand up.” ~ David Ridsdale

  16. May 31, 2015 7:04 pm

    Abbott, unsurprisingly silent on Pelll…but, we definitely need more RC into Unions though! (in fact, maybe we should divert some cash from the RC into The Institutional Response Into Child Sexual Abuse towards further trawling against Unions!…wait, what!?).

  17. June 1, 2015 8:31 am

    Cardinal George Pell described as ‘sociopathic’, ‘callous’ by Pope-appointed abuse commissioner…

  18. June 1, 2015 8:33 am
  19. TB Queensland permalink
    June 1, 2015 8:44 am

    So who’s actually playing politics here, Warren and Rupert?

    Labor has been calling on Mr Entsch or another conservative MP to co-sponsor their bill in order for it to have bipartisan support.

    However Mr Entsch said he would do no such thing and would “vehemently oppose” Mr Shorten’s bill.

    “This is politics, this is all about Bill Shorten,” Mr Entsch said.

    “Getting same-sex marriage passed by the parliament is also a matter of timing. We should be focusing on the budget and getting that passed now and then look to gay marriage in the spring sittings.”

    Just fkn do it!

    Then you can try and get the budget sorted … (with “try” being the operative word) … the two subjects are NOT interrelated unless you want to blackmail one side of parliament!

  20. Tom R permalink
    June 1, 2015 9:13 am

    So who’s actually playing politics here

    The same rancid dipshit who always has been. Labor have been at this for a long time, long before the Irish decision. The fact that they are using that to ramp it up doesn’t change their previous actions, merely re-inforces them. The fact that this embarrasses the libs is nobodies fault but their own.

    Deputy Labor Leader Tanya Plibersek is offering to remove her name from the bill, paving the way for a government member to take her place and make the legislation bipartisan.

    “We’ve always said the support of members of both major parties is crucial to this reform succeeding,” Ms Plibersek told Fairfax Media on Saturday. “If a Liberal MP agrees to second this bill to achieve marriage equality, I will step aside as the seconder.”

    Entsch has had plenty off opportunity to accept the offer, and it still is open. I’m not sure what more Labor can do. Except perhaps take Tanya’s advice and make it a binding vote for Labor, although, that will probably only make it longer before it is legislated.

    In March 2014, Ms Plibersek sent a letter to all Liberal and Nationals MPs inviting them to co-sponsor a same-sex marriage bill she drafted, which was endorsed by the Labor caucus.

    “In more than a year, no Liberal has come forward to co-sponsor, so Bill Shorten and I have lodged a bill,” she said.

    “So now, once again, I extend the invitation for a Liberal MP to support this bill for marriage equality. Now’s the time to get this done.”

  21. June 1, 2015 11:30 am
  22. TB Queensland permalink
    June 2, 2015 4:33 pm

    The Mad Abbott should rescind Pell’s citizenship … and send him into stateless purgatory!

  23. June 2, 2015 5:16 pm


    The Institutional Obfuscator from The League Of Paedophile Protectors is also a cultist.

  24. June 2, 2015 5:17 pm

    “His eminence is up shit creek…”

    I prefer, “his eminence”.

  25. June 2, 2015 6:26 pm
  26. June 2, 2015 6:37 pm

    jesus moments apply more to self advantageous things than unfortunate distractions, apparently.

    I just had a non-jesus moment.

  27. TB Queensland permalink
    June 2, 2015 6:39 pm

    I just had a non-jesus moment.

    One of many I suspect, mon ami! 🙂

  28. June 2, 2015 6:58 pm

    I have never had the supposed alternative!

  29. June 5, 2015 11:04 am
  30. June 5, 2015 12:15 pm
  31. armchair opinionator permalink
    June 5, 2015 1:01 pm

  32. armchair opinionator permalink
    June 5, 2015 1:03 pm

    oops, sorry wrong thread! 😳

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