Cardinal Pell Dead At 81 Following Complications From Hip Surgery — The Betoota Advocate

Cardinal Pell Dead At 81 Following Complications From Hip Surgery — The Betoota Advocate

ERROL PARKER | Editor-at-large | Contact

Cardinal George Pell has died in Rome aged 81 following hip surgery.

The most senior Vatican figure to be convicted of sex abuse charges, the Vatican announced that Cardinal Pell died peacefully moments after a visit from Pope Francis who brought with him one of Pope Benedict’s pillows to help comfort him.

Cardinal Pell became a polarising figure in the Catholic Church following his conviction on historical child sex abuse charges and remained so after those convictions were quashed in the years proceeding the trial.

Archbishop Gary Longlands from the Betoota-Eromanga Diocese spoke to The Advocate about the Cardinal, telling our reporter that there probably wasn’t a more divisive figure in the Australian Catholic Church.

“I guess that’s what being convicted of those offences would do. Make your a polarising and divisive figure,” said Archbishop Longlands.

“The Vatican really did get a 2-for-1 deal this year. Two of their most controversial figures getting smothered in the same month. But George Pell’s death ends a chapter for many people around the world. It also begins another,”

“At this point, I probably should say something like those charges were quashed and he should be afforded the same dignity as those who also have their charges quashed but what’s the point? That doesn’t make him any less of a terrible person. Someone who tried to hide from what he was being accused of until the Victorian Police charged him. Someone who refused to come home and face the music. That’s what he should be remembered as.”

More to come.

Author: Stephen Bailey