Church apologises again for abuse by Fr Frank Green

fr frank green

The Catholic Church has again apologised to the Ledingham brothers for the abuse inflicted on them by Auckland diocese priest, the late Fr Frank Green.

“We are concerned that they feel the process following their complaint was not satisfactory,” the Church says in a statement.

In 2002 Mike, Gerry and Chris Ledingham went public with their stories of abuse and the Church made a financial settlement with them.

However, the brothers have ongoing concerns about the church’s attitude to child sexual abuse.

Mike Ledingham said the church should do more to acknowledge past abuse and prevent future abuse.

“They should be penitent.”

On June 1, two of the brothers, Chris and Mike, family and friends returned to Our Lady of Assumption Church, Onehunga, Auckland where and a Māori healer came to cleanse the clergy house.

The cleansing coincided with the launch of Mike’s book “The Catholic Boys”.

In a speech at the book launch, Chris Ledingham (pictured) said he used to struggle even driving down the road past the church.

“This criminal offender had not only violated my body but crushed my soul and spirit as well,” he said of Green.

Chris Ledingham told the group that his 2002 experience meeting with Bishop Dunn, Monsignor Cronin, other clergy and their QCs re-victimised him.

“Our testimony was met within a combative atmosphere, with disdain and disbelief.

“The church circled the wagons and defended itself.

“For them, the church was under attack, and we were the enemy”, he said.

Closure and cathartic cleansing

Ledingham said that until Saturday he could not get closure but the presbytery cleansing ceremony, led by tohunga Rehua Ote Rangi Kereama, was a “process of release”.

Recently Chris and Mike Ledingham also met Royal Commission’s Ali’imuamua Sandra Alofivae, where Chris Ledingham said he was respected, supported and believed throughout the entire process.

“Michael and I came away feeling very glad we had attended. There was a feeling of relief, a cathartic joy of sorts.”

Virginia Noonan, Director of the Catholic Church’s National Office of Professional Standards, said she hopes the book launch and Māori blessing on the site will be part of the healing process to these survivors.

Noonan says she is happy to meet with the Ledingham brothers “to better understand what happened and if there anything further we can do”.

Sources

News category: New Zealand.

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