Pope: new bishop replaces convicted Australian cleric
VATICAN CITY (AP) — Pope Francis has appointed a bishop to administer an Australian archdiocese whose archbishop was convicted of covering up for a pedophile priest.
The Vatican said Sunday that Bishop Gregory O’Kelly, an Adelaide native, will serve as apostolic administrator for the Adelaide archdiocese.
Two weeks ago, Archbishop Philip Wilson became the most senior Catholic cleric worldwide to be convicted of covering up child sex abuse. He faces a possible two-year prison term.
Also in Australia, Cardinal George Pell, who was one of the pope’s top aides when he served as Vatican finance minister, faces trial on sexual assault charges.
Francis recently has insisted top clerics be held responsible for failing to swiftly crack down on pedophile priests.
Decades-long pedophile scandals and systematic cover-ups have stained the Catholic Church’s reputation.