In a submission to a Victorian parliamentary inquiry, the church confirmed it knew of 620 cases of sexual abuse. Another 45 cases are being investigated by church authorities.
"We have been open about the horrific abuse that has occurred in Victoria and elsewhere," said Hart.
"It is shocking and shameful that this abuse, with its dramatic impact on those who were abused and their families, was committed by Catholic priests, religious and church workers.
Two parents have avoided jail after admitting they let their son, 16, die in horrible agony because they chose to 'pray away' his burst appendix and refused to take him to the hospital.
The couple, who had seven children before Austin Sprout's death, are members of the General Assembly and the Church of the First Born in nearby Pleasant Hill, which shuns modern medicine and teaches parishioners that faith healing and prayer will cure disease.
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(Reuters) - San Francisco Archbishop-elect Salvatore Cordileone, known for a conservative stance on same-sex marriage, has been arrested in his native San Diego for drunk driving, police said on Monday.
Cordileone, 56, was stopped on suspicion of driving under the influence on Saturday near the San Diego State University campus, the San Diego Police Department said. Further details of his arrest were not immediately available.
The Vatican announced in July that Pope Benedict had appointed Cordileone, who is currently the bishop of Oakland, as the metropolitan archbishop of San Francisco.
Cordileone is also chairman of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops subcommittee for the promotion and defense of marriage.
It was close to midnight Sunday when Woodburn resident James Curths saw the 12-year-old boy running down the street toward him. Curths said the child, panting and out of breath, begged for help, telling him a man was chasing him.
Moments later, a man rounded the corner wearing only underwear. He stood a short distance away, trying to wave the boy over as Curths and his sister-in-law prepared to drive the boy to relatives.
"He was staring at us," said Heather Rodriguez, 28, Curths' sister-in-law, who was also outside. "Then he stood there with his hands on his hips like, 'You're really not going to give him to me?'"
The man who chased after the boy that night, Woodburn police say, was the Rev. Angel Armando Perez, the parish priest at St. Luke Catholic Church in Woodburn.