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Pope accepts retirement of Sydney bishop

Pope John Paul has officially accepted the resignation of Sydney auxiliary Bishop Geoffrey Robinson due to ill-health.

Bishop Robinson, 66, is best known for his role in developing the Towards Healing principles and procedures to respond to complaints of sex abuse against Australian Catholic church personnel.

The Pope accepted his resignation on Thursday.

Sydney Archbishop, Cardinal George Pell, expressed regret that Bishop Robinson's health has forced him to offer this early resignation.

He said he is "enormously grateful for Bishop Robinson's manifold contribution."

"On behalf of the priests and people of the Archdiocese I wish him every blessing and better health for the future."

Bishop Robinson, who was ordained in 1960, served in parish ministry before moving on to lectgure in Canon Law at the Catholic Institute of Sydney between 1967 and 1983. He also served on the Archdiocesan Marriage Tribunal and was secretary (1969-1976) and President (1976-1983) of the Canon Law Society. He has been a bishop since 1984, and chair of the Sydney Archdiocesan Catholic Schools Board since 1986.

Earlier this year, the Australian Catholic University awarded him with an honorary Doctor of the University in recognition of his work in the Towards Healing process.

His books include Divorce & Nullity: A Guide to the Annulment Process (1984), and Travels in Sacred Places (1997)

Holy Father accepts retirement of Bishop Geoffrey Robinson (Archdiocese of Sydney 16/7/04)

Archdiocese of Sydney } Most Rev Geoffrey James Robinson DD VG
Conscience - Doing the right thing and taking responsibility for it (Catalyst for Renewal)
Bishop says forgiving priest abusers easier said than done (CathNews 31/3/04)
ACU honours Bishop Robinson (Catholic Weekly 4/4/04)
Citation: Geoffrey James Robinson (Australian Catholic University Graduation Ceremony 26/3/04)
Australian Catholic University
Towards Healing: Principles and procedures in responding to complaints of abuse against personnel of the Catholic Church of Australia

Robinson answers Pell delay complaint (CathNews 21/10/02)
Vatican II: from pause to forward (Bishop Geoffrey Robinson in Eureka Street September 2002)
Sydney bishop calls for church-wide study on clerical sex abuse (CathNews 3/5/02)

19 Jul 2004