"The Pell Show" (letter)

"The Pell Show" (letter)

Stephen Hitchings

The campaign against Archbishop Pell has the quality of a well-scripted drama.

Act 1: A group of Catholics drop in for Mass, wearing their rainbow sashes. They go up for Holy Communion but are refused, so they storm outside, where the grounds appear to be conveniently swarming with journalists. The media respond with a storm of indignation.

Act 2: Just as the dust is settling from Act 1, the Archbishop is invited on a television show, where he is assaulted with a host of accusations and expected to recite word-for-word a telephone call he had almost ten years ago. Although the producers were blatantly dishonest when they invited him, he is the one accused of dishonesty, principally because he disagrees with his accusers.

Act 3: The journalistic parasites feast for weeks on this succulent offering. When they have extracted all the blood they can get, an anonymous person suddenly "remembers" that this man whose face has been plastered over the media for years is the same one who abused him 41 years ago. The Archbishop is obliged to step aside during an inquiry.

Perhaps Act 4 will be played out before this letter sees print.

It is all a bit like Peter Weir's movie The Truman Show, in which a man wakes up to find that his life has become a media spectacle.

I cannot predict how the drama will end. But what I would dearly love to know is: who is writing the script?

Sydney, NSW

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