Two directions hearings will be held in Sydney in February to find out if Cardinal George Pell and Bishop Ronald Mulkearns are too ill to give evidence to a child sex abuse inquiry in Ballarat.
The Royal Commission into child sex abuse has called the directions hearing on Bishop Mulkearns to be held on February 5 at 10am immediately following a directions hearing on Cardinal Pell. The purpose is to consider Cardinal Pell and Bishop Mulkearns’ capacity to attend the third part of the public hearing into Catholic Church authorities in Ballarat on February 22.
The directions hearing will be lead by Chair of the Royal Commission Justice Peter McClellan AM and will be live-streamed. Earlier this month, Cardinal Pell's doctors deemed him too sick to travel from Rome to Melbourne as planned to front the child abuse royal commission due to a worsened heart condition. Bishop Mulkearns is in palliative care and was too sick to appear before the inquiry at the public hearing this month.