It has taken almost 50 years for the horrific details inside Case Study 43 to see the light of day.
The 280-page document, released by the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse on Tuesday, provides a blueprint of criminal activity relating to the abuse of boys at Marist Brothers Hamilton in the early 1970s.
Among the most tragic stories is that of 13-year-old Andrew Nash who took his life in 1974 after being abused by Francis Cable (Brother Romuald).
While his family has been aware of the abuse that led-up to his death for years, they did not know about the web of inside knowledge of cover-ups that existed within the religious community.
"Australia now knows what happened to my son Andrew. Andrew is not forgotten," Andrew's mother Audrey Nash, 94, said on Tuesday.
"I had to wait 46 years to find out who was responsible for his death. This report details the crimes and failings of the Marist Brothers and of the Roman Catholic Church."
The Royal Commission withheld the public release of the document until all of the legal proceedings involving those who featured in it were completed.
The final matter involved William Wade (Brother Christopher), who was sentenced to four months' jail last month for failing to disclose to police what he knew about the sexual abuse of his colleagues.
Andrew's brother Geoffrey said he was pleased the details of Case Study 43 had finally been revealed.
"It's a damning document when you read it," he said.
"The human cost... the Marist Brothers destroyed my family, they killed my little brother and destroyed my mother's life."
In addition to physical violence and sexual abuse at Marist Brothers Hamilton the case study also deals with systemic issues within the Maitland-Newcastle Diocese regarding child sexual abuse.
The knowledge of senior church personnel of allegations of sexual abuse by priests and the movement and treatment of priests accused of child sexual abuse receives particular attention.
The case study establishes that senior clergy including former Bishop Leo Clarke, Monsignor Patrick Cotter and Father Bill Burston were aware of complaints about notorious pedophile priest Vincent Ryan in the mid-1970s.
This is at odds with a statement from Bishop Clarke who said he only became aware of Ryan's offences in 1995.
"Monsignor Cotter's accounts of conversations with Bishop Clarke in 1976 indicate that Bishop Clarke knew that Father Ryan was in Melbourne for treatment in relation to homosexuality and 'problems' with children. That makes plain he was aware that Father Ryan was the subject of allegations of a sexual nature in relation to children," the report says.
Stephen Murray said child abuse at the hands of the church had caused untold suffering across the Newcastle and the Hunter.
"Within 500 metres of this spot... I was in the scouts with and played sport with five boys who have killed themselves,he said.
"Most of our friends are dead."
In a statement the head of Marist Brothers Province of Australia Brother Peter Carroll acknowledged the damage the order's members had caused.
"We accept that the damage done continues today," he said.
"I also accept that there is nothing in any person's power to change the past and make whole what has been broken apart. For some there has simply been too much pain, too much sorrow and too much trauma."
"My focus, and that of the Marist Brothers, is to work on what little is in our power, which is responding to those who have experienced abuse with practical steps to acknowledge the damage through counselling, compensation and apology - be it through the National Redress Scheme, through direct approach to the Marist Brothers or through the Civil litigation system."
A spokeswoman for the Maitland-Newcastle diocese said the diocese was pleased the report had been released.
"The diocese has, continues to, and will always acknowledge both the terrible levels of historic child sexual abuse that occurred within the diocese, the failures of some of its past leaders to protect children from that abuse and the ongoing harm experienced by some survivors, their families and friends," she said.
"The Diocese has urged the Commonwealth Attorney-General's Office to publish the Royal Commission's Case Study 43 as soon as practicable following civil and criminal proceedings.
"The diocese is glad to see the release of the report and hopes that its release may provide some comfort to survivors and their families."
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