Pope Francis formally appointed the first eight Members of the “Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors” on 22 March 2014. They were chosen from a variety of backgrounds, men and women, lay, religious, and clergy, and asked to identify further members from dioceses and religious institutes around the world:
Dr. Catherine Bonnet (France)
Mrs. Marie Collins (Ireland)
Prof. Sheila Baroness Hollins (United Kingdom)
Card. Seán O’Malley, O.F.M. Cap. (United States)
Prof. Claudio Papale (Italy)
Prof. Hanna Suchocka (Poland)
Rev. Humberto Miguel Yañez, S.J. (Argentina)
Rev. Hans Zollner, S.J. (Germany)
Following several months of intense work, Pope Francis received their recommendations and appointed nine further Commission Members:
Bishop Luis Manuel Alí Herrera (Colombia);
Dr. Gabriel Dy-Liacco (Philippines);
Mr. Bill Kilgallon (New Zealand);
Sr. Kayula Lesa, R.S.C. (Zambia);
Sr. Hermenegild Makoro, C.P.S. (South Africa);
Ms. Kathleen McCormack (Australia);
Msgr. Robert W. Oliver (United States)
Mr. Peter Saunders (England);
Dr. Krysten Winter-Green (United States).
On 21 April 2015, the Holy Father formally approved the Statutes of the Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors [PCPM] and confirmed Cardinal O’Malley as President and Mons. Oliver as Secretary.
In a Chirograph issued on 22 March 2014, Pope Francis wrote that the Commission’s task is to advise the Roman Pontiff on effective policies for the protection of minors and vulnerable adults and educational programs for all who are involved in this work.
In response, the Members are focusing their current efforts on six particular areas: the priority of healing and care for victim/survivors and their families; comprehensive guidelines in local Churches to ensure the safety of minors and vulnerable adults; education of Church leadership and ecclesial communities; initial and ongoing formation for clergy and religious in the protection of minors; theology and spirituality; and canonical and civil norms governing the protecting of minors.