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Creation of a Marist Ex-students and Families lobby Group – Interest sought

By BerraBoy68 29 June 2008 86

Given the on-going discussion on this forum, comments I’ve received with other Marist Old Boys and broader interest in this case around Australia, I’m considering starting a Marist Canberra Ex-students and Families Association to lobby for an inquiry into Marist during the 1970’s through 1990’s. I think a lobby group of this type would increase the pressure on the school to come clean during the civil case. Such a group would also get considerable publicity, again, increasing pressure for the truth top be revealed.
I don’t really care who runs the inquiry as long as it is impartial and provides the answers ex-students, their families and the broader community is seeking. I expect issues for which we will seek answers to include:

– Were the offenses by Lyons, Kostka etc. covered up by the school and/or larger Marist Order (including ‘What did other teachers at the time know or suspect’ and ‘Why were parents and students concerns raised over these 30 years ignored’;

– Why exactly did Lyons (Paul) leave Marist;

– Where Lyons employment records destroyed by the school when he left and, if so, why;

– Was Lyons given a Reference when he left Marist and was this used at Daramalan – if so who wrote and signed it?

– Why is Lyons (Paul or Ray) not mentioned in the schools’officially history (small point but is smacks of re-writing history);

– Why were rumours being put around by the Order prior to Kostka’s arrest that he died several years ago;

– Why didn’t the order act quicker in having him surrender to Police prior to his arrest (it took him several months for him to actually surrender to ACT police);

– Why are the Order stating they have no-duty to care to students for Brothers Action;

– Is the suicide rate at Marist higher than the average for other schools in the ACT, and if so why?

Shoud Bro Jo etc.. be found to be at fault I would also expect the school to change the names of it’s Houses away from those implicated in this case.

Other issues to be raised would of course be welcome.

Given discussion in Riot-Act previously I also think it relevant for an interested group to discuss the past culture of violence at the school amongst staff towards students.

Again, I think a lobby group comprised of the ex-Marist Community raising these issues may well force positive action either by sheer weight/pressure of numbers and/or through embarrassment caused by adverse publicity to the school/order.

I’d also be interested in meeting with any Old Boy or their families to discuss the establishment of such a group.

What’s Your opinion?


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86 Responses to
Creation of a Marist Ex-students and Families lobby Group – Interest sought
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MickW1965 12:45 am 21 Sep 10

This is precisely the problem lukewagner1958. It insults our intelligence when they say they didn’t know about the dirty pastimes of Brother K.

lukewagner1958 12:38 pm 10 Mar 09

BACKGROUND: Kostka worked at over 20 schools during his so called teaching ” career.

He was “Moved On” from Marist Brothers in Lismore NSW Late 1960s. I was a student at the Lismore school at the time and this became common knowledge amongst the students.

Incredibly this was at the insistence of the father of a boy he molested. Even more incredible is that the father was a Lismore Police officer………………………

MY POINT: Just like used cars, dogs and imported goods come with papers of some kind, It is impossible to believe that the schools in Kostkas path of destruction were not privy to his previous postings………………. His pedigree.

BerraBoy68 6:19 pm 17 Jul 08

Dom – All I can assume is that the case is closed and kostka served his sentence. Making this info public during his recent trial may have ‘unfairly’ prejudiced his case. I think pleading guilty may also have stopped this info coming to light. However, as I am no lawyer I can’t say for sure. As for others at Marist – primary or secondary – in the past, stay tuned.

Dominic 5:26 pm 17 Jul 08

Thanks BerraBoy.

So why hasn’t Kostka’s previous conviction(s) attracted press attention? Or again, have I missed something?

I know of another Brother who was busted but won’t mention his name here as I’m not sure of his surname (and there were a few Brothers who went by the same name). He was in the primary school. I don’t know much about the proceedings against him (if any) other than to say there was a large compensation payment made to the victim. Maybe an under the table deal? – because again I’ve seen nothing in the press about it.

BerraBoy68 4:30 pm 17 Jul 08

Dominic said :

I was in Brisbane for a decade or so, and therefore out of the Canberra local news loop, but I had thought that Kostka had priors and had already done time in Cooma Jail in the 90’s. I was waiting to see if this would come up at his sentencing. It didn’t, so I was obviously wrong.

Does anyone know who it was, or was it all a figment of my imagination?

Dom – a long time teacher at Marist and old family friend told me when I caught up with him for coffee in Bris. four years ago that Kostka had already done time for abusing students. He also told me he had no doubt Kostka abused a number of students at Marist. Given who this person was and his position in the school I have no reason to doubt this. I can’t name him here as he is a family friend and, in any even, he has already been named in court documents in relation to the Marist situation – NOT I hasten to add as a pedophile himself but more in a reporting role.

BerraBoy68 4:24 pm 17 Jul 08

jimmybolina said :

To all concerned,

I am a lifetime Canberran who is completely disgusted by the abhorrent behaviour of Kostka (and others).

I am not a victim. I did not attend Marist College or Daramalan College.

Please know that there are many more Canberrans that feel exactly as I do and will support any lobby group or forum that intends to, or attempts to, insert some form of transperency into any organisation that does not believe in any true accountability for the actions of these pathetic people.

Support is everywhere.

Jimmy – you and anybody else that feels the same can contact us at timeforhealingACT@gmail.com we’re a support/lobby group who are calling for honesty and transparency in investigating the sexual abuse that occurred at Marist and Daramalan colleges. I look forward to hearing from you and anybody else you feel may be interested.

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