Catholic Church still abusing children in New Zealand - former victim

A Kiwi who was raped and sexually abused for years at the hands of the Catholic Church believes the abuse is still happening in New Zealand.

Dunedin man Darryl Smith is in Vatican City for the Pope's summit on the abuse of minors - and he wants a clean out of cardinals and bishops.

"When I was six, I went to Marylands, and within two nights, I was raped," he says.

Marylands was a Catholic School in Christchurch. It was 1971 and it ruined Mr Smith's life.

"Every third day I was raped by someone. A staff member, a priest, a brother there. Or an older boy."

He's been to hell and back at the hands of church figures. Now he's in Vatican City to tell his story.

"Somebody has to make a stand. My friends are either too sick, dying, or gone."

And while the world's media came to listen, victim advocates from New Zealand say it's a story that's destined to be repeated.

"We have victim survivors coming to us who have suffered abuse at the hands of people - currently as we speak - who have powerful positions in the Catholic Church in NZ," says Murray Heasley.

"I believe it will still be happening in the Catholic Church of NZ," Mr Smith says.

But the church says otherwise.

"We haven't had quite some cases for quite some time," says Cardinal John Dew, the Archbishop of Wellington.

However former victims disagree.

"How does he know what someone does at night? Or what one of the priests do? If it's not reported to him currently, how would he know?" Mr Smith argues.

While there's no shortage of discussing child abuse, there's a distinct lack of a big, bold, plan to eradicate it - and some are now calling the summit a talkfest.

"It's beginning to look like a monumental waste of time. But I hope I'm wrong," Mr Heasley says.

For Mr Smith, it's a problem that can only be solved from the top.

"I hope the Pope sees this story and does something good for NZ," he says.

A solution that for decades - has been easier said than done.