The Bishop of the Australian Defence Force is to plead not guilty to child sexual offences dating back 45 years, a Perth court has been told.
Bishop Max Davis is accused of abusing a student at St Benedict's College at New Norcia, north-east of Perth, in 1969.
He was a teacher there at the time, and the offences allegedly occurred two years before he was ordained.
Davis is believed to be the most senior clergyman in the Catholic Church in Australia, and the first bishop to be charged with a child sexual offence.
He has been charged with three counts of indecent treatment of a child under 14.
Davis was released on bail to return to his home in Canberra, where he will be required to report to a police station as one of the conditions of his bail.
The Catholic Military Ordinariate of Australia earlier issued a statement, saying Mr Davis had stood aside from his office and his role as Catholic member of the Religious Advisory Committee to the Services while the matter was dealt with by the courts.
It said he had not been ordained at the time of the alleged offences, and that he denied the charges.
According to reports in a Catholic newspaper, Davis grew up in Perth and was ordained in 1971.