F Rosa Rubicondior: Catholic Abuse News - How the Church Corrupted Ireland

Sunday 7 April 2019

Catholic Abuse News - How the Church Corrupted Ireland

Archbishop of Dublin and Primate of Ireland, Diarmuid Martin

Image credit: Gareth Chaney Collins
Archbishop of Dublin Diarmuid Martin reveals paedophile priests cannot identify new victims because they abused so many - Irish Mirror Online.

The Archbishop of Dublin, Diarmuid Martin, the senior Catholic cleric in the whole of Ireland, has revealed in an astonishingly frank interview on Irish TV, that some paedophiles priests were so prolific in their abuse that when presented with names of possible victims, they could not remember, there had been so many. In some instances, their victims numbered more than a hundred.

He made the statement in an RTE program detailing the scale of the Catholic Church's interference in Irish public life, becoming involved in just about every aspect of life since the foundation of the Republic. The programme by former government minister, Michael McDowell, looks at how this situation was allowed to develop. How could an organisation with no democratic mandate, accountable only to itself and owing allegiance to a foreign state in the form of the Vatican City, wield so much power in a supposedly democratic state?

Dr Martin told the viewers:

Any organisation has to ask how is it that at a particular time there was large number of serial paedophiles. I’m talking serious paedophiles, we’re talking about hundreds. There are cases coming forward and my people will ask, for example, a priest, if a new case comes up, from one of these historical cases, does this name mean anything to you? Sometimes they say, ‘Yes, I abused that person’. Sometimes, and this is the more worrying one, they (say) ‘the name means nothing, but I can’t say, it could have happened...

They don’t even, they didn’t even know how many people they abused.

Viewers of the RTE programme also heard from Amnesty International chief, Colm O’Gorman, who related how he came back to Ireland in 1995 to report the fact that he had been raped by a Catholic priest from the age of 14 until 17. The priest was Fr Sean Fortune who later committed suicide before he could be brought to trial. Initially, O'Gorman thought he was reporting an isolated case but withing six weeks another five men had come forward to report abuse. Fortune was eventually accused of raping 29 boys.

Former minister Michael McDowell revealed how the Catholic Church had managed to avoid paying their share of the compensation due to victims by effectively dumping the burden on the Irish State. The them minister, Michael Wood, met with representatives of the church and did a deal without consultation with the Government or the Dail, to place a cap on the church's liability, the State to make up any shortfall. This cost the Irish taxpayer some €1.2 billion with the church only paying €128 million - just over one tenth of their true liability.

Despite a huge decline in support from the Catholic Church in Ireland with the referendum votes on single-sex marriages and to decriminalise abortion going massively against the Church's teaching, and despite a massive decline in attendance at Mass in the Republic, and despite two decades of scandals involving both nuns and priests, the RTE programme concluded that the Catholic Church remains embedded in Irish life.

The fact that RTE broadcast this programme is sign of the times in the Republic. In earlier times such open criticism of the Catholic Church would have been unthinkable. Nevertheless, religion in Ireland continues to poison everything.

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