Justice Ryan and Dublin Diocesan reports, reactions?

Discuss church-state separation issues that are relevant in Ireland.
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Ygern
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Commission of Investigation: Catholic Archdiocese of Dublin

Post by Ygern » Thu Nov 26, 2009 4:44 pm

Commission of Investigation into Catholic Archdiocese of Dublin is online now if you would like to read it: http://tinyurl.com/ybkmp76
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Investigation into the Catholic Archdiocese of Dublin

Post by tony » Thu Nov 26, 2009 8:16 pm

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/europe/8381119.stm
Irish Church accused of abuse cover-up
BBC News - Thursday, 26 November 2009

A damning report into child abuse in the Dublin archdiocese has criticised the Catholic Church hierarchy for covering up the abuse.

The report investigated how Church and state authorities handled allegations of child abuse against 46 priests.

It found that the Church placed its own reputation above the protection of children in its care.

It also said that state authorities facilitated the cover-up by allowing the Church to operate outside the law.

Reacting to the report, the current Archbishop of Dublin Diarmuid Martin said "no words of apology would ever be sufficient" and offered "to each and every survivor, my apology, my sorrow and my shame for what happened to them".

He added that the "many good priests of the archdiocese" shared his sense of shame.

The "Report of the Commission of Investigation into the Catholic Archdiocese of Dublin" covered a period from 1975 to 2004.

It has laid bare a culture of concealment where church leaders prioritised the protection of their own institution above that of vulnerable children in their care.

Victims

The report said the avoidance of public outrage, which would inevitably follow high-profile prosecutions, appeared more important than preventing abusers from repeating their crimes.

Instead of reporting the allegations to civic authorities, those accused of horrific crimes were systematically shuffled from parish to parish where they could prey on new, unsuspecting victims.

The report stated: "The Dublin archdiocese's pre-occupations in dealing with cases of child sexual abuse, at least until the mid 1990s, were the maintenance of secrecy, the avoidance of scandal, the protection of the reputation of the Church, and the preservation of its assets."

It also said that the archdiocese "did its best to avoid any application of the law of the state".

It found that four archbishops - John Charles McQuaid who died in 1973, Dermot Ryan who died in 1984, Kevin McNamara who died in 1987, and retired Cardinal Desmond Connell - did not hand over information on abusers.

The report said that authorities in the Dublin archdiocese who were dealing with complaints of child sexual abuse "were all very well educated people".

It added that, considering many of them had qualifications in canon law, and in some cases civil law, their claims of ignorance were "very difficult to accept".

Above the law

Civic authorities in Ireland, especially the police, were also criticised for their cosy relationship with the Church.

The report states that senior members of the force regarded priests as being outside their remit and it claims some police officers reported abuse complaints to Church authorities instead of carrying out their own investigation.

The commissioner of the Irish police, Fachtna Murphy, said it made for "difficult and disturbing reading, detailing as it does many instances of sexual abuse and failure on the part of both Church and State authorities to protect victims".

He added: "The commission has found that in some cases, because of acts or omissions, individuals who sought assistance did not always receive the level of response or protection which any citizen in trouble is entitled to expect from An Garda Síochána (the Irish police).

He said he was "deeply sorry" for the failures.

The Irish Minister for Justice, Dermot Ahern, whose department commissioned the report, called it a "scandal on an astonishing scale" where the "welfare of children counted for nothing".

He vowed to bring those who had carried out the abuse to justice, regardless of the amount of time which had passed.

The Commission's work concentrated on a "representative sample" of complaints made by 320 children against 46 priests, 11 of whom were convicted of sexual assaults on children.

The number of complaints of abuse made by boys was more than double those submitted by girls.

The Commission said it was satisfied that "effective structures and procedures currently in operation" and that all complaints of clerical child sexual abuse are now reported to police.

Thursday's report comes six months after the publication of the Ryan report in May, which took submissions from 2,000 people who said they had suffered physical and sexual abuse while in the care of Catholic-run institutions.

The Ryan report, also known as the report of the Commission to Inquire into Child Abuse, found church leaders knew that sexual abuse was "endemic" in boys' institutions.
http://news.sky.com/skynews/Home/World- ... 1085?f=rss
Archbishops 'Covered Up' Child Sex Abuse
5:50pm UK, Thursday November 26, 2009
Adam Arnold, Sky News Online

Four archbishops and the Irish police have been accused of covering up decades of crimes against children by Catholic priests.
A new report has said the Catholic hierarchy in Ireland was given immunity to conceal the sex abuse for decades.

Authorities enjoyed a cosy relationship with the Church and did not enforce the law, said the Commission to Inquire into the Dublin Archdiocese.

It uncovered evidence of a "don't ask, don't tell" policy throughout the Church.

Hundreds of crimes against defenceless children from the 1960s to the 1990s were not reported, while the Irish police treated clergy as though they were above the law.

The four archbishops, obsessed with secrecy and avoiding scandal, protected abusers and reputations at all costs.

The four - John Charles McQuaid who died in 1973, Dermot Ryan who died in 1984, Kevin McNamara who died in 1987, and retired Cardinal Desmond Connell - did not hand over information on abusers.

Even when Cardinal Connell gave 17 names to officers in 1995, the Commission later found there were 28 priests with allegations against them at that time.

Irish Justice Minister, Dermot Ahern, pledged to bring offenders to court regardless of the time that has passed, and called on people to come forward with information.

The current police chief, Fachtna Murphy, has apologised for the force's past failures to protect the victims. He said the report made for "difficult and disturbing reading".

The primary loyalty of bishops and archbishops is to the Church, the commission report said.

Bishop James Kavanagh, Bishop Dermot O'Mahony, Bishop Laurence Forristal and Bishop Donal Murray all knew about child abuse for many years.

Another man who knew was disgraced Bishop Brendan Comiskey, a reformed alcoholic who failed to control paedophile priests when in charge of the Ferns Diocese.

The inquiry, headed by Judge Yvonne Murphy, said the hierarchy cannot claim they did not know that child sex abuse was a crime.

Cardinal Connell was credited for instigating two secret canon law trials which took place over the 30-year period and led to two priests being defrocked.

Monsignor Gerard Sheehy, a powerful figure in the Catholic Archdiocese, one of the largest in Europe, fought to prevent the internal prosecutions.

While the Dublin Archdiocese inquiry found no evidence of a paedophile ring, some of the most shocking findings included:

:: One priest admitted sexually abusing more than 100 children.

:: Another accepted he abused on a fortnightly basis during his 25-year ministry.

:: One complaint was made against a priest who later admitted abusing at least six other children.

:: It took Irish police 20 years to decide on a prosecution of one priest.
http://www.independent.ie/national-news ... 55638.html
Garda 'failed to protect victims'
Irish Independent Thursday November 26 2009

The Garda Commissioner has apologised for the force's past failures to protect victims of clerical abuse.

Fachtna Murphy said sorry after it emerged that paedophile priests in Dublin were not pursued for their crimes because police officers often viewed Church figures as above the law.

Mr Murphy said the report into the sexual abuse committed in the Dublin Archdiocese over a 40-year period made for "difficult and disturbing reading".

"The Commission has found that, in some cases, because of acts or omissions, individuals who sought assistance did not always receive the level of response or protection which any citizen in trouble is entitled to expect from An Garda Siochana," he said. "I am deeply sorry that this occurred."

The Commissioner said the undue deference which was shown to clergy should have no place in criminal investigations and assured the public that protecting children was a priority for the current day force.

His comments come as Amnesty International called for the Government to enshrine the rights of the child into the Republic's constitution.

The human rights group said it was time for a public referendum on the issue to pave the way for necessary legislative reform.

"This report makes for deeply shocking reading, even after all that has gone before it," said Colm O'Gorman, Amnesty's executive director in Ireland.

"Bishops in Dublin colluded with child abusers, protecting them and hiding them, enabling them to prey on the innocent. Children were deliberately sacrificed to protect the Church. Dozens of priests and members of the clergy were involved."

But he said the State also had responsibility to shoulder and noted that the authorities are still deprived of many legal powers to protect children and said: "Where the State fails to defend the rights of children and abdicates responsibility for their care, then abuse and exploitation are all too often the result."

Press Association
http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/bre ... king73.htm
Commission finds Church covered up child sex abuse
Irish Times - PATSY MCGARRY, Religious Affairs Correspondent

The Commission of Investigation into Dublin’s Catholic Archdiocese has concluded that there is “no doubt” that clerical child sexual abuse was covered up by the archdiocese and other Church authorities.

The commission’s report covers the period between January 1st 1975 and April 30th 2004. It said there cover-ups took place over much of this period.

In its report, published this afternoon, it has also found that “the structures and rules of the Catholic Church facilitated that cover-up.”

It also found that “the State authorities facilitated the cover-up by not fulfilling their responsibilities to ensure that the law was applied equally to all and allowing the Church institutions to be beyond the reach of the normal law enforcement processes.”

Over the period within its remit “the welfare of children, which should have been the first priority, was not even a factor to be considered in the early stages,” it said.

“Instead the focus was on the avoidance of scandal and the preservation of the good name, status and assets of the institution and of what the institution regarded as its most important members – the priests,” it said.

In making its main findings, the report it concluded that “it is the responsibility of the State to ensure that no similar institutional immunity is ever allowed to occur again. This can be ensured only if all institutions are open to scrutiny and not accorded an exempted status by any organs of the State.”

The Dublin Archdiocese Commission of Investigation was set up on March 28th, 2006. It completed its report on July 21st last when it was presented to the Minister for Justice Dermot Ahern.

Since then it has been sent twice to the High Court as there were concerns that publication of its contents in full might prejudice current proceedings against two men who face allegations of abuse and which it had investigated.

Following edits to the report, made by Mr Justice Paul Gilligan, the report was finally cleared for publication last Thursday.

The commission investigated allegations made against a sample of 46 priests, out of a total of 102 relevant to the period, and against whom 320 complaints had been made.

Where individual Archbishops of Dublin were concerned it found that Archbishop John Charles McQuaid - who held office from 1940 to 1972 - did not apply canon law where such allegations were concerned, though he was familiar with its requirements.

His dealings with Fr Edmondus in 1960 “were aimed at the avoidance of scandal and showed no concern for the welfare of children.”

Archbishop Dermot Ryan - who held office from 1972 to 1984 - “failed to properly investigate complaints” against any of the six priests dealt with by the Commission from his period in office. “He also ignored the advice given by a psychiatrist in the case of another priest (Fr Henry Moore) that he had placed in a parish setting.” It found that Fr Moore was subsequently convicted of a serious assault on a young teenager while working as a parish curate.

Archbishop Ryan also seemed to have adopted “a deliberate policy” to ensure that knowledge of problems involving accused priests “was as restricted as possible.” This resulted “in a disastrous lack of co-ordination in responding to problems.”

Archbishop Kevin McNamara - who held office from 1984 to 1987 - restored to ministry a priest, Fr Bill Carney, despite his having pleaded guilty to charges of child sex abuse in 1983 and despite suspicions about him where “numerous” other children were concerned. Fr Carney has since been laicized.

Archbishop McNamara also appointed Fr Ivan Payne, also since laicized, as Vice-Officialis of the Marriage Tribunal in Dublin even though Archbishop Ryan had previously refused to do so.

It was Archbishop McNamara who was first to take out insurance against possible claims for child abuse. He did so in March 1987 and all Catholic dioceses on the island of Ireland followed suit, excepting one.

Cardinal Desmond Connell, who held office as Archbishop from 1988 to April 2004, “was slow to recognise the seriousness of the situation” on assuming office. He was “over-reliant” on the advice of other people. While “clearly appalled by the abuse” it took him some time “to realize that it could not be dealt with by keeping it secret and protecting priests from normal civil processes.”

He showed “little understanding of the overall plight of victims” some of whom found him “remote and aloof” and some “sympathetic and kind.” However, and “on the other hand he did take an active interest in their civil litigation against the Archdiocese and personally approved the defences which were filed by the Archdiocese.”

Liability for injury and damage “was never admitted.” His strategies in civil cases, “while legally acceptable, often added to the hurt and grief of complainants.”

Where auxiliary bishops of Dublin over the period were concerned, the commission found that those who “dealt particularly badly with complaints” were Bishop Dermot O’Mahony (retired) and Bishop James Kavanagh (deceased). It found Bishop Donal Murray (currently Bishop of Limerick ) “also dealt badly with a number of complaints.”

Bishop Murray’s failure to reinvestigate earlier suspicions against Fr Thomas Naughton “was inexcusable.”

It also said the recently retired Bishop of Ossory, Dr Laurence Forristal, “was the only bishop to unequivocally admit in evidence to the commision that he may not have handled matters satisfactorily.”

It found that “there was a disturbing failure to accept responsibility on the part of the bishops who gave evidence. There was a tendency to blame the Archbishop and/or the chancellor” of the archdiocese.

Where priests of the archdiocese were concerned some were aware that particular instances of abuse had occurred, the commission found. “A few were courageous and brought complaints to the attention of their superiors.” However, it concluded that “the vast majority simply chose to turn a blind eye.”

The commission found that “there were a number of inappropriate contacts between the gardaí and the Archdiocese.” It cited the example of Garda Commissioner Costigan who handed over the case of Fr Edmondus to Archbishop McQuaid for investigation in 1960 This was “totally inappropriate”, it said.

“The relationship between some senior gardaí and some priests and bishops was also inappropriate,” it said. “A number of very senior members of the gardaí, including the Commissioner in 1960, clearly regarded priests as outside their remit. There are some examples of gardaí actually reporting complaints to the Archdiocese instead of investigating them.”

The report added, however, that “it is fortunate that some junior members of the force did not take the same view.” The commission was “impressed” with those gardaí involved in the prosecution of Fr Carney in the early 1980s. It “was not impressed” by the 20-year delay in reaching a decision to bring charges against a priest referred to only as Fr X.

Where the health authorities were concerned, it found they had “a very minor role in dealing with child sexual abuse by non family members.” It expressed concern that legislation covering the role of the HSE “is inadequate even for that limited role.”
http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/bre ... king59.htm
Church used 'don't tell' approach
Irish Times - ELAINE EDWARDS

The pre-occupations of the Dublin Archdiocese in dealing with cases of child sexual abuse, at least until the mid 1990s, were the “maintenance of secrecy, the avoidance of scandal, the protection of the reputation of the Church and the preservation of its assets”, the Murphy commission has said.

It says the American phrase “don’t ask, don’t tell” was appropriate to describe the attitude of the Dublin Archdiocese to clerical sex abuse for most of the period covered by the report.

There was an “obsessive concern with secrecy and the avoidance of scandal” and successive Archbishops and bishops failed to report complaints to the gardai prior to 1996.

Main findings:

- The archdiocese first made inquiries about insurance cover against compensation claims in the mid 1980s and such cover was put in place in 1987.

- The commission said it “did not accept” as true the church’s repeated claims to have been on “a learning curve” in relation to allegations of child sexual abuse.

- In 1981, Archbishop Dermot Ryan “showed a clear understanding of both the recidivist nature of child sexual abusers and the effects of such abuse on children” when he referred a priest to a therapeutic facility in Stroud, in the UK.

- “All the Archbishops of Dublin in the period covered by the Commission were aware of some complaints. This is true of many of the auxiliary bishops also. At the time the Archdiocese took out insurance in 1987, Archbishop Dermot Ryan and Archbishop John Charles McQuaid had had, between them, available information on complaints against at least 17 priests operating under the aegis of the Dublin Archdiocese. The taking out of insurance was an act proving knowledge of child sexual abuse as a potential major cost to the Archdiocese and is inconsistent with the view that Archdiocesan officals were still on a ‘learning curve’ at a much later date, or were lacking in an appreciation of the phenomenon of child sexual abuse.”

- Many of the auxiliary bishops also knew of the fact of abuse as did officials, including Monsignor Gerard Sheehy and Monsignor Alex Stenson who worked in the Chancellery. Bishop James Kavanagh, Bishop Dermot O’Mahony, Bishop Laurence Forristal, Bishop Donal Murray and Bishop Brendan Comiskey were aware for many years of complaints and/or suspicions of clerical child sexual abuse in the Archdiocese. Religious orders were also aware.

- The commission said it found claims of ignorance on the part of the church authorities and the religious orders who were dealing with complaints “very difficult to accept” as they were all “very well educated people”.

- “Child sexual abuse did not start in the 20th century. Since time immemorial it has been a ‘delict’ under canon law, a sin in ordinary religious terms, and a crime in the law of the State. Ignorance of the law is not a defence under the law of the State. It is difficult for the commission to accept that ignorance of either the canon law or the civil law can be a defence for officials of the church”.

- Some priests were aware that particular instances of abuse had occurred. “A few were courageous and brought complaints to the attention of their superiors. The vast majority simply chose to turn a blind eye.”

- “There is no doubt that the reaction of the Church authorities to reports of clerical child sexual abuse in the early years of the commission’s remit was to ensure that as few people as possible knew of the individual priest’s problem. “There was little or no concern for the welfare of the abuse child or for the welfare of other children who might come into contact with the priest. Complainants were often met with denial, arrogance and cover-up and with incompetence and incomprehension in some cases. Suspicions were rarely acted on.”

- All the Archbishops and many of the auxiliary bishops in the period covered…handled child sex abuse complaints badly.

- During the period under review, from 1975, there were four Archbishops – Archbishops McQuaid, Ryan, McNamara and Connell. “Not one of them reported his knowledge of child sexual abuse to the gardaí throughout the 1960s, 1970s or 1980s. It was not until November 1995 that Archbishop Connell allowed the names of 17 priests about whom the Archdiocese had received complaints to be given to the gardaí. This figure was not complete. At that time, there was knowledge within the Archdiocese of at least 28 priests against whom there had been complaints.”

- “The Archbishops, bishops and other officials cannot claim that they did not know that child sexual abuse was a crime. As citizens of the State, they have the same obligations as all other citizens to uphold the law and report serious crimes to the authorities.”

- The situation improved from the start of the implementation of the church’s Framework Document in 1996 but it took “some time” for the structures and procedures to be fully implemented.

- Commission is satisfied there are effective structures and procedures currently in operation.

- “The commission is satisfied that all complaints of clerical child sexual abuse made to the Archdiocese and other Church authorities are now reported to the gardaí.”

- Current Archbishop [Dr Diarmuid Martin] and the Director of the Child Protection Service are “clearly committed and effective” but “institutional structures need to be sufficiently embedded to ensure that they survive uncommitted or ineffective personnel”.

- New guidelines were introduced in 2009 by the National Board for Safeguarding Children. Ian Elliot, the chief executive of the national board which covers all 32 dioceses on the island, told the commission that all dioceses, religious organisations and other parts of the Church that wish to be part of a new child protection policy will have to sign a commitment to implement the policy.

- The names of those church authorities who fail to sign will be made known to the public.

Garda:


Prior to 2002, complaints into child sexual abuse were handled locally by the gardai. Consequently, there was no co-ordinated approach taken by the gardai in relation to the investigation of child sexual abuse by clerics. “There is therefore considerable variation in the manner in which those investigations were undertaken and the results achieved.”

- “The Garda investigation undertaken into clerical sexual abuse in the Archdiocese of Dublin which commenced in October 2002 was, in the opinion of the Commission, an effective, co-ordinated and comprehensive inquiry. It established a databased recording complaints and valuable information which continues to be maintained.”

- “The commission would like to note the considerable praise heaped by many of the complainants who came forward to the Commission on members of the specialist unit in the National Bureau of Criminal Investigation who carried out individual investigations.”

HSE:

- The commission “formed the impression that the HSE was not adopting a systematic approach to locating records” requested in the course of its investigation.
http://www.cnn.com/2009/WORLD/europe/11 ... index.html
Irish Catholic Church covered up child abuse, report says
CNN - November 26, 2009 1:43 p.m. EST

(CNN) -- The Archdiocese of Dublin and other Catholic Church authorities covered up clerical child abuse until the mid-1990s, according to a government-commissioned report released Thursday.

The Dublin Archdiocese Commission of Investigation's 720-page report said that it has "no doubt that clerical child sexual abuse was covered up by the Archdiocese of Dublin and other Church authorities" from January 1975 to May 2004, the time covered by the report.

"The Dublin Archdiocese's pre-occupations in dealing with cases of child sexual abuse, at least until the mid 1990s, were the maintenance of secrecy, the avoidance of scandal, the protection of the reputation of the Church, and the preservation of its assets," the report said.

"The welfare of children, which should have been the first priority, was not even a factor to be considered in the early stages," it said.

"Instead the focus was on the avoidance of scandal and the preservation of the good name, status and assets of the institution and of what the institution regarded as its most important members -- the priests."

Archbishop Diarmuid Martin apologized Thursday in a news conference. "No words of apology can be sufficient," he said.

The commission was set up in March 2006 to look into allegations of child sexual abuse made against clergy in the Irish capital. Its report was completed in July.

Although the commission said it was not its place to "establish whether or not abuse occurred ... it is abundantly clear ... that child sexual abuse by clerics was widespread throughout the period."

The commission examined the histories of 46 priests, who were picked as a sample from 102 who had had complaints or suspicions of child abuse raised against them. Complaints from more than 320 children were leveled against the 46, the report said.

But it said that the number of children abused likely exceeded that.

"One priest admitted to sexually abusing over 100 children, while another accepted that he had abused on a fortnightly basis during the currency of his ministry which lasted for over 25 years," the report said.

"The total number of documented complaints recorded against those two priests is only just over 70."

In its analysis of the 46 priests, the commission said that all four archbishops -- Archbishops John Charles McQuaid, Dermot Ryan, Kevin McNamara, and Desmond Connell -- who served during the time period covered by the report handled the child sexual abuse complaints "badly."

"Not one of them reported his knowledge of child sexual abuse to the Gardai (the Irish police force) throughout the 1960s, 1970s, or 1980s," the report said.

The commission did credit Connell, who took over the archdiocese in 1988, with giving Irish authorities in 1995 the names of 17 priests against whom complaints had been made -- although it called the number incomplete, saying that there was "knowledge within the Archdiocese of at least 28 priests against whom there had been complaints."

They said he was "slow to recognize the seriousness of the situation."

Connell also gave authorities permission to access the archdiocesan files in 2002.

Connell, a cardinal, apologized in a written statement. "I wish to express without reservation my bitter regret that failures on my part contributed to the suffering of victims in any form," he said.

"Although I am all too aware that such apologies and expressions of regret can never be adequate as a response to so much hurt and violation and, in any case, lose their value through repetition, I apologize again now from my heart and ask the forgiveness of those who have been so shamefully harmed."

The report named 11 priests who had pleaded guilty to or were convicted of sexual assaults on children. Of the other 35, it gave pseudonyms to 33 of them and redacted the names of two.

The report shot down the notion that church leadership was unaware of the problem. "The Archdiocese of Dublin and other Church authorities have repeatedly claimed to have been, prior to the late 1990s, 'on a learning curve' in relation to the matter," it said.

However, it said McNamara, Ryan and McQuaid had information on complaints against at least 17 priests when the Archdiocese took out insurance in 1987 to cover future compensation claims and lawsuits related to sexual abuse allegations.

"The taking out of insurance was an act proving knowledge of child sexual abuse as a potential major cost to the Archdiocese and is inconsistent with the view that Archdiocesan officials were still 'on a learning curve' at a much later date, or were lacking in an appreciation of the phenomenon of clerical child sex abuse," it said.

Thursday's findings follow a report that came out in May, detailing allegations of child abuse in various institutions across Ireland from the 1940s to the present. Though both reports deal with child abuse, they are not related, having been written by two separate commissions investigating two different subjects.

The May report looked at child abuse in lay institutions, including reformatories, hospitals, orphanages, children's homes and industrial schools across the country. Some of those institutions were linked to religious orders, but none were strictly religious schools.

Speaking last month after the Irish High Court cleared the way for Thursday's report to be made public, Irish Justice Minister Dermot Ahern said he was pleased the information would not be kept private.

"I have always made it clear that I have been anxious to put the report into the public domain as quickly as possible, while at the same time not wishing to do anything which would prejudice the chances of any of the people involved in these evil deeds being brought to justice," Ahern said in a statement.

CNN's Atika Shubert contributed to this report.
http://www.nytimes.com/aponline/2009/11 ... ml?_r=1&hp
Church in Ireland Said to Have Covered Up Abuse
By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
Published: November 26, 2009

DUBLIN (AP) -- Bishops of the Roman Catholic Church in Dublin covered up decades of child abuse by priests to protect the church's reputation, an expert commission reported Thursday after a three-year investigation.

Abuse victims welcomed the report on the Dublin Archdiocese's mishandling of abuse complaints against its parish priests from 1975 to 2004. It followed a parallel report published in May into five decades of rape, beatings and other cruelty committed by Catholic orders of nuns and brothers nationwide in church-run schools, children's workhouses and orphanages from the 1930s to mid-1990s.

The government said the Dublin investigation ''shows clearly that a systemic, calculated perversion of power and trust was visited on helpless and innocent children in the archdiocese.''

''The perpetrators must continue to be brought to justice, and the people of Ireland must know that this can never happen again,'' the government said, also apologizing for the state's failure to hold church authorities accountable to the law.

The 720-page report -- delivered to the government in July but released Thursday after extensive legal vetting -- analyzes the cases of 46 priests against whom 320 complaints were filed. The 46 were selected from more than 150 Dublin priests implicated in molesting or raping boys and girls since 1940.

Eleven priests convicted of child abuse are named in the report, but 33 are referred to by aliases and two have their names blacked out because their criminal cases are about to begin in Dublin courts.

The report rejected past bishops' key claim that they were ignorant of both the scale and criminality of priests' abuse of children. It documented how the Dublin Archdiocese negotiated a 1987 insurance policy for future legal costs of defending lawsuits and compensation claims.

At the time, bishops knew of at least 17 priests linked to abuse cases, the report said, and ''the taking out of insurance was an act proving knowledge of child sexual abuse as a potential major cost to the archdiocese.''

Victims appealed to the government not to let bishops retain the right to decide whether to refer abuse complaints to police.

''Never again should the Catholic Church in Ireland blame others for its own decision to reassign priests (to other parishes) who were clearly a danger to children,'' said one abuse victim, Marie Collins. She was raped by a Dublin priest as a 13-year-old hospital patient in 1960, but police and church officials declined to pursue her complaint.

Investigators spent three years poring over 60,000 previously secret Dublin church files. They were handed over by Dublin Archbishop Diarmuid Martin, a veteran Vatican diplomat appointed to Dublin in 2004 with a brief to confront the scandal. Among the files were more than 5,500 that Martin's predecessor, retired Cardinal Desmond Connell, had tried to keep locked in the archbishop's private vault.

The investigators, led by a judge and two lawyers, said that while it was not their job to confirm the scale of abuse cases, they had no doubt that the 46 priests abused many more than 320 children.

''One priest admitted to sexually abusing over 100 children, while another accepted that he had abused on a fortnightly basis during the currency of his ministry which lasted for over 25 years,'' they wrote.

Three Dublin archbishops -- John Charles McQuaid (1940-72), Dermot Ryan (1972-84) and Kevin McNamara (1985-87) -- did not tell police about clerical abuse cases, instead opting to avoid public scandals by shuttling offenders from parish to parish and even overseas to U.S. churches, the commission found.

It was not until 1995 that then-Archbishop Connell allowed police to see church files on 17 clerical abuse cases kept in a secret, locked vault, though at the time Connell had records of complaints against at least 29 priests, the report says.

Justice Minister Dermot Ahern said the state would renew efforts to prosecute more of the 46 priests in the report, as well as police officers that the investigation found colluded with church authorities to suppress complaints.

Ahern said, however, that the cover-ups reflected ''a different era where there was deference by state agencies to the church. I don't think that would happen today.''

The investigators lauded a handful of priests and mostly low-ranking police who pursued complaints and prosecutions, almost always unsuccessfully, from the 1960s to the 1980s.

Senior police officers ''clearly regarded priests as being outside their remit'' and handed ''complaints to the archdiocese instead of investigating them,'' the report said.

''A few (priests) were courageous and brought complaints to the attention of their superiors. The vast majority simply chose to turn a blind eye,'' it said.
BrendanConnolly
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Justice Ryan and Dublin Diocesan reports, reactions?

Post by BrendanConnolly » Thu Nov 26, 2009 9:24 pm

Two reports list cover-ups by the Catholic church of crimes committed by their staff on a scale that Tony Soprano would be proud of.

Why was this allowed to continue - why did it get so bad?

Even now, State Agencies such as Justice and Education seem to have a different set of rules for catholic religious than for the rest of society. If sports clubs treated children in their care as severely as religious orders and the Dublin diocesan catholic hierarchy treated them, the people responsible would be prosecuted and if the abuse was as widespread and as endemic in the sports clubs as it appears to have been with the catholic church, the sports organization would be disbanded. Why was this not done with those religious orders that were involved, why were their crimes ignored?

Prostitutes were prosecuted for having consensual sex with adults, homosexuality was illegal, and now blasphemy is making a reappearance, even offenders in Irish swimming were eventually prosecuted, but as a religious in the catholic church you could literally get away with murder and rape.

The fact that these perpetrators were religious seems to have made all the difference. People believe that religious have a direct line with god. They believe that these people are in some way special, perhaps afraid that they might call down a curse on them. In other words, Irish Society believed, and perhaps continues to believe, the confidence trick played on them by the Catholic Church (and Christianity in general) that firstly the christian god exists, and secondly that priests, brothers and nuns can influence how this god will treat us.

There is as much evidence that a christian god exists, or reincarnation exists, or the Hindu gods exist, or any other god or gods of any other religion exists, as that Santa Claus exists. No matter what a person's beliefs may be, non of these beliefs are supported by fact. And it is because of these unsupported beliefs that the religious orders are accorded special status. This must be one of the greatest confidence tricks played in human history. It is also one of the main reasons why state and church should be separate.

I have a question for the legal eagles: is it a crime not to report a crime such as sexual assault? If so, how long is the statute of limitation. Should those members of the catholic hierarchy who did not report sex crimes to the authorities not now be prosecuted?
BrendanConnolly
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Re: Investigation into the Catholic Archdiocese of Dublin

Post by BrendanConnolly » Thu Nov 26, 2009 11:27 pm

To add to me previous post. I am watching the Prime Time programme on the Murphy Report on the Dublin catholic diocese on RTE (26/11/09). Decorum prevents me from honest expression of my feelings, but if the catholic church has any integrity left it should resign en mass and approach the DPP.

My comment to those who have belief in christian religious teachings, is that if you accept catholic church rules, this same church must have given the devil one of its safest places to reside. That should be a fundamental problem for any person who has christian and catholic beliefs.
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Re: Investigation into the Catholic Archdiocese of Dublin

Post by Dr Raskolnikov » Thu Nov 26, 2009 11:47 pm

And yet they go on traipsing down to mass every Sunday, brains switched off in deference to a "tradition" that cannot be questioned or denied.

This shouldn't be surprising or upsetting in light of all that's gone before, but somehow, it is.
Science is like a blabbermouth who ruins the movie by telling you how it ends. Well, I say there are some things we don't want to know. Important things. - Ned Flanders
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Re: Investigation into the Catholic Archdiocese of Dublin

Post by Dev » Fri Nov 27, 2009 1:26 am

My views on the relationship between God and religion are admittedly changing. I used to see the terms as interchangeable but now I see people that believe in God as silly but religion is far more menacing and corrupt.
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Re: Commission of Investigation: Catholic Archdiocese of Dublin

Post by Feardorcha » Fri Nov 27, 2009 10:58 am

That was all in the past. We have safeguards in place now. We didn't know what was going on. We did our best. A few bad apples...

The excuses are sickening. The Catholic Church is little more than a paedophile ring and we in AI should be leading the demand to have our schools taken back from them.
How about an End Church Control of Schools campaign?
Or a petition to the European Parliament for help to protect our school-children from the clerics?
The Catholic Church is positioning itself through 'trusts' of the laeity to keep control - see the Edmund Rice Trust and others. We need to be on our toes to stop them or another generation will be lost to ignorance and superstition.
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Re: Investigation into the Catholic Archdiocese of Dublin

Post by FXR » Fri Nov 27, 2009 12:03 pm

The release of the report was clever and calculated. The whole thing is managed for damage limitation. If you put Archbish Diarmuid Martin on TV you don't have a target for ire you have the sympathetic face of the CCL. Pretty soon he'll be offered a big job in the Vatican where he can be re-directed down a cul-de-sac and a fixer will be put in his place. Lots of window dressing will go on and they will make much of throwing in little headlines that will mention a few million here and there but not the fact that it represents a fraction of the total.

There was not one report that attempted to uncover the network of CCL agents in the Dept of Education, the government or the Garda. Not once did anyone try to shine a light on the disease itself only this particular manifestation of it as horrific as it is. The network is intact and though the image of the organisation has just taken a terrible blow it's not fatal.

If you listen to the jet stream, by whatever means it was achieved, the whole focus has been drawn onto "the Irish Catholic Church". {message: limit to local not CCL global}
The focus is on a few bishops some of whom are dead now. No one is being brought to trial. The same thing keeps being repeated "they broke Canon Law (that’s CCL state within a State rules) as well. {message: the problem is the personnell not the CCL}

They are playing for the long term.

There was some mention of how the Vatican did not co-operate but that's one they'll have to work down and hope it gets lost in the horrific detail which it most likely will. They are well aware that releasing it just before the Christmas rush and then timing a budget to follow it they will serve the already existing unspoken Irish wish that the whole thing would just go away.

This is not just a reference to Irish religious people of differing degrees of belief, it’s a national trait. No one, bar a very few realists, wants it to burst their own particular little bubble.

Memorial to the abused
viewtopic.php?f=1&t=2862

The Indemnity Deal
viewtopic.php?f=1&t=2372&p=23868&hilit=+Petition#p23868

Mark your own place in all this well because when it happens again you'll remember what you did and what you did not do.
Human communication is a very rickety rope bridge between minds. Its too narrow to allow but a few thoughts to cross at a time. Many are lost in the chasms of noise, suspicion, misinterpretation and shooting the message through dislike of the messenger.
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Re: Commission of Investigation: Catholic Archdiocese of Dublin

Post by FXR » Fri Nov 27, 2009 12:14 pm

Feardorcha wrote:That was all in the past. We have safeguards in place now. We didn't know what was going on. We did our best. A few bad apples...

The excuses are sickening. The Catholic Church is little more than a paedophile ring and we in AI should be leading the demand to have our schools taken back from them.
How about an End Church Control of Schools campaign?
Or a petition to the European Parliament for help to protect our school-children from the clerics?
The Catholic Church is positioning itself through 'trusts' of the laeity to keep control - see the Edmund Rice Trust and others. We need to be on our toes to stop them or another generation will be lost to ignorance and superstition.
Theres a thread here:

viewtopic.php?f=3&t=2876
Human communication is a very rickety rope bridge between minds. Its too narrow to allow but a few thoughts to cross at a time. Many are lost in the chasms of noise, suspicion, misinterpretation and shooting the message through dislike of the messenger.
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Re: Justice Ryan and Dublin Diocesan reports, reactions?

Post by Ygern » Fri Nov 27, 2009 1:02 pm

Three threads on this topic merged
The universe is huge and old, and rare things happen all the time ~ Lawrence Krauss
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