“Dear Pat,You have walked into a minefield with your focus on the Jesuits.The Irish Province of Jesuits are a group of bachelors who lead a charmed life.They get off on commentating on everyone else’s life while living in comfort in one of their “Ashford Castle” type communities or getting “permission” to live on their own and do their own thing. They overstate their importance and involvement in issues whether its ecumenism, academics, social justice, pretending to be deep and thoughtful and nuanced about issues, when really they are institutional men who will back the status quo to the end and dont have an original thought between them. They insist on passing comments on everyone else and yet never allow the light to be shone on them.

Peter McVerry gets great kudos for his work, much of it deserved. However, there is a darker side to it all too. He gets to live on his own in a lovely apartment as no one would be able to put up with him. There are also serious issues with him not letting go the reins of the Peter McVerry Trust even though the company has a full complement of staff including a CEO. He continues to control the Trust rather than allowing it to develop and grow without the need to have him front and centre.

Kevin O’Higgins SJ spends most of his time on Twitter passing comments and judgements on Irish society after spending years on the missions (so what, it suited him). He presents himself as a “wise old man” type with great wisdom and insight. Yet it’s clear to see that he actually has a lot of time on his hands and a great set up – living on his own, nice sun patio, dog and no one to bother him. So, no wonder he has all the time in the world to pontificate but please, give the rest of us a break as we struggle to make ends meet and get through the day.

The Jesuits canvass a certain type of lay person.

Regarding their Safeguarding Officer, Saoirse Fox she has generated a nice little industry for herself out of safeguarding. While having a mediocre professional work record, not going anywhere, she landed a plum job with the Jesuits. She is one of these “woke” types ‘ into climate change, social justice, lgbt, craft beer, music festivals, but really when it comes down to it she, along with her Jesuit colleagues, have a rigid world view dressed up as “woke” She is very blinkered in her approach and has no understanding of the pastoral care of the perpetrator.

Then the Jesuits have Pat Coyle, journalist, who is almost like Twink for RTE. The Jesuits see Pat Coyle as their Lord and Saviour as she presents them in a modern and “woke” way through media. She manages their image very carefully.

However, the Jesuit Sli Eile Ministry for young people (based on Gardiner Street Dublin) fell out of favour when it became too independent thinking. So, it was sidelined and eventually closed down.

The Jesuits breed a new generation of people who think and act their way through their Spiritual Direction programme in Manresa. It attracts a certain type again but that’s another days work. The Manresa Community also have a fine view of the gay cruising area on Dollymount Strand.

Provincial Leonard Maloney SJ was the last Jesuit headmaster of Belvedere College in Dublin. He will not only be remembered for that but also remembered for the student he disciplined who then killed himself as a result.

The Jesuits had no choice but to hand over Belvedere (2003) to a hay head master. But the Jesuits hold on to the bitter end before they hand over the reins even though its 2020 and there are plenty competent lay people to do those jobs – the Jesuit Centre for Faith and Justice is another example.

And Pat, there is plenty to say about the Jesuits in Ireland, not very flattering though. And yes, plenty of abuse cases in there too. However, the Jesuits are probably a few steps ahead of you in anticipating and facing off media attention before it gets too will be interesting to see how far you get with your current enquiries.

Ad Maiorem Dei Gloriam”.


This was a very unexpected communication.

It is interesting.

I’ve never had much to do with the Jesuits before – apart from a few retreats earlier in life.

The Father Prior thing brought me to them this time.I am watching what they will do.

Why would any religious, with a vow of poverty, live in a private apartment instead of living in community?

A Jesuit friend of mine used to always recite the following verse about the J’s

“They join the order without knowing each other.

They live together without loving each other.

They die together without mourning each other”.

What do readers think of the critique above?



C Brady The Irish CatholicSinging and dancing priest Fr Ray Kelly said if he was chosen for the Eurovision the song he entered could be a winner for Ireland.Fifty years on from Irish singer Dana Rosemary Scallon’s win with the song ‘All Kinds of Everything’ in 1970, Meath-based Fr Kelly said he would be “shocked and amazed” to be chosen.“I have had a great interest in the show, I’ve watched it from my early teens from going back to Johnny Logan in 1980 and even before, I was in school when Dana won it,” Fr Kelly said.The song, written for him by two musicians, is called ‘Hallelujah Day’ and will be on the priest’s new album set to be released by Easter.Asked whether he thought the song could win the song contest he said: “Personally I think it could, I’d be biased though.
“It’s an unreal song, it’s fabulous. It’s a Gospel song with a country-western flavour to it. I think it would go down brilliantly, the chorus is so simple I could just see the whole auditorium joining in.”Fr Ray prefaced his comments saying: “My first love first of all is my priesthood, and that’s number one in my life.”As this paper was going to press, RTÉ did not confirm whether the Eurovision contestant had already been chosen, but told this paper it will be revealed in the “next three to four weeks”.Fr Ray said that even if someone else had been chosen: “I would still love to, that doesn’t stop me from having that desire to, I would have loved to have gone to Rotterdam this year and to represent Ireland would have been such a great privilege.”Currently the priest, who is based in Oldcastle, is competing in Dancing with the Stars and has stayed in the competition by popular vote despite receiving low scores from the judges.Popular voteFr Kelly said he would be happy whether knocked out or not. He said: “It looks like I’m getting a popular vote from the people of Ireland at the moment.“And it’s not particularly for my dancing but maybe for my entertainment or my popularity in other ways, or maybe the Hallelujah story resonated with a lot of people as well, there’s a lot of things going on there.”“My logic is that it’s bringing happiness and liveliness to people’s lives for an hour or two, and if I can do that maybe not with my dancing but with my popularity and the fact that I’m a bit of an entertainer, then bring it on.”Fr Ray will be competing for a fifth time this Saturday.PAT SAYSPoor Ray is trying one thing after another to promote himself – YouTube, dancing and now the Eurovision.He was very cross that he was not allowed to sing for the Argi in Croke Park and that his record label dropped him.He’s nearly getting as anxious about his profile as the Darcy boyo.I think they both have ADD -Attention Deficit Disorder?



A blog reader sent me the video below he found on YouTube yesterday.

That was a very bad day in Divis Flats.




My experience with Dublin has been as perfect as I can imagine.The data officer, Noelle Dowling has been the essence professionalism, courtesy and efficiency. She is the kind of data officer every diocese should have.In addition Archbishop Diarmuid Martin, who has been personally involved in my request has shown total transparency and integrity.Because Clonliffe seminary minutes are held in bound volumes they are not covered by GDPR regulations.But Diarmuid Martin instructed Noelle to send ne them anyway.Here is transparency beyond the letter of the law and embracing the spirit of the law. I sent DM the following email today:

Dear Diarmuid,

Noelle Dowling, on your instructions, sent me a transcript of the Clonliffe seminary Council meetings where I was mentioned even though bound volumes are not covered by GDPR.

I want to thank you for your total transparency in these matters

If course I had already come to the conclusion of your transparency and integrity on the basis of your handing over of the diocesan abuse files to the courts and on your handling of the Maynooth and Irish College issues.

But I do need to thank you.

Mind you, reading those minutes made me cringe at my immaturity at the time. My only consolation is that you would expect 1970 18 / 19 year olds to be immature.

Importantly to me,I was pleased that the Clonliffe president Bishop Joe Carroll reported that morally, I was beyond reproach.

Now that I have all the information I have I can understand that my expulsion from Clonliffe was done in good faith.


For 47 years I did not know the reasons for my expulsion from Clonliffe. Today I do.I was expelled because they felt I was immature. They saw this immaturity in me showing itself in me giving spiritual advice to younger seminarians, reporting homosexuality in a youth club I had a placement in and not observing house rules. It also seemed that there were a small number of senior seminarians who regarded me as unsuitable to be involved in open vocation days.At the time there were 120 of us in Clonliffe. Seminarians were ten a penny and one or two were expelled every year in order to straighten up the troops. The other fellow expelled with me that year was expelled for being too pious.Anyway, I believe in Providence and therefore I believe that God had a part in it all. God knows what I would have become if I stayed in the RCC?And its better to be expelled for giving spiritual guidance to the 1st years than being kept in and taking the 1st years to bed!

WATERFORDI applied to Phonsie’s data officer Michelle O’Riordan.Surprisingly for me, Phonsie’s girl also operated transparency and I got my whole file from St. John’s College Waterford – 1973 – 1976.The file is very positive and of course I got on well there and was put forward for ordination.There was a glowing report from the PP in Cardiff I had done my diaconate placement with – Canon Philip Dwyer.

Page 3 – pic not uploading”priests of today are doing their best to do away with the collar and appear in all kinds of fancy clothing, some go as far as saying the collar will be done away with all together. Pat Buckley is not of this opinion and this tradition should be emphasised to him in his final months with you”

My email to Phonsie

Dear Phonsie,I doubt if you and I will ever be on each others Christmas card lists.But I wanted to commend and thank you for the transparency I experienced when I applied to your data protection officer when I applied for my stored data at Waterford.My years in Waterford and St John’s were among the happiest of my life.John Shine was one of the best friends I ever had.Pat

SUBJECT ACCESS REQUEST REFERENCE: DP/SAR/B1/19I confirm that we have carried out a search within the Diocesan records and archives and I have endeavoured to identify information held which directly or indirectly relates to you and therefore, may fall within the remit of a subject access request. I have prepared the following table to summarise my enquiries: –


Dear Data Access,

I am happy to receive the documents from section one scanned.

I have received data from two other Irish diocese and they contained all my correspondence with the bishop and archbishop!

Can I ask you for FULL disclosure please?

I reserve the right to appeal to the Data Commioner.

Bishop Pat Buckley



Alleged child abusers to be allowed interview complainants‘Serious concern’ new Tusla guidelines overly weighted in favour of accused

The new policy guidelines, a copy of which has been seen by The Irish Times, are set to come into force in June, and Tusla social workers are currently receiving training in their implementation.

People under investigation for child abuse, including sexual abuse, will be permitted to personally interview their alleged victims in certain circumstances under new Tusla investigatory procedures.Child protection experts have expressed serious concern that the guidelines, which are contained in the Tusla’s new Child Abuse Substantiation Procedures, are overly weighted in favour of the rights of alleged abusers and risk “re-traumatising”alleged victims of abuse.The new policy guidelines, a copy of which has been seen by The Irish Times, are set to come into force in June, and Tusla social workers are currently receiving training in their implementation.

The introduction of the guidelines follows several legal cases brought against Tusla by individuals investigated over abuse allegations who claim their rights were breached by the agency.Social workers must “stress test” allegations when interviewing complainants, the guidelines state, including by asking if there may be an “alternative explanation” or “misinterpretation on their part” in relation to the allegations.Facilitate suspectsIn some cases social workers should facilitate suspects to “stress test” the allegations themselves by personally questioning complainants or witnesses.


Guidelines for investigating abuse ‘horrifying’, says survivorLegal fears overshadow victims in new Tusla guidelinesOver 200 gardaí begin cybercrime training to speed up online child abuse investigationsIf the complainant is still a child or is a “vulnerable adult”, it would be “generally” inappropriate for them to be questioned by their alleged abuser, the guidelines state.

Tusla defended the guidelines on Monday, stating they were drafted to comply with emerging case law and court directions “in this complex legal area”.

If direct questioning is judged inappropriate, other forms of “stress testing” should be considered, including allowing the suspect to write out questions to be put to the complainant, allowing their solicitor to question the complainant or allowing the suspect to ask questions via videolink.

In some cases a suspect may be allowed to be in the room while questions are put by a social worker, the guidelines state. “Consider using a screen to separate the complainant or witness who is being questioned.”

Tusla staff are instructed that the identity of the alleged victim should be disclosed to the suspect at an early stage, even in cases where the “complainant is at serious risk from the [alleged abuser].

”In most cases alleged abusers should be allowed to tell their employers or partners that they are under investigation before Tusla does so.

In cases not involving “immediate serious risk” to children, the rights of the accused must take precedence over the need to inform third parties of abuse allegations, the guidelines state.

Tusla social workers tasked with substantiating allegations of child abuse should also consider the impact their findings could have on an alleged abuser, including the impact on their employment prospects, their family or on childcare proceedings they are involved in, the document states.

Tusla defended the guidelines on Monday, stating they were drafted to comply with emerging case law and court directions “in this complex legal area”.Alleged abusers are constitutionally entitled “to fair procedure and due process” and Tusla’s guidelines are in line with best practice, a spokeswoman said.


Allowing abusers to question their victims!

The first thought about that is shock!

Could this not be more abuse?

Imagine letting Brendan Smyth question the children he abused?

Imagine letting Maciel question the priests, seminarians and children he abused?

I’m glad they are more or less ruling it out in the case of children and vulnerable adults.

But some victims suffer the fear of running into their abuser all their lives.

Could recovering victims not be sent right back into trauma?

I know there are regular false allegations and miscarriages of justice.

But the police question the victims.

Social workers and other professionals question them.

The victims can be crossexamined in court by the accused’s lawyers.

Do we need another layer of questioning?

What do readers think?



Catholic Church admits moving paedophile Jesuit brother interstate after complaints of sexual abuse


The Catholic Church has admitted it shifted a paedophile Jesuit brother from a prestigious Adelaide school to another in Sydney, despite multiple complaints about his offending.

Key points:

Victor Higgs was found guilty of numerous offences from the 1960s to the 1980s

A review has found he was moved interstate when abuse complaints were made

A prestigious college in Adelaide has apologised for allowing the abuse to occur

Australian Jesuit provincial Father Brian McCoy has announced the findings of an independent review into the movement of Victor Higgs in 1970 from Saint Ignatius’ College, in Athelstone, to Riverview in Sydney.

The former Victorian chief justice Marilyn Warren was appointed to undertake the review in 2018.
Her review found at least three complains were made to the then-rector of Saint Ignatius’ College in Athelstone, Father Frank Wallace SJ, regarding Higgs’s conduct.

It also found at least some of the complaints were conveyed to the-then Provincial, Fr Francis Peter Kelly SJ, prior to the movement of Higgs.
And the complaints were a factor in the decision to move Higgs to Riverview in 1970.

In 2016, Higgs was found guilty of two counts of indecent assault against two students at Saint Ignatius’ College between 1968 and 1970.

Last year he was also found guilty of 16 offences committed against students at Riverview between 1971 and 1981.

College apologises for ‘hurt, suffering and pain’

In a letter from Saint Ignatius’ College principal and rector to parents, caregivers and former students, the school apologised for allowing the abuse to happen.

“That a Jesuit against whom complaints were made was moved from one school to another is a shameful example of how these matters were handled in the past,” the letter said.

“We reiterate our unreserved apology to them that these events were allowed to occur and for the hurt, suffering and pain that resulted.”

Saint Ignatius’ College campus in Athelstone, north-east of Adelaide.(Www.Ignatius.Sa.Edu.Au)
The letter went on to describe the college’s “sincere hope and endeavour” that current guidelines would make sure abuse would never occur again.

“We continue to extend our care and concern to all those who have suffered from past abuse at our school,” it said.

“We remain committed to providing a safe environment for our students and to supporting anyone who may wish to contact us about past abuses.”

‘We are deeply ashamed and sorry’

Fr Brian McCoy also released a statement apologising for the “failings” following the outcome of the review.

He said the abuse of any child was contrary to the teachings of Jesus Christ and Higgs had left the Jesuits in 2001.
He said he hoped the findings would bring some sort of closure or healing to those impacted by Higgs’s actions.

“It is with much sadness and contrition that I acknowledge and apologise for our failings with respect to these events some 50 years ago,” he said.

“We continue to hold those who have been abused in our hearts and in our prayers and extend to them our unwavering support. We are deeply ashamed and sorry.”

Fr Brian said the Australian Jesuit Province would continue to review the report and consider any further action that needed to be taken.


So, the Jesuits were at the “move the paedo about” stunt in Aussie.

And if they were at it there they were at it everywhere.

The Jesuits are no different than all the other dioceses and orders.

Put the church first and ignore the victim.

No.part of the RCC will ever successfully police itself.

It will have to be done by the civil authorities.

I have a friend feeling that the Aussies will lead the way.

Well done to them.

The Irish Jesuits currently have an opportunity to show us how just and open they are as they handle the current complaints against Father Paul Prior.



January 29, 2020 by

In March/April of 2019, the Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate (CARA) administered a survey to seminarians concerning the sex abuse scandals. Fifteen questions were asked wherein inquiries were made to the seminarians about whether or not they’ve seen or heard of sexual abuse in their seminaries. The results of the survey were published in September, 2019.

The last question in this survey asked “in your view, what are the most important steps, policies, or reforms that Catholic seminaries and houses of formation should take or implement to make seminary training safe and free from sexual harassment, abuse, and misconduct?” Seminarians were invited to “answer in as much depth as you wish.” The following essay is a response written and submitted by one participant in the survey. He has asked to remain anonymous in order to protect his vocation. The text has been slightly edited since its submission in order to provide some clarity and further information.
I think that this survey is one step in addressing a problem. Respectfully, it does not go far enough. The problem within seminary formation programs is not just with sexual abuse and/or harassment. Such things are a symptom of a much larger systemic problem. I am speaking of formators’ authority and control over seminarians who are expected to obey them.

Since the Second Vatican Council, the Church has had to contend with many powerful and influential forces both from within as well as from without. I cannot say that all of the reforms of the Council concerning priestly formation have been implemented well. Confusion has reigned over the last several decades within priestly formation. Some programs are better than others but not all are equal in understanding, vision and implementation. One of the problems within formation programs is the relationship between authority, control and obedience.

Prior to Vatican II, there was a type of obedience that was expected of men who presented themselves for formation. Formators were, generally speaking, good at their duty and were upstanding men. The norms of the Church were followed (again, generally speaking) and there was an order to things that was respected and upheld. Since the Council, however, that obedience has been turned on its head owing to the various theological and ideological trends that arose in the Council’s wake.

For example, one area of formation that has suffered is human formation. Whereas Pius XII (in Sedes Sapientiae III) clarified that human formation was quite important, the “sanctification of the supernatural soul holds first place in the whole program of formation.” Now, however, much is made of human formation, not so much sanctification, and there are varying interpretations of what the “human” in “human formation” means. Sometimes, it refers to an authentic issue that needs to be addressed. Other times, it could be said to a seminarian because the formator is projecting his own issues upon the seminarian.

Formators engaging in such projection is an issue unto itself. Sometimes, the seminarian is completely unaware that it is being done. Others who do know what is going on can fall into one of two categories: 1) those who defend themselves, and 2) those who do not defend themselves.

If the seminarian falls into the first category, he is labeled “rigid” or “not docile.” Formators tend to be territorial and will not take lightly a challenge. The seminarian is made to be the “problem.” Sometimes, there is a form of psychological abuse that is used here. Labels like the aforementioned will be recorded in the seminarian’s file and that file is used as a psychological weapon, i.e. “you don’t want this in ‘your file’” or “this will go in ‘your file.’” “Your file” is here understood as a monolithic reality that will either canonize or demonize the seminarian.

This activity can be very damaging to a seminarian. The formation system is particularly dependent upon “word of mouth” from formators and one particularly damning comment (just or not) can hound a seminarian for his entire formation path, or even later. God help any manly seminarian who either questions or speaks against the emasculation. They are told that such is a “formation issue” which must be dealt with promptly. Counseling may even be recommended. Against such things, a seminarian has little to no defense. Their goal is to become a priest of Jesus Christ and this is jeopardized if he defends himself.

Being characterized as the “problem” can be devastating to the psychological well-being of the seminarian. He might begin to doubt his perception of reality: “Maybe I have a blind spot and did something wrong that I didn’t see?” Certainly, there are genuine times when a blind spot reveals itself in a seminarian’s formation. I am speaking, though, of when the system is abused by narcissistic, gas-lighting formators whose observations are not rooted in reality. In such instances, they act out, more often than not, from a sense of feeling threatened in some way.

Now, for seminarians who do not defend themselves, they are not much better off than those who defend themselves. They survived the initial matter, but at what cost? The cost is their manhood as they’ve been emasculated, schooled in the art of self-preservation. Men in formation are expected to obey blithely their formators, even if said men know better. What happens, then, when this obedience is towards something questionable? Two examples come to mind.

First, there is a case of a seminarian who witnessed pornography on a priest-formator’s computer. The incident was quickly covered up, denied even, and the seminarian was sent to counseling. He actually obeyed. The local Ordinary of the seminary was “indirectly” informed of the pornography by another priest. That matter was presented in hypothetical terms: “if X happened, how should it be handled?” Doing this afforded plausible deniability to the Ordinary.

Second, in ideology, there is a very popular expectation for seminarians to be “pastoral” and able to “reach people where they are at.” These phrases, in and of themselves, do point to some authentic realities within priestly ministry. The problem is when an imbalance is created by a one-sided emphasis upon them. There is more that is left unsaid, such as their relation to truth, beauty, goodness and how to lead the people (that seminarians desire to serve) to these transcendentals.

Needless to say, seminary formators hold all the keys—they have all the power and control—and can make life a living nightmare for a seminarian. Some formators may make it their goal to “break” a seminarian, i.e. remove any and all undesirable tendencies/attitudes deemed unfit for priestly ministry. This is good with respect to uprooting vice, but what about a seminarian dealing with a narcissistic, gas-lighting formator?

The effort to “break” a seminarian manifests itself differently, but a popular method has been the “pastoral year.” During this year, a seminarian is sent to a location believed to be the best arena for his “breaking” to take place. If the reason for the “breaking” concerns “orthodoxy,” for example, the seminarian is typically sent to a more “liberal” parish where one of two things will happen. He will either 1) be scandalized into discerning out of the seminary, or 2) somehow survive and demonstrate docility to his formators.

A gas-lighting narcissistic formator can leave an impression on those under his guidance that in order to be a good priest, one must maintain the status quo.

This thought is impressed by blind obedience and power-posturing through various means such as sarcasm, emotional abuse and/or sexual abuse. This, then, can lead the seminarian to see that he must not only go along to get along, but that he must also compromise his masculinity, faith and ideals in a self-destructive way so that he can get ordained and further his career within the presbyterate.

For example, there was seminarian A who was accused of assaulting another seminarian (B). The accusation was false and another seminarian (C) had direct knowledge that it was false. When seminarian C went to the formation authorities, he was told in so many words that if he wanted to have a career, he’d keep his mouth shut. This seminarian was ordained a few years later and is now pursuing a doctorate within the context of a fairly posh assignment within his Diocese.

Such compromises lead not only to a clericalist view of self and the Church, but also to a lack of the virtue of integrity by which one humbly seeks to live out the faith that one professes with one’s lips through one’s way of life. The undermining of the virtue of integrity then leads to the scandal that we see before us in our current age through figures such as the former Cardinal McCarrick and others. It becomes the primary roadblock to evangelizing souls at the parish level.

Some seminarians put up with such nonsense from formators in the thought that “I’ll just keep my mouth shut until the alb and stole hang loose.” Such thinking, however, shows the danger of this personal abuse because the seminarian seeks to please those in authority and has no supernatural faith and no relationship with Christ. Pope Francis himself encourages seminarians to speak up. Otherwise, then, a culture of enablement is created by which homosexuality within the priesthood and priestly sexual abuse, among other things, can then thrive.

By remaining silent, therefore, is the seminarian being formed in virtue and to be an effective preacher unto the salvation of souls? Is he truly growing in his baptismal and priestly identity as an Alter Christus? No, he has become skilled in the worldly art of self-preservation, not in the preaching of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Such a man of self-preservation will care more for the opinions of the people and will bow to them than to the Lord of Heaven and earth, the Just Judge.

Most seminarians simply desire to trust their formators because these seminarians cannot imagine the alternative. I know this because I have witnessed such people. They are unwilling to see the unpleasant side to the reality facing us today. For my part, trust is earned because of what I know as well as have seen, witnessed and experienced. I have been privileged to know some very holy people. I have also known some very evil ones.

I am convinced that when one has saints as formators, then one’s priestly formation will take on that character. If, however, the seminarian has narcissists and gas-lighters for formators, then I shudder against the monstrosities that shall arise.


This is deep and penetrating analysis by the seminarian.

There is currently a mighty crisis in RC seminaries.

There is the issue of thoroughly unsuitable formators.

And there is the issue of thoroughly unsuitable seminarians.

The system is profoundly broken.

And people, especially good and genuine seminarians, are being seduced, traumatised and destroyed.

The good seminarians leave.

The compromised ones thrive and become problem priests.

Promiscuous homosexuality is at the very core.




Former seminary priest speaks out on homosexual subculture and exposes the Irish McCarrickFollowing the dark revelations of the McCarrick scandal, former seminary formator, Father David Marsden, decided it was time to go public on the real reason he resigned from Maynooth and why he remains deeply concerned about the presence of a powerful gay subculture in the national seminary.Referendum a forbidden topicThe year is 2015 and debate in Ireland is dominated by the State’s plan to change the constitution to allow pairs of the same sex to “marry” – with such a blatant assault on God’s plan for marriage one might expect the Church to be vocal in promoting the natural law – yet despite the intensity of the campaign there was silence from much of the hierarchy – priests and bishops did not speak – afraid, unsure or compromised – we do not know. But the silence was deafening.
Even in the heart of Catholic learning – the Pontifical University in Maynooth there was silence apart from one lone clerical voice supported by the small group of orthodox seminarians left in the controversial seminary.During a meeting of the seminary council and heads of faculty, months before the referendum Fr Marsden suggested that the seminary hold a Novena or Holy Hour or consider some other prayerful devotion so the seminarians and college staff could unite in prayer for a faithful outcome . Instead of support his idea was dismissed by the President – it was clear that the other priests did not want to do anything spiritual or temporal to defend the teaching of the Church.

In fact Father Marsden was left with the impression that many of the staff preferred to remain silent and not even mention the referendum never mind speak out against it. The staff dining room became a place where the referendum was never mentioned.In the run up to the same sex “marriage” referendum Father David Marsden delivered two powerful homilies in the seminary in which he spoke out strongly in defence of marriage between a man and woman and denouncing from the pulpit the perverted notion that people of the same sex could marry.It was after the second homily that he was called into the President’s office and informed that a complaint had been made against him but the identity of the individual was not revealed to him. Fr. Marsden strongly suspects it was a friend of a homosexual seminarian who made the complaint as the Mass was on a Sunday morning and therefore open to all the students from Maynooth University.Culture of fear: staff afraid to speak outIt was during this meeting that the President aired a concern that Fr. Marsden was becoming a ‘one issue person’ which implied he was becoming anxious that he was speaking out too much about the referendum and homosexuality in general. Fr. Marsden responded by saying the only reason he could be called a ‘one issue person’ in the seminary was because he was the only person saying anything about the referendum or homosexuality. The other staff members were either afraid to speak out or were homosexual themselves!Despite the opposition from the staff Father Marsden received much support and was admired by many of the seminarians. But he was also aware of an active and vocal gay subculture operating freely in the seminary. When the referendum was passed this group became emboldened and had no fear in ensuring the others knew they were gay, sexually active and in the seminary with the full knowledge and support of their bishops.Against this backdrop the seminarians were becoming concerned – the seminary in which they were training to become Catholic priests not only seemed to take a very liberal view of Catholic teaching but also encouraged a gay subculture to develop in the seminary. Exasperated and at the point of desperation one of the seminarians decided enough was enough and decided to write an anonymous letter to the Bishop’s Conference pleading with the bishops to intervene. The letter named seven active homosexual seminarians.It is understood that this letter was sent back from the bishops office to the President of the seminary Monsignor Hugh Connolly but rather than take action to investigate the claims in the letter the seminary council began a witch hunt to discover the author. In the end a completely innocent seminarian was accused based on the fact that he had reported two seminarians – one of them his close friend – when he found them in bed together. No proof was given he was simply accused and thrown out of the seminary.Notorious seminarian threatens Fr. MarsdenFather Marsden challenged one of the most notorious homosexual seminarians about his disordered lifestyle but was given an arrogant response “my bishop knows, the seminary council knows, my spiritual director knows – none of them have a problem with it so neither should you” – in other words shut up this is none of your business. It was after this encounter that Fr. Marsden knew it was now not possible to conduct proper formation in the seminary as such widespread dissent of Church’s teaching was blatant amongst the seminary council and the spiritual directors. It was at this point that he wrote a letter to Mons. Connolly tendering his resignation.

When Father Marsden tried to raise the problems he was seeing in the seminary with the Church authorities the response was to not only ignore his concerns but to ridicule him for raising them in the first place. He recalls one very high ranking cleric stating that “you see gays under the bed!” I wonder what he would think of that statement now in the wake of the McCarrick scandal.In the end Father Marsden could no longer work in the seminary and retain his integrity so he chose to resign from what he describes as “institution riddled by systemic disobedience to Church teaching”It was reported in the secular press during the summer of 2016 that the reason for his resignation was a conflict of theological outlook but this was incorrect. There certainly was a huge divergence of theological opinion with many of Fr Marsden’s friends being amazed at how long he managed to stay in the seminary. It was the issue of homosexuality which brought things to a head. The seminary has long been a ‘cesspool of liberal theology and heterodoxy’ and so those few staff members, down through the years, who maintained a fidelity to the Magisterium were often isolated and subtly persecuted.Dictatorship of blandnessFr. Marsden describes the model of formation in Maynooth as ‘a dictatorship of blandness’ meaning that any sort of vibrant or orthodox expressions of the Faith on the part of seminarians were harshly dealt with and suppressed. In fact the term that was banded about on a regular basis during staff meetings was ‘shadow formation’. This referred to students who went about studying orthodox theology from online blogs and media sites unconnected to the seminary as ‘the tripe they were getting served up by the theology faculty was in most cases utter drivel.’ Father Marsden explained ‘It is my honest assessment that the formation and academic staff in Maynooth are either liberal or homosexual and a significant number are both.’ The liturgy department seemed to be particularly infected with these two issues. One staff member was infamously called a ‘Bin man’ by a seminarian as he hated wearing a Roman Collar and was often found sitting in Pugin Hall endlessly gossiping about seminarians.However it was towards the end of our discussion that Father Marsden informed me of his most worrying discovery – the Irish version of Father McCarrick. Maynooth has long been a hotbed of dissent from Church teaching where elderly liberal theologians like Enda McDonagh retain a high degree of influence on the teaching staff. Another such priest who lived in the seminary until his death last year was a priest of Meath diocese Father Ronan Drury –

reading his obituaries and the praise heaped on him by bishops and the current President of the Seminary, Father Michael Mullaney

one might picture Father Drury as a learned and jovial priest, popular with all in the seminary which was his home for 42 years – he was Professor of Homiletics there since 1977 until his death last year. He was also editor of the liberal Furrow magazine for 40 years.The Irish McCarrick?

Kitty DruryHowever Fr Marsden discovered a much darker and secretive side to Fr Drury – known also by his nickname “Kitty” – needless to say he was a notorious figure among the gay subculture in the college. His behaviour was such an open secret among the students that even the normally cautious Mons. Connolly felt it necessary to inform Fr Marsden that a credible allegation of molestation had been made against Fr Drury by an individual – the complaint was regarding inappropriate touching by Fr Drury of this person. Later, a priest also confided in Fr Marsden alleging that Drury had molested him as a young and vulnerable first year seminarian.

How many more people did Fr Drury molest, were other complaints made against him and what did the authorities do with the complaints. At the very least Monsignor Connolly should have suspended this homosexual predator.

The Catholic Voice would like to encourage any of his victims to come forward with the possibility of speaking in confidence about any abuse they experienced during their time in the seminary. Please use the contact email: and we will listen to you in the strictest confidence.A place like Maynooth is a playground for the likes of Fr Drury where he had daily one to one access to young male students. The question for the authorities is who knew, was his bishop informed and if Mons. Connolly was concerned about his behaviour what did he do to protect seminarians.Why was Fr Drury allowed to continue living there with open access to vulnerable young men. It is evident from Father Marsden’s testimony that an active and secretive homosexual sub culture is being allowed to thrive in the seminary with the approval of the ecclesial authorities – some of whom Fr Marsden suspects are also same sex attracted themselves.At the time of going to press numerous attempts were made to contact the various bishop trustees of the college but none felt it important enough to return our calls. The current President of Maynooth was also contacted but he refused to answer any questions about Fr Drury’s deviant behaviour. The circle of secrecy protects it’s own.But the faithful will not accept cowardice or silence and demand an open and transparent investigation into the various scandals which have afflicted Maynooth for at least 30 years – were payments made, who authorised the culture of cover up and secrecy.The only sure way to end the disease in Maynooth is to send the remaining small number of seminarians to the Irish College in Rome and to close the seminary for a year or more until such an investigation is carried out and the recommendations from it fully implemented. The long suffering faithful and those seminarians who have been abused and persecuted deserve such transparency or alternatively the seminary should simply close. It is no longer fit for purpose and certainly not a place to send our future priests for formation and parents should do all in their power to dissuade sons from going there. This is a defining moment for the Church in Ireland and decent Catholics should not rest until every bishop stands up and takes direct action to purge the filth from the Church.PAT SAYSThe Gaynooth gay scandal is not new.It has built up over decades.Ledwith with played his part seducing seminarians.

But Ronan Kitty Drury was a big player and seduced many over the years.

Prior is rumoured to be one of his victims?

Any half decent looking young guy entering Maynooth now is sure to have a priest or seminarian’s hand in his jeans within hours or days.