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MY ADVICE FOR FATHERS MIA –  MISSING IN ACTION.

In every diocese in Ireland you have interesting insertions in the clergy section of diocesan websites saying things like:

On sabbatical.

C/O Bishops House.

On further studies.

These statements have often come to be used by Irish bishops to be covers for problem priests.

Priests being investigated by the police, priests accused of sexual and financial misbehaviour and any number of other clerical problems.

Behind this is the plain fact that bishops want to hide the truth about these situations – in fact, to lie.

Clerical abuse and misconduct is in itself a horrific reality.

But bishops lying and covering this abuse and misconduct compounds the wrong and adds abuse and misconduct to abuse and misconduct.

THE DIFFERENT TYPES OF MIA’s.

1. Paedophile priests

Of course it is absolutely clear that when a priest is accused of the abuse of a minor he should immediately step aside for an investigation to be undertaken. While that is happening the accused priest must be regarded as “innocent until proven guilty,”.

While many priests have been found guilty and sentenced there have been other cases of priests being wrongly accused.

2. Priests sexually misbehaving.

We’ve always had cases of priests getting into trouble sexually. In the past a lot of priests had mistresses and made women pregnant. In many of those cases the priests were moved to other parishes and the women treated terribly by bishops.

THE GAY PRIEST PHENOMENON

More recently, as the Roman Catholic Priesthood evolves into a GAY PROFESSION, many of the sexual scandals that have emerged are gay sex scandals.

We’ve had the 2016 Maynooth Gay Scandal with many gay seminarians not proceeding to priesthood.

We’ve had the Kildorrey Gay Altar Sex Scandal involving a now deceased priest and a seminarian.

We’ve had Chris Derwin in Dublin.

We’ve had the Rory, McCamley and McVeigh scandals in Armagh and the Armagh seminarians scandal.

AND there are other serious Armagh scandals in the pipeline.

We’ve had other such scandals in Down and Connor, Derry, Raphoe, killaloe, Cloyne etc.

We’ve had the SILVERSTREAM, MOUNT MELLERARY, ROSCREA AND GLENSTAL scandals – the greatest of which was Abbot Richard Purcell’s attendance at the Boilerhouse Sauna.

CELIBACY AND CHASTITY:

At the centre if the sex scandals, including the gay one, is the RCC’s teachings and rules about celibacy and chastity for monks.

They ORDAIN you – only on the promise that you will be celibate and chaste and never have sex.

Technically you are not really allowed to have sex with yourself.

You take a public promise never to have sex.

If you do you are breaking your solemn promise.

And that means you are being a hypocrite.

Until the RCC rules change, it would be more authentic for a man who intends having sex not to seek to be a priest or a monk.

And if you find you can’t keep your intended promises – then you should do the honourable thing and leave.

If you lead a double life you cannot be spiritually authentic, either within or without.

And you are accepting all the privileges and benefits if office on the basis if a lie.

AND, it is very likely that you will be caught out, exposed and shamed.

And that will be hurtful not only to you, but to your family, your friends and the people you leadership as pastor.

And you will be at the epicentre if a distressing public scandal.

126 replies on “MY ADVICE FOR FATHERS MIA –  MISSING IN ACTION.”

Given that seminary formation, or lack of formation, keeps coming up I suggest there’s another kind of MIA. This is the type who really shouldn’t have been ordained but is having to make the decision to leave after ordination.
Some of these will be doing this sensibly and honestly, without leading double lives.
Since ‘taking time out to decide if he’s screwed up his life’ would be a slight invasion of privacy on the website, it’s a pity that c/o bishop’s house has come to mean addiction or sexual deviance. Otherwise it could refer to this situation.

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A very balanced “Pat Says” Pat. I agree with all. I am reminded of priests who have been accused of bad things and have been shown not to have done them. Yet I am also reminded of priests who have been wolves in sheeps clothing (Jesus we have known them). I would have sympathy with guys in faithful friendships, not necessarily sexual. I would have no sympathy with guys putting it about, as they say, at all. Priests are human. I am too ugly to have had a mistress (or a master) I am safe to say (joke). But in truthfulness, I am finding this lockdown very lonely. It is making me quite depressed Pat. Feeling very low I must admit. I hope you are not feeling the same way. The wine bottle can be too easy to make friends with to be sure.

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11.25
‘Priests are human.’?
There’s the catch-all…and moral excuse-all.
What a cop-out!
There is no excuse for intentional and chronic morally abherrant behaviour by anyone, including priests in ‘faithful friendships not necessarily sexual’.😕
There IS grace to overcome self. But then, how many priests truly believe this? YOU clearly don’t, otherwise you wouldn’t settle yourself, and everyone else, with half a loaf.
Christ did not settle for half-measures when it came to our redemption; Calvary proves this. Nor must we, otherwise we throw back in his face the self-sacrifice he made, and our chance of redemption.
There is no unfinished business in Heaven: it’s all or nothing with God.

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10:45
Alas your strident tone and tendentious content persuade no one. Remember: the medium is the message. Yours sucks.

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10.45: You are right: THERE IS GRACE TO OVERCOME SELF…Now, why don’t you let us see that GRACE at work in your life.. as your words profoundly disprove your belief or assertion??

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On balance, I’d rather have MC’s usual rants than his occasional vomit-inducing, sickly sweet and sentimental sermonettes. He has no social capital left to persuade others about what is right or wrong or to give his Poundshop version of Thought for the Day.

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12.43, 1.28, 1.31, 1.44

All the above are examples … classic ones … of people who have thrown in the towel in terms of grace and redemption; at least three of them are priests. Fearing Calvary, they have settled for spiritual mediocrity, the quintessential quality of Roman Cathoilc priesthood not just nowadays, but always.

Of course, their protests here betray their surrender…not to God, but to their lack. And you can bet their congregations, starved of graced inspiration, are following their lameduck example.

1.28, Jesus was quite strident, when the need arose: when he was faced with the spiritually lukewarm and self-satisfied, people like you, Pharisees, too content in their malaise to stir themselves to anything higher and better. It’s the same old story: evil must always justify its reserve when confronted with good; that’s guilt. Hence, the protests.

Yes, the medium can sometimes be the message, at least a subtext of it; but your ability to read it here is hindered by a disinclination to follow it.

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7.56
So why did the Pharisees, Sadduces and Herodians band together to have him murdered? Because he incited them to…love?😕

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8:29
Jesus encouraged people to love and forgive. He did not incite people to hate.

If people hated him it was because they ignored what he taught.

Incitement to hatred is not only the diametric opposite of Jesus’ teaching. It is a crime.

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10.25
Oh, for heaven’s sake! Read the Gospel. Jesus referred to these people as ‘fools’, ‘whitewashed sepulchres’, as ‘straining a gnat and swallowing a camel’.
When they heard Jesus preach, they knew at times that he was alluding to them unfavourably: ‘…for they perceived that he had spoken this parable against them.’
Jesus’ did not mince his words with these people, and they hated him for it so much that they plotted his death.
Grow up.

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10:59

It’s easy to see why you would wish to twist the gospel narrative in order to justify your frequent incitement to hatred on this blog. It doesn’t wash. Wherever you may choose to seek support for the course of action you pursue, you won’t find incitement to hatred among the attributes of Jesus’ teaching or actions.

He called out wrong and sin. But, he did not promote hatred towards the wrongdoer and sinner. He advocated forgiveness. On the cross he practised what he preached.

Your contention that Jesus incited people to hate is wrong, a mangling of the evidence and immoral.

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But Jesus did incite people to stand up and call out evil.

He called the Pharisees, vipers.

He call Herod, a fox.

Vipers, fox, are very strong words.

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From a Bishop who would be MIA or C/O the Diocesan Office (if they had such things in those days it would likely be likely C/O Bishops House) while taking the Church to Court and ok winning your constant attack on All Clergy missing MIA is horrible as usually.
So can I point out some Clergy C/O Diocesan Offices have been very very hard working Clergy in Big parishes who have retired not always “Bad” Clergy are MIA or C/O Diocesan Offices.

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Totally disingenuous, untruthful and nasty to not point out and make clear that most clergy c/o bishops house are retired men who have given a life time of service to the Church. They may not get treated well in retirement and many have had their income slashed by younger whipper snapper careerist bishops but to class them as sex abusers and deviants because they are simply c/o bishops house is totally wrong and deeply offensive.

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10.26

The innate clericalism of your post is astonishing.

Priests who have given a lifetime of service to the Church’? Away with such archaic notions, because they imply that only priests can serve in this way!

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If you claim to be a priest you cannot claim to be retired. If you are a priest you are a priest. That priests get old and be less able is understandable but not retired.
And if there is such a thing as a retired priest then surely those words can be used rather the questionable c/o Bishops House.

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@11.00am No one claimed to be a Priest. Go back and read the comment slowly and you might learn something, just might. Perhaps a picture book would explain it better for you or join the dots.

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Seeing Stephen Wilson in his Cabin crew attire is much more stimulating than Bruno in his male thong. 👄💞

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This is entirely correct. However, while it’s certainly possible for the RCC to drop the celibacy rule for Latin-rite priests (the other RCC rites have always had married priests), this is absolutely impossible for consecrated religious. “Monks” and “nuns” who do sex are evil hypocrites of the worst kind. If you are one of them, get out now. You are not wanted.

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As I lie here in the wee small hours of sleeplessness, I have been reading Cardinal Cupich of Chicago’s rebuttal of the United States Bishops’ Conference criticism of the new US President in the statement it put out yesterday. This statement, and Cupich’s independent statement, illustrates the culture wars fissure that exists not just within the USA but also within the Catholic Church in the USA. It does seem pretty rigourist and begrudging on the day of the inauguration, at a time of great national turmoil, for the US bishops to be concentrating on their perceived differences with Biden rather than trying to find common ground. Instead, they talk pretty much only of differences of emphasis on such things as sexuality, gender, abortion, etc, the usual culture wars issues. Cupich isn’t too impressed by the US bishops’ statement. I reckon Pope Francis won’t be either. Anyhow, while looking at what Cupich said, in his statements feed on the Chicago Archdiocese website (https://www.archchicago.org/en_US/statements), and scrolling down, I was astounded at how often Cupich has to issue statements concerning the removal from ministry on one of his priests because of sexual / abuse complaints. Including the case of two of his priests on holiday together in Florida arrested for having oral sex with each other in a car in broad daylight ! It appears that so regularly does Cupich have to issue these statements that there is even a formulaic template that is used ! How depressing and dispiriting it must be for Cupich having to deal so regularly with this stuff. I wonder, if like me, he ever asks himself: “Why ? What is about Catholic priests that so many of them get themselves in to this kind of trouble?”. I guess that touches on the kinds of topics that are addressed in this blog so regularly – the kind of priests we get, their training, the celibacy issue, homosexualisation of the clerical culture, living double lives, dishonesty, dysfunction, etc. etc. I feel sorry for Cupich having to deal with all this shit with monotonous regularity. Mind you, he should be asking those questions, and coming up with a solution, if he wants things to be better. Surely ? And yet, I don’t see that debate going on amongst bishops. So, let’s continue to have the debate here, then !

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Cupich is one of McCarrick’s “boys” of course. No surprises among which of the American hierarchy are disgruntled at the USCCB statement . Cardinal “Night Night Baby I Love You” Tobin is also miffed. Hell won’t be full until they are all in it.

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5.21: If Michael Voris was an atheist or an Anglican, a policeman or Garda, you wouldn’t refer to him as an “ex poof”!! Just because he is a Catholic….You are homophobic and simply an ignorant, ugly racist. Pat should not give homophobes any platform….

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At 8.35, it is how Voris refers to himself. Kind of. He says he was cured, by JC, of his homosexuality.
You might belueve this crap, but I don’t.

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Mother and Baby Homes not going away any time soon. UN interested now focusing on human rights, illegal adoptions and fake birth certs. Commission has gone dark

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Just listening to liveline it sure isn’t. Commission report has glaring omissions, McAleese has made an idiot of herself yet again.

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It was a business that the church tendered for and ran as cheaply as possible to make a profit and with the additional profit to be made from selling babies.

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5.07
Doncha just love missin’ the point?☺
Doncha?😀
THEY SHOULD NOT HAVE BEEN SELLING BABIES IN THE FIRST PLACE. THEY WEREN’T THEIRS TO SELL.😠

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I remember a bit gossip in the comments section about a queen suddenly going missing from an oratory in Oxford and speculating where she would drop anchor next, so to speak. Turns out she’d only gone to York to establish another oratory along with some other old queens. There was no interest whatsoever in her after that.

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Mmmm, that sounds like an overly sanitised version of what happened. If he had only gone to York to establish a new Oratory, why did his sending Oratory not say so at the time ? They could have saved them, and us, a huge load of speculation and wondering. No, there were some issues surrounding this Oratories; yes, he has re-emerged; but note that he is being kept very much in the shadows still. Except for a few cooking programmes with Fr Daniel !

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Exactly. A totally different situation when it was announced that Robert Byrne and a couple of others were transferring from Birmingham to set up the Oxford Oratory. Daniel simply went MIA from Oxford where he had been a very prominent Provost, though he continued to be listed as Parish Priest, even though there was neither sight nor sound of him. He didn’t officially resurface at York until a considerable time later, and then only very gingerly. Whatever happened, I hope things have worked out for him. Maybe it is unkind and unfair to keep alluding to his case, but it is absolutely typical of the way the RCC operates with a lack of accountability which would be quite unacceptable in any other organization.

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I cannot think of any employer who posts publicly the circustances of sick staff, or those suspended or in difficulty or trouble (their verson of the so-called MIA) so why should the Church allow private personnel matters to be disclosed and have priests treated like carrion for the blog vultures?

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5.12
The bishops are lying when they make those declarations. ‘LYING’. What syllable of the word don’t you understand?😕
Aren’t these Christ-betrayers meant to be christians?

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I must admit, Bp Pat, I prefer scandals associated with the “gay priest phenomenon.” I like stories with… well, let’s just say, a bit ginger in them.
OAP

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If I might be permitted a mild diversion from the never-ending story of MIA clergy, the title ‘Monseigneur’ belongs to the Ancien Régime in France where it was a mode of address to the nobility and royal princes, specifically the Dauphin. It was also used to bishops, and still is among the more traditionally minded, so equivalent to ‘My Lord’. It is therefore not the same as the rather meaningless ecclesiastical title ‘Monsignor’ despite its desirability among clergy keen on acquiring a whole new wardrobe – a good example of this kind of pretension which, I think 10:36 alluding to, is the absurd Keith Newton of the Ordinariate.

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Never heard of this blog till last night.
Usually read CTS.
I hear the Three Amigos are centre stage Awesome.
Miss Lear, Marigold and the Princess or Queen Ina De Camp AKA Mis Jean Brodie.
Memories Memories Memories.

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11:09

You’re such liar, you’ve haunted this blog for years. You forgot to mention yourself Mother Teresa, the nightmare of all Bishops, Archbishops and Papal Nuncio’s!

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Mother Teresa a Saint of Our times God Bless Saint Teresa.
Well know to help the sick , blind, marginalised, hungry and the poor.
The Saint for the people of the gutter who sadly had misfortunes in Life.
As Father Wingerden and Father Wall said just say a Prayer for the attackers.
God Bless

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I had a look at the diocesan on line list of clergy this morning for my home diocese. It is amazing the number of detached / semi-detached / care of / on sick leave / on sabbatical / retired before time priests / at HM’s pleasure there are. Almost as many as in active service. No matter how this might point to a malaise within the clergy ranks, it also exacerbates the dearth of clergy available to minister. We have known for long that we are going to hit a crunch point soon where there will not be enough clergy to fill the slots, if only because of the bare trickle of new vocations and genuine retirements and deaths. This new phenomenon of “c/o” and its various iterations is only going to speed up the process. The cliff edge is only feet away. So, what happened to the promised springtime of vocations we used to hear about ? Or is that still to come ?! In the meantime, some bishops are resorting to the Third World to fill the slots and to replace their mad / bad / sick and all other absent clergy categories. And are we talking about this, My Dear Lord Bishops….? Nope !

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And are they discussing the future in all those zombie parishes with elderly doddery priests who MUST say their three Sunday Masses because “so-and-so will lapse if I don’t”, where the number of communicants has dropped below 250, there are no young people, the “parish stalwarts” contain bone-headed racists -and there are outraged threats of violence when the church is threatened with closure, because no money has been spent on maintenance for years? We are not talking about old eejits who love the Latin and the Extraordinary Form because it’s the young who want those nowadays, but living-dead parishes still devoted to the rinky-dinky rubbish liturgical music churned out in the early Seventies.

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11.10
Are you blind?
Promised springtime of vocations?😕 You make the falling numbers of priests seem an impending crisis, as if the gates of Heaven are about to shut.
I am ceaselessly amazed at the brazen clericalism on this blog.
Did it never cross your mind that we don’t need priests for salvation? Our redemption was won, and sealed, by Christ.
Priesthood was never intended by Jesus, and its existence is contrary to his will. No wonder the Church is in existential crisis…because of priests. You yourself note the growing numbers of these people under serious moral shadows.
Away with the lot of them!
The sooner we are rid of these men, the sooner the Church can return to its Nazarene roots, comprising simple communities WITHOUT a clerical hierarchy.

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At 12:19pm If priesthood was never intended by Christ then why did He call 12 apostles and why did He send out the 72? Why did He tell them to go and teach all nations until He returns? Why did He not stay on earth? Everyday you repeat this claptrap because of your own bitterness. Everyday your toxic lies and dysfunction verbalised. You need to get over yourself. I was kicked out of Maynooth too but I got a life. You spend your time sniping anonymously on a blog. How fulfilling for you.

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9.24
Er, I don’t see the logic of your argument…probably because it lacks such.
What has Jesus’ sending out his disciples to do with Roman Catholic priesthood? Were these guys (and likely galls, too) priests? No, they weren’t. So what the hell point are you trying to make?
By the way, I wasn’t kicked out of Maynooth; I left of my own accord. But my critics here prefer the lie that you have peddled. Name me if you are convinced that I was forced to leave the seminary. If you think you know this much, then you will be able to name me. 😃

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2:19pm

Unfortunately you don’t live up to your namesake, you’re usually known as “The Beast” sadly the only only link is you’re from the gutters yourself. The poor priests you keep mentioning are well aware of your mental health issues and are praying for you. You’ll have more than enough to occupy yourself, when you get a visit from the Compliance Officers who will be visiting you soon.

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There are some clergy who get out when they can because they just despair at what is happening in the Church, what has happened already, and the bleak future. Who wants to be associated with clergy ranks that are despised, reviled and suspect ? Who wants to be subject to episcopal whim ? Who wants to be in continual receipt of mediaeval patronage in order to keep body and soul together ? There are plenty other places one can minister effectively out with the Roman Catholic Church, you know !

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When a priest goes MIA do lay people have any rights under canon law – similar to say a Subject Access Report to know the reasons why – the Omertà surrounding this issue a typical – he’s on study leave, he’s taking time out or it’s his story to tell or he’s off on the missions overseas, – none of these answers satisfy and clearly are intended to obsfuscate and cloak – lay people are drawn into this web by being rebuffed with these excuses – surely the lay people who contribute financially to a parish/diocese have some right under canon law: Canon John Gilbert, MIA and Eddie Clare MIA and Joe Quigley (on sick leave for years now we learn on remand before sentencing at HMP) – all senior priests in the Archdiocese of Birmingham – also Fr Graham Gillian, Clifton or Fr Peter Norton – where are they? What happened? Why the Omerta? They are public figures, community leaders etc. They seek them, here there and everywhere and yet one day the truth will out!!

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11.18

Rights for lay people under Canon Law?😑 You’re having a laugh, right?😅

Dear God! Don’t you yet get it? The RCC is a medieval absolute monarchy, and YOU are a subject of a bishop in communion with the Bishop of Rome. You have NO rights.

These people see your only use as a fatted calf that can feed their ventures.

Anyone who donates even one penny to this evil institution, with its bishops, is complicit in their evil.

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John Gilbert is now listed as ‘retired’. Can’t be more than early 60s. Disappeared for a long time, then ‘retired’. Odd. Nobody told anything. Eddie Clare, again, just disappeared, leaving Maryvale without a head. Odd, again. You know, they all do themselves a disservice by disappearing with no explanation. It just leads to speculation. Even if there is a reason for it, best to have it out there and dealt with rather than scurrying away and just being silent. I think people would respect that more. We can pretty much cope with anything, and put it in to context, but treating clergy and people like they are mushrooms, kept in the dark and fed shit, is counter-productive. For everybody. Including the MIAs.

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John Gilbert was in the sacristy getting ready to say Mass when the call came to report immediately to Archbishop’s House. He was told not to say the Mass and report ASAP. He was not seen thereafter, and after some couple of years it is suddenly announced that he has
‘retired’. John has a certain in your face self-confidence about him, so for him to go in to the shadows so promptly and completely is very strange. All the same, I wish him well, and hope that he is able to look after himself adequately during his ‘retirement’. I’m imagining that if it were something terrible of the usual categories, it would be with the authorities / courts / police by this stage. Mind you, Quigley was hanging around ‘on sabbatical’, ‘on sick leave’, ‘c/o’ for years before he ended up in court. I hope and trust that’s not the case with John G, for his sake and for all our sakes. As @1:37 said, we would prefer to know rather than be kept in the dark. Not for salacious reasons, but just so that we can understand it, offer help, support, or do whatever we could to help the situation and individuals concerned.. This way, we are just left wondering and not knowing what we can do.

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It would likely be Confidential but worth asking the Dioceses concerned and say you will be contacting the Congregation of Clergy.
Some retired Priests have C/O the Dioceses as they do not want kind people bringing gifts and asking for masses to be said.
A big one for retired Clergy is when someone’s loved one dies they say Oh father you did my xxx funeral and so on then he feels guilty and does the Requiem.
But I agree they should make a difference retired and c/o Diocesan Offices or MIA.

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Clerical Child Abuse
Institutional Cover Up
Mother and Baby Scandal
All of the above are Crimes Against Humanity because of the sheer scale of the victims and seriousness of the crimes – should be tried at The Hague and sentenced like at Nuremberg after the war – systematic rape and murder clear breach of human rights and human dignity- true it would take years and then the Truth and Reconciliation Commission to follow – justice is a bitch when it catches up with you!! You can run but you can’t hide for ever!!

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It is no surprise when you consider his wonderful qualities. He will follow in Tartaglia’s footsteps.

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I have just heard a very beautiful sermon from Bishop Hugh Gilbert. He spoke humbly and with truth. A wonderful Archbishop in waiting.

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It certainly was scripted and surprised he mentioned Edinburgh KOB.
Thought at the end Father Gerard would have said something and No Thank you to no one not even Archbishop Philip’s personal minder.

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Thank you 3;57. That will put that smart ignoramus at 1;52 in their place. How dare they try to correct Mammy.

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How much more money will Eamon Martin use for the rehabilitation and inpatient facilities for his compromised Seminarian and Priests.

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Xxxxx is a inpatient in a specific facility in the UK which is for compulsory behavior disorders. its very sad. I hope Xxxxx can overcome this period of tribulation.

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I know the meaning of and spell funereal correctly. I will not give way to bullying.

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Where is Deaf Guy, I miss his wisdom and insightfulness. He should be made a regular contributor

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3.24pm
LOL. I don’t have the wisdom and incisiveness, insights of rcc as Magna Carta and some others such as MMM for athestist views which might be interesting from another perspective. All I have is the layman view as I try to give my 2 cents that’s all.

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Disappointed that you find Magna Carta to have wisdom and incisiveness. The same old drivel and hatred copied and pasted on a daily basis is hardly wisdom from MC.
There is no comparison between MC and MMM. The latter being wise without personal attacks. I may not agree with his aetheistic views but I respect him and agree with him on his social work comments. MC is simply a ranter and raver with nothing constructive to say.
Garngad Lad

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The thing is DG, that you GIVE your 2 cents worth rather than try to take or detract from others. In so giving you make a positive contribution to the blog, and we take something positive from it too.
Thank you.
MMM

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Thing is DG, you GIVE your 2 cents worth rather than take or detract from others.
Thanks.
MMM

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12.26pm

Funny because I could have sworn Part 1 of the 1983 Code of Canon Law has a section, the first section, in fact, called The Obligations and Rights of the Lay Christian Faithful. Turns out we do have rights after all!!

Your presumptive- I am neither a subject of a bishop, a queen or the state – I’m a free man, a citizen of the world!!

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4.10
Scroll back and read again my comment at 12.26. This was a response to the poster at 11.18, ‘Private Detective’. He had asked: ‘Surely the lay people who contribute financialky to a parish/diocese have some right under canon law?’ The question concerned whether the laity, under this law, had any right(s) to know the truth about priests who go MIA for less-than-transparent reasons.
Had you actually read those parts of the Code of Canon Law you referred to instead of just relying on your vague and inaccurate, er, swearing, you would have learned that the laity have absolutely no such right(s), as I correctly stated in my post at 12.26.

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2.20pm

John Gilbert was – maybe still is – a Canon of the Chapter – he enjoyed being the MC at prestigious services – he was a big player in the Lourdes pilgrimages – he is a clerical youngster at early 60s – mention his whereabouts and the clergy run for cover coughing and spluttering – ‘retired’ my arse – pushed, jumped, mutual agreement, who knows – this much is true don’t ask after the MIA it’s like rattling a hornets nest or a rattle snake!! There’s more to the John Gilbert, Eddie Clare story than meets the eye – but God help you if you mention them – it’s as if they never existed!! Weird!!

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In many ways I don’t really have an interest in John Gilbert or Eddie Clare personally. They are only names. I wish them well, wherever they are, if they are MIA because of illness, loss of faith, some misdemeanour which really doesn’t amount to much, but which is hugely magnified in the current climate. As long as they haven’t done anything against the law – and then the law should take its course – I don’t really bother about what they have done. What I do bother about is the lack of transparency, honesty, openness. clarity. I understand all of this has to be balanced against the interests of privacy, personal rights etc, but the RCC does seem to go to the extreme and just pull down the shutters. That makes things worse, I think. When you ask clergy about these things, and they clam up, as Private Detective has said, it is more to do, I think, with their own fear of being seen to speak out of place and against the ‘line to take’ issued by the VG and the Bishop. In the Birmingham case, + Longley really should be a bit more forthcoming with the people and parishes / institutions who had connections to these men. If it’s sub judice then fine, they can’t say anything. I doubt in these cases if that is the issue. If it is the case then they need to say it, then people will understand. Rather, I think it’s just an ingrained culture of silence, saying nothing, denying, hoping it will go away, as well as an attitude that it\s nothing to do with the laity. They could do with some serious media and public relations help in how to manage these issues. I would never have got away with such ham fisted and amateur public relations stuff in may world of work. We’d have been bankrupt pretty quickly. So, I would suggest in the interests of not ending up existentially no more, that they – ie. the RCC,Bishops, VGs etc.- up their game pronto and start to talk to the world and us, the laity, like we’re grown ups.

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If priests are on more-or-less public duty, list them; in between times perhaps they don’t need to be listed; whether it is rest (during which they are still praying for us) or what it is (and early retirement is usually quite a proper matter), aspects of the old “diocesan directory” design have outgrown their usefuless; few people bought them when they were the usual source of information and there were so many priests (who in fact didn’t matter much to laity) a bit of variety didn’t matter; now there are so few it’s all about what they each & every one might be up to, just when so much concern has been caused. (Serving clergy and officers should be able to access the expanded version.) I’ve known priests be away for a genuine rest. (I think Pat is especially referring specifically to a certain category in certain dioceses.) BTW there ARE also serving clergy who aren’t listed anywhere.

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In his homily at today’s funeral mass for Archbishop Tartaglia in Glasgow Bishop Hugh Gilbert speaking of Ab Philip said of him ‘he was not a self advertising man’
Perhaps another Scots bishop , who seems to have an irresistible attraction to the camera, should take note!

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The first time that I saw the term of ‘MIA’ was when I saw the movie named ‘spotlight’. These Boston journalists spotted something like priests names missing in directories. Hence the term MIA. I didnt know that rcc used these a lot. That’s where it all started for me re rcc secretive archaic practices. There was one women in Boston, who was driving her car with radio turned on. It was blaring with cardinal law and the abuses so forth. She was on way to the church for her child baptism but when she heard that news of cardinal law and abuses from the radio. She then turned her car around and headed home with her baby. Another opportunity lost for RCC including money. Rcc preached about having more children which I didn’t understand at first long ago. Now I know it was money on their minds – more kids on pew could mean more money on their church money collection et al

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The actual rights of laity in canon law are barely worth mentioning:
Can. 224 In addition to those obligations and rights which are common to all the Christian faithful and those which are established in other canons, the lay Christian faithful are bound by the obligations and possess the rights which are enumerated in the canons of this title.
Can. 225 §1. Since, like all the Christian faithful, lay persons are designated by God for the apostolate through baptism and confirmation, they are bound by the general obligation and possess the right as individuals, or joined in associations, to work so that the divine message of salvation is made known and accepted by all persons everywhere in the world. This obligation is even more compelling in those circumstances in which only through them can people hear the gospel and know Christ.
§2. According to each one’s own condition, they are also bound by a particular duty to imbue and perfect the order of temporal affairs with the spirit of the gospel and thus to give witness to Christ, especially in carrying out these same affairs and in exercising secular functions.
Can. 226 §1. According to their own vocation, those who live in the marital state are bound by a special duty to work through marriage and the family to build up the people of God.
§2. Since they have given life to their children, parents have a most grave obligation and possess the right to educate them. Therefore, it is for Christian parents particularly to take care of the Christian education of their children according to the doctrine handed on by the Church.
Can. 227 The lay Christian faithful have the right to have recognized that freedom which all citizens have in the affairs of the earthly city. When using that same freedom, however, they are to take care that their actions are imbued with the spirit of the gospel and are to heed the doctrine set forth by the magisterium of the Church. In matters of opinion, moreover, they are to avoid setting forth their own opinion as the doctrine of the Church.
Can. 228 §1. Lay persons who are found suitable are qualified to be admitted by the sacred pastors to those ecclesiastical offices and functions which they are able to exercise according to the precepts of the law.
§2. Lay persons who excel in necessary knowledge, prudence, and integrity are qualified to assist the pastors of the Church as experts and advisors, even in councils according to the norm of law.
Can. 229 §1. Lay persons are bound by the obligation and possess the right to acquire knowledge of Christian doctrine appropriate to the capacity and condition of each in order for them to be able to live according to this doctrine, announce it themselves, defend it if necessary, and take their part in exercising the apostolate.
§2. They also possess the right to acquire that fuller knowledge of the sacred sciences which are taught in ecclesiastical universities and faculties or in institutes of religious sciences, by attending classes there and pursuing academic degrees.
§3. If the prescripts regarding the requisite suitability have been observed, they are also qualified to receive from legitimate ecclesiastical authority a mandate to teach the sacred sciences.
Can. 230 §1.n Lay persons who possess the age and qualifications established by decree of the conference of bishops can be admitted on a stable basis through the prescribed liturgical rite to the ministries of lector and acolyte.
Nevertheless, the conferral of these ministries does not grant them the right to obtain support or remuneration from the Church.
§2. Lay persons can fulfill the function of lector in liturgical actions by temporary designation. All lay persons can also perform the functions of commentator or cantor, or other functions, according to the norm of law.
§3. When the need of the Church warrants it and ministers are lacking, lay persons, even if they are not lectors or acolytes, can also supply certain of their duties, namely, to exercise the ministry of the word, to preside over liturgical prayers, to confer baptism, and to distribute Holy Communion, according to the prescripts of the law.
Can. 231 §1. Lay persons who permanently or temporarily devote themselves to special service of the Church are obliged to acquire the appropriate formation required to fulfill their function properly and to carry out this function conscientiously, eagerly, and diligently.
§2. Without prejudice to the prescript of can. 230, §1 and with the prescripts of civil law having been observed, lay persons have the right to decent remuneration appropriate to their condition so that they are able to provide decently for their own needs and those of their family. They also have a right for their social provision, social security, and health benefits to be duly provided.
Basically have a family, and we might possibly let you read if you’re clever and bring up your children in the church.
It’s a cult.

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Pat, they said in Stormont recently that the bill for compensation for victims of institutional abuse in NI might amount to £400 million and that Amy and the orders have been asked to contribute.

They further said that people don’t seem to be aware of the NI compensation/redress scheme. It covers not only the victims but surviving relatives of victims who died since 1953.

Please, Pat, would you promote this, either via this comment or via a blog in its own right.

https://www.hiaredressni.uk/

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6.06

No; it all boiled down, in the beginning, to a Roman Catholic priest’s keeping his member from places it should not have been forcibly put, and his fellow clerics having sufficiently developed consciences to report him to the police.

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5:16pm

Thank you for taking the trouble to copy and paste a raft of Canon Law Paras relating to rights of lay people etc – hey combined with the Human Rights Act and the UN Charter we’re gatehering up a head of steam now aren’t we – and to think anyone would think lay people have no rights in this day and age!!

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Thinking about yesterday’s post about lying, the other thing I never believe is these bishops who claim they don’t know child abuse is illegal. Even in the wildly unlikely event they don’t know they should know it’s immoral.

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Heard a story about a deaf priest that I met him many years ago. He was ordained by PJPII in UK around 1980s. He went to work in communites sent by his Bishop. I was told that he had left priesthood and he got into a relationship with a woman now with a son. He was in turmoil between the church and woman with his son. Then he decided to leave the priesthood. He was speaking in a TV programme ‘deaf zone’ as it seems that he had some criticism of his ex Bishop for dragging far too long. He was in the priesthood for some 20 years or more.
Is that the norm ??

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Belief and prayer got abolished 1959-69 to the surprise & dismay of Heenan and everyone I knew. There was nothing left to fill the vacuum but sentimentality (sometimes disguised). There are differences from one region to another but that’s the basic story. Bishops ordaining may not have been able to convey to prospective seminarians what the basis was; and then Paul VI told them they have got to become media personalities. From what I hear, the lay roles have drastically decreased not increased.

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Bishop Pat what about a blog on the MIA in all of the Irish Dioceses or even just the Northern ones to try and find out the truth as to where they are?

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It may well be that the SSPX is all we have left. Though I have lived with it all my life, I no longer see any point in attending a Novus Ordo Mass – the parish community behind it is fractured and the priest at best inept and at worst a betrayer. If you are lucky enough to have an SSPX chapel near you, try it out. You’ll find a friendly welcome and good priests such as the inestimable Father Sebastian Wall. And don’t be put off by “dress code”: I used to turn up at Salterton Road, London wearing jeans, and nobody ever said anything. In those days St Joseph’s was famous for a good spread after Mass, and the wonderful Susan Horton RIP running the piety stall.

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One of the most beautiful homilies ever today at our beloved Archbishop’s Requiem
Mass
Homily for the Requiem of Archbishop Philip Tartaglia
St Andrew’s Cathedral, 21 January 2021
“Anyone who eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I shall raise him up on the last day.”
There are so many settings in which to have known Archbishop Philip: as a member of his family, or in his school and student days, in Rome, in the seminaries and parishes he served, as Bishop of Paisley and Archbishop of Glasgow. There were the many circles he moved in: of ecumenical dialogue, Catholic education about which he was so engaged and realistic, the civic life of Glasgow, not forgetting its sport. So many people touched by him, so many aspects to a life, so many perspectives to view it from. Three score years and ten. Our memories are fragments of a greater whole, and that whole – the mystery of a person – is in the mind and hands of God. “On the earth the broken arcs, in the heaven a perfect round.”
Today, in Christ, we remember Philip’s life, we give thanks for it and we pray for its completion and the comfort of the bereaved. We bring him and ourselves before God in a literal and metaphorical great Eucharistic prayer of hope and affection.
The image that comes to me is of a great tree felled unexpectedly in the middle of the night – Storm Covid. And only when we woke up the day following did we begin to divine what had happened, did we begin to grasp the depths of its roots, to see the space this tree occupied, the shelter it gave, and what we’ve personally and collectively lost. This uprooting has changed the landscapes of so many lives. “Tree” seems right. The timber of this man was sound. It was sound all through. At a time when hollowness or rottenness seem to surface with disheartening regularity, this was a comfort. I think we felt this soundness and relied on it more than we knew.
Eulogy is no part of a liturgy. It’s the last thing Philip would have wanted; he was not a self-advertising man. It’s not what we want; we are probably still too numb. But the prohibition of eulogy doesn’t mean we have to talk abstractions. Surely we can acclaim the providence of God, the presence of Christ and the action of the Holy Spirit within him, from his birth seventy years ago to his committal today, from his baptism to this Eucharist, from the pouring of that first water to the final sprinkling of his remains. There seems a rare wholeness here. Surely we can acknowledge how the grace of his baptism and of his ordination grew and flowered in him, how the Lord was indeed his shepherd and through him shepherded others, how his priesthood became a true spiritual fatherhood which has left its trace on all of us.
Looking at it from our side, we are commending to God today someone who wasn’t small in any sense, someone of gravitas, and someone in whom head and heart came together, possessed of intellectual force and clarity and at the same time of great human warmth. There have been so many testimonies to this (and my thanks to all who have sent condolences). He might have passed his life in the green pastures of dogmatic theology, by the restful waters of seminary teaching (if they exist) or of promising ecumenical dialogue, but he accepted pastoral assignments and he cherished them. He had a gift for friendship and insight into people. During our Ad Limina visit with the Pope in 2018 he said to the Holy Father, “I miss the parish”, and got a delighted papal thumbs-up. As a pastor, especially here in Glasgow and for a while in Edinburgh too, he had plenty of valleys of darkness to walk through, with others, with unsettled priests, survivors of abuse, victims of accidents, and he did so in such a genuine, heartfelt way. The bin lorry episode, the helicopter on the roof, his concern for asylum seekers. A lady from my own diocese whose father died in the James Watt Street fire of 1968 sent me this: “I have happy memories of the Archbishop when he so kindly agreed to celebrate Mass for my dad and the many others that died in James Watt Street. It was said exactly fifty years later, it was beautiful and he spoke with gentleness and love. I felt truly humbled when he talked about my life during the homily. Somehow his love and understanding took away so much of my pain. I will always be grateful.” “He wept with those who wept”. Like the Psalmist, at times he also had his own “drooping spirit” to walk with. He was actually a shy and sensitive man. He felt pressures and there were certainly more than he voiced. He took things to heart, literally, and we know with what consequences. We need to be more careful of each other’s hearts. For myself, I only came to know Bishop / Archbishop Philip after becoming bishop myself in 2011. But I had already encountered him during the papal visit the year before, at the Mass at Bellahouston. Bishops and Abbots were waiting in a tent. He went out to look at the singing crowds, full of young people, and he came back with his face flushed, crying, “The faith is alive! The faith is alive!” This wasn’t a tired, box-ticking cleric; he seemed an almost childlike enthusiast. So the memories remain: voicing our apology for child abuse in this Cathedral, preaching to seminarians in the crypt of St Peter’s, urging them in his halting, straight from the heart way, to put Christ at the centre of their lives, everywhere and always, and find their integrity in him; responding explosively to a paper put before him at a bishop’s meeting, “Where’s Christ in this?”, or after a glass or two of wine at a late Spanish dinner in Salamanca launching into the intricacies of 16th c. Eucharistic theology.
How good, how consoling, that he should go to God on the solemnity of St Kentigern.
I have to say I feel his eye on me as I speak. It’s a little unnerving. “Get it right, Hugh, get it right”. This tree had a root: the deep Catholic Christian faith he had received from his family. And through that faith flowed the sacramental sap that nourished and greened his life. It wasn’t hard to choose the readings: the Eucharistic climax of the discourse from John ch. 6, Isaiah’s vision of the banquet on the mountain-top, the Psalm that ends with the feast in the Temple, when the Lord as an accompanying shepherd becomes at the end a welcoming host, precisely the future we wish for Philip. Here was the heart of the man. Here, along with his family, were the loves that moved him: the Gospel of John, the person of Christ, God and man, born of the Virgin (he loved our Lady), risen from the dead and the same Lord’s real, substantial and permanent presence under the appearances of bread and wine, the food of our soul and the pledge of our resurrection.. These are the things that held him together, made him a whole, and gave him the holding power he had. It’s for believing and confessing and preaching these things he would want to be remembered: floreat praeconio verbi. It’s on this basis he would want his beloved archdiocese and the Church in Scotland to move forward. He could say, in dark moments, “do we still believe in the Eucharist?” He could also say, “I find people are fascinated if you speak to them of Christ.”
“On this mountain he will remove the mourning veil covering all peoples, and the shroud enwrapping all nations; he will destroy death for ever. The Lord will wipe away the tears from every cheek.” So the prophet. “Anyone who eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I shall raise him up on the last day.” So the Gospel. “In the Lord’s own house shall I dwell for ever and ever.” So the Psalmist. With these words, with this hope, let us comfort one another and go on.
The great tree goes into the earth as a seed, to rest through the winter of time in “the dear green place”, to rest and to be raised incorruptible. Man’s winter, God’s spring.
May he rest in peace and rise in glory. Amen.
Bishop Hugh Gilbert OSB

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Let’s stop Keenan from getting Clyde Street. He has failed in paisley. He lets clerics and students off with some of the worst conduct ever. We need Mr Cushley

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Remember – communication occurs at the receiving end, not the delivery end. Long trysts like this have no hope of being received. Consider in advance what you think you can realistically achieve by your post.

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Eamon Martin is facing serious safety problems for his seminarian and clergy as the inpatient clincs for psychological treatment are closed in the UK due to the pandemic. Eamon is considering clinics in Canada, USA and Australia. At least 5 Priests and one Seminarian will be sent to one of the above countries to a treatment facility to correct their addictions and behavior patterns. The addictions mainly focus on online grooming and sex addictions of all types. Its very sad, Armagh clergy and a Seminarian have reached to these levels.

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Pat it is very interesting how Eamon Martin can divert funding to rehabilitate his Priests and one Seminarian and refrain from supporting the Maynooth redress scheme for survivors.

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