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ALPHONSUS BORGIA CULLINANE.

EMAIL TO PHONSIE AND ALL OCSO ABBOTS AND ABBESSES.

Dear Bishop Alphonsus,

I direct your attention to the announcement made yesterday morning that Fr. Richard Purcell has resigned as the Abbot of Mount Melleray Abbey. I took no pleasure in reading the news. https://ocso.org/2021/11/25/mount-melleray-abbey/

However, it is long overdue, because Fr. Purcell’s scandalous lifestyle has been known about for a considerable period of time. In fact, he was NOTORIOUS within the Diocese of Killaloe. And, he was notorious in your own diocese; however, you overlooked this reality with wilful and deliberate intent. Hence, you were part of the problem and not part of the solution.

The announcement on the website of the Order Cistercians of the Strict Observance is an exercise in obfuscation. It is also a demonstrable example of an egregious and unacceptable cover-up. I submit that the Apostolic Visitation of Mount Melleray Abbey was a sham. I would further submit that this so-called “visitation” was a half-hearted and ignominious attempt to salvage the utterly compromised and utterly discredited Abbot General, Dom Eamon Fitzgerald. Why do I make this assertion?

Because, it can be irrefutably established that Dom Eamon Fitzgerald, OCSO, knew that Fr. Richard Purcell was sexually active as a monk of Mount St. Joseph Abbey. And, he did so for a considerable period of time.

On September 13, 2020, at 6.39 p.m., Dom Eamon Fitzgerald called me [Pat Buckley], and we had a free-flowing conversation lasting eighteen (18) minutes and (39) seconds about Fr. Richard Purcell. Dom Eamon admitted to me [Pat Buckley] that Purcell had been sexually active at Mount St. Joseph Abbey, and he [Fitzgerald] further acknowledgement that they [the Cistercians] had hoped it was a one-off.

As I have made clear in the past due to the advances in mobile (“cell phone” for my American readers) phone technology it would be and deeply imprudent of Dom Eamon Fitzgerald to deny the conversation and what he admitted about Fr. Purcell on the evening of September 13, 2020.

Bishop Alphonsus: did the two (2) visitators of Mount Melleray Abbey: a) the Abbot of Tilburg, Dom Peeters and, b) Mother Fourmentin, Abbess of Arnhem, know about this conversation. And, did they interview Dom Fitzgerald about same?

Did Dom Peeters and Mother Fourmentin visit the Dublin-based “Boilerhouse” with a photograph of Fr. Purcell?

Did Dom Peeters and Mother Fourmentin ask the proprietors of this house of ill-repute if they recognised Fr. Purcell from his frequent visits in the past?

And, if they did visit the Boilerhouse: did they ask any of the patrons present if they recognised Fr. Richard Purcell and/or know about Fr. Purcell’s known proclivity for barebacking? Because you are probably innocent “barebacking” is the term of reference for unprotected sex, i.e., sex without a condom.

Did the Dom Peeters and Mother Fourmentin review the accounts of Mount Melleray Abbey? Did they review the credit card statements?

Did Dom Peeters and Mother Fourmentin ask Richard Purcell about how he paid for his visits to the Boilerhouse? Presumably, he must have paid with cash in order to avoid creating an electronic trail that could be picked up by forensic accountants and/or officials from the Charities Regulator, or indeed any abbot or abbess that might have investigated Mount Melleray Abbey.

It is, of course, noteworthy that the allegations that I have repeatedly made against Fr. Purcell were not explicitly DENIED. And, it is also the case that Dom Peeters and Mother Fourmentin were never going to find any corroborating evidence; because, the visitation was instituted to beget/facilitate an agreed outcome.

In light of the allegations that I have repeatedly made against the now Fr. Purcell, I find it surprising that I was not contacted. I could have provided Dom Peeters and Mother Fourmentin with the identity of the ex-seminarian from the Diocese of Killaloe who alleges that he had consensual anal sex with Richard Purcell at the Boilerhouse. The said ex-seminarian recognised the now Fr. Purcell from a retreat conducted by the latter when the former was a seminarian in Maynooth. 

Bishop Alphonsus, you have known about these allegations for some time. In fact, you were among the first to know. In fact, like a white sepulchre you have overlooked a significant sexual scandal within a monastery within your own diocese. Moreover, you afforded to the now Fr. Purcell every opportunity to minimise and dilute the severity of the scandal by permitting Purcell to celebrate the Eucharist beside you at functions within the Diocese of Waterford and Lismore. Therefore, instead of being part of the solution you were part of the problem. You let your animus towards me cloud your judgement to the detriment of the greater good of Mount Melleray Abbey and the diocese that was entrusted to your pastoral governance by Pope Francis. And, that raises serious questions about your integrity.

Your demonstrable hypocrisy, both personal and ecclesiastical adds significant credence to the calls of the Labour Party for the removal of church patronage in Irish schools. Sadly, you lack the insight to discern how abominable your handling of the scandal has been for the past eighteen months or so, and it has been nothing short of scandalous. If you had any decency you would resign immediately as the Ordinary of Waterford and Lismore.

When you celebrated the funeral liturgy of the late Monsignor Michael Olden and when you ordained Fr. John Dineen, both at Mount Melleray Abbey, you were aware of the severity of the allegations that had been made against then Dom Richard Purcell. You [Bishop Cullinan] were as I wrote previously “complicit in the corporate silence of the Cistercians and their concomitant failure to deal with Purcell”. Hypocrisy, thy name is: Bishop Alphonsus Cullinan.

Thus, the question remains: will you now preventively suspend the priestly faculties of Fr. Richard Purcell within the Diocese of Waterford and Lismore? The actions of Fr. Purcell bring the Cistercian monastic life into disrepute. It is the case that Fr. Purcell is no longer an Ordinary — so will Fr. Purcell be subject to a canonical investigation conducted in accordance with Canon 1717?

This e-mail will be published on my blog. It is been copied to the Irish Apostolic Nuncio and to the Cardinal Prefect of the so-called Congregation for Religious, so that they have “knowledge” of this scandal.

I am copying this to Bishop Erik Varden, because, he, too is also complicit in this cover-up. Because, he inexcusably failed to reply to a letter that was sent to him about the Purcell scandal, so, he, too, is another Cistercian hypocrite.

I am also bringing this matter to the attention of Sr. Eleanor Campion; she is a member of the Law Commission of the Order. Perhaps, she and the other members of the “Commission” may wish to look at the procedures to deal with complaints against abbots and abbesses; because, clearly the current system has not worked, as Dom Eamon “Ostrich” Fitzgerald, has reverted to type when he was the Abbot of Mount Melleray, utterly incapable of making a decision.

It is been further copied to the English-speaking and French-speaking Cistercians, so they can see the real nature of: a) the despicable abbatial tenure of Richard Purcell; and, b) the lamentable handling of a “known” scandal by the Abbot General, Eamon Fitzgerald, OCSO.

Thereby, when they come to elect a successor to Fitzgerald as Abbot General, they will elect an individual who will not (we hope) in the future show the same moral ambiguity and lack of leadership as Dom Eamon. And, who bring about renewal within the Congregation and not be a mindless steward who oversees decline.

Finally, I take great heart that the resignation of Purcell followed the death of Fr. Jean-Pierre Schumacher, the last surviving monk and sole survivor of the assassination of the monks of Tibhirine. It gives me hope for the renewal of the Cistercians. Let us seek the intercession of the Altas Martyrs for the renewal of Mount Melleray Abbey and the Order of the Cistercians of the Strict Observance.

+ Pat Buckley

100 replies on “ALPHONSUS BORGIA CULLINANE.”

4.17: Pat, you sure know how to seek revenge. This vengeful act of yours against Bishop Cullinane was a long time waiting. Some Christian you are!! A pathetic vindictive, nasty person.

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Did the Archbishop of Sydney send as much as an acknowledgement? They feel unaccountable to anyone.

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9.22
Pathetic comment from Bela lLugosi Dracula! Owl gossip a Lert. Say comething cogent and coherent instead of this baby talk.

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It is just incredulous that two experienced monastic superiors can conduct a visitation without contacting Purcell’s sole accuser. It is even more extraordinary that they did not get in contact with Neil Dargan. I suppose they were unaware of the existence of the ex-seminarian you make reference to in the blog.

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That’s why they would have called a visitation, which is to the community being visitated, and who weren’t publicly calling him out on his behaviour. The opposite of course is an investigation of the actual complaints.
They have made an effort to do something but something guaranteed to have no relevance to the abbot’s promiscuity.
It is another example of the classic deceit the church excels in. Another example would be the first review commissioned by Ealing Abbey which had terms of reference carefully designed by the abbey to avoid anything that might involve raping children.
The ONLY thing which will make the church behave is state control which will obviously only apply to legal aspects.

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7:18 This has nothing to do with revenge.
It’s about rampant monk and Abbot.
And it’s about another Catholic bishop turning a blind eye to the intolerable and befriending and protecting the wrong doer.

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7.33: Pat, you have never hidden your hatred and disdain for Bishop Cullinane. You waited in the long grass.Your day came and now you are piling barrels of salt into wounds. Yes indeed, you are a master avenger. You got your head on a plate. Have you prayed for anyone except yourself in this situation? Have you ever asked what Christ would expect of you? I doubt if he would approve of your continuing assassinations and hypocrisy.

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8:10 I do not hate the Phonz or anyone.

I am disgusted by his support for Purcell.

This was a situation that would have attracted the Christ in the Temple.

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Pat, another powerful missive. But I think it loses some of its traction due to your invective towards Bishop Alphonsus. However, you asking all the right questions about the sham visitation.

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Father Peeters, who solves murders, abductions, gay sex rings and other mysteries in the RCC, assisted by a streetwise nun, Sister Pascale. Has all the makings of a good TV Drama.

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The idea of an Apostolic Visitation is good in principle. However, as we have seen it is dependent upon the key players acting with integrity. In the case of Mount Melleray Abbey this appears to have been conspicuously absent. Increasingly, it is looking like that self-regulation is no regulation.

It is, of course, appropriate highlight that Bishop Cullinane has no jurisdiction over Mount Melleray Abbey because the Cistercians are a Congregation of Pontifical Right. Nonetheless, Bishop Cullinane did have a moral duty to ensure that the allegations were properly and appropriately investigated. To that extent, Bishop Cullinane should have suspended the faculties of Richard Purcell in the Diocese of Waterford & Lismore upon learning of the allegations last year. He should also have made the public aware of his decision.

He should have demanded prompt action from Dom Eamon Fitzgerald, and if this was not forthcoming, he should have written to Cardinal João Bráz de Aviz, Prefect of the Congregation for Institutes of Consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Life to demand an investigation into the allegations. Because, Bishop Cullinane is an Ordinary he would have the requisite standing to prompt the Congregation into action. They could independently of Dom Fitzgerald have by Decree appointed two independent visitators. It is clear that Bishop Cullinane has failed in his moral duty to act for the greater good of the local Church in Waterford and Lismore.

Instead, Bishop Cullinane, tried to undermine the allegations by extending credibility to Purcell at every opportunity, by celebrating the liturgy with him at Mount Melleray Abbey, and at the recent priestly ordination in the cathedral in Waterford City. Bishop Cullinane is morally complicit in this scandal.

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‘extending credibility to Purcell at every opportunity, by celebrating the liturgy with him’
Which illustrates exactly how the bishop views the liturgy. He apparently understands its sacredness enough to withhold communion to Pat Buckley though.

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5:46,
It is, of course, appropriate to highlight that Bishop Cullinane has no jurisdiction over Mount Melleray Abbey because the Cistercians are a Congregation of Pontifical Right.
At the beginning of October it was written: “The scandal will overshadow next years international chapter of the Cistercians when .. ceases being abbot general – which will be attended by representatives if the 160 monasteries in the order.
WE intend to take steps to put the .. scandal on the chapter agenda.”
The Abbot General asked for the Regular Visitation. It was a Cistercians matter that has been dealth with by the Cistercians.
Pax.

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But Phonsie tolerated it and continued to appear in public with Purcell. He even held his diocesan Family Day with Purcell in Melleray.

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‘He even held his diocesan Family Day with Purcell in Melleray.’
Holding a family day in a place where theoretically there is no sex is bizarre enough in itself. Even more so with the abbot allegedly humping a prospective candidate in the kitchen.

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Richard Pursell has received a very great deal of criticism and has had to resign from his post. He will regret what has happened and probably regards himself as very foolish. People hold onto officialdom for all sorts of wrong reasons and he has not helped himself in difficult circumstances. Is it not time to leave him alone, completely? Allow him to reflect and pray, which is the Christian approach to the situation described so many times in this blog.

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Phonsie should resign at once. He cannot be trusted and a Man who covers up for people like Purcell is not suitable for Episcopal Office. Get out now Phonsie before you are fired by Rome. The people of the Diocese of Waterford and Lismore should seek his Removal.

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Gosh, bishops are falling like flies and having to resign because of scandals – including their own. A Spanish Bishop went a couple of months ago for hooking up with a pagan woman.

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Do you not think the Cistercian’s handled it well in the end? For instance, it is now on record that 1. The accusations are unfounded. 2. He has resigned. 3. They accepted his resignation.
He is gone from office. They are seen to have dealt with it. They made a public statement on the matter.
It is very wise from their point of view (“nothing to see here”) however, on a human level he doesn’t really come out the winner but they have succeeded in protecting the monastery.

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6:19 Have a go at reading yesterday’s statement and trying to understand that the resignation is unrelated to the visitation and then you will see how stooopid your comment is.

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The irony of it all: it started with a Visitation to Silverstream and ended with a Visitation to Mount Melleray.

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Deenihan and Coffey will be feeling like complete asses right now. Their arrogant, dishonest, shambolic bungling of the Silverstream affair has metastasized into something which only the Holy See can address. All for what? To excuse the Diocese of Meath for failing to properly vet the notoriously unstable Kirby, giving him a blank check to found an abusive, traddie cult of personality based on fake “locutions” and barely repressed homoeroticism?

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“To excuse the Diocese of Meath…”
The Visitation of the Priory has put the ball firmly back in the court of the diocese. The Episcopal leader cannot wash his hands of the Priory. It is a diocesan matter which must be resolved by the diocese.
Pax.

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“Hypocrisy, thy name is: Bishop Alphonsus Cullinan.”

That is a brilliant sentence. Sadly, it is also true. Why are the Irish Bishops just so bad?

Do you think Bishop Cullinan might have acted soon if anyone else had alerted him to the allegations other than you +Pat?

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Dick: But I can’t resign for health reasons like you did, to get Buckley and Hourigan off my back, that would look too suspicious.
Kitty: No, but you could say it was for personal reasons, that could mean anything. And make sure you do it after the visitation finds you’ve done nothing wrong.
Dick: LOL you mean like my visitation of your monastery?
Kitty. Yes that’s right…. Oops, sorry that just slipped out.

It’s actually like a carry on film.

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The hilarious thing is that they don’t seem to think that anyone notices that it’s all from the same dishonest ecclesiastical playbook.

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Fr Bede and Fr Anselm were invited to a meeting with the Bishop on Friday. He did not change his mind, and so we will depart at the end of the year.
He told us of his plans for the parishes. The current unit of four parishes is to be split once again.
Wells & Cheddar:
Cheddar and Wells will have their own parish priest, who will be resident in the presbytery in Wells. Your new parish priest will be Fr Tony Pazhayakalam CST. He hails from Kerala in India, and is a member of the Little Flower Congregation. (You can find out more about his Order at http://www.cstfathersindia.com) We know you will make him very welcome. At the moment he is based in Cheltenham, and he intends to arrive at the end of the year.
Shepton Mallet & Glastonbury:
Shepton Mallet & Glastonbury will not have a resident priest at this time, but the Bishop intends that they will in the future. In the meantime the Bishop will be organising supply priests, to ensure that there will be Mass every Sunday for both parishes.

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No doubt they’ll go and ponce off a traditionalist sect who’ll give them board and lodgings.

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The new PP of Cheddar and Wells seems dynamic. I am sure his accent will improve but better him than the two sour dames caterwauling Latin chant.

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They could ask Fr Richard Purcell to take on one of the vacant parishes. He has time on his hands, is persona non grata in Ireland and he definitely, definitely does not celebrate the TLM.

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Fortunately, in a nice diocese, level headed people can bring out of Scripture what was always in it.

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8:03 pm

Only an individual of extraordinary credulity, or else a high capacity for self-deception, could believe that the resignation of ex-Abbot Purcell, announced in the same statement, could be unrelated to the visitation of Mount Melleray.

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Have the Irish clergy not yet realised that when they put + Buckley out of their tent they left him with little option but to piss into the tent?

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12.17 pm

I’m sure the four parishes will be fine. After all they had the rug pulled from under their feet when the two priest/monks told the parishioners they were leaving at the end of the year. They wouldn’t have been expecting that to happen.
Now it would appear from the newsletter above that if the Bishop has not changed his mind, that would suggest that they have changed their minds about leaving.
It’s turning in to a bit of a saga.

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1 – Did the person in the kitchen get invited to give evidence?
2 – How involved is Michael Barber SJ, onetime of Oxford?
3 – Will the RC in England, USA and Australia pitch in on RP’s resettlement fee, given the extensive interknowledge? Is this where the 100 million from Sloane Gardens (nominally in the pocket of its former owner) is going towards?
4 – It must have been so far out of the usual league for minnows of such high calibre to be so paralyzed. By galvanising them at last, does G. Pell hope the very big fish (in all walks) will slip away?
5 – We now all see what was festering in plain sight for more than half a lifetime across much of southern England, not to mention what haunts the Midlands and north.
6 – The RC should have abandoned “mass” or “eucharist” long ago, as it is only to support that that all the wrongs “have to” get allowed.
7 – I think priests’ celibacy got brought in to provide “cover” for those who had met with the same occurrence as Abelard. Subsequent generations of clergy and laics subliminally caught onto showing an unhealthy curiosity on “official” grounds in the private life of boys, women et al.
8 – The RC should be confirming infants like its predecessor
9 – Doesn’t Roscrea School have trustees and shouldn’t they have been holding public protests for years by now? Just bringing a new man in won’t solve any problems for the parents and pupils: if trustees’ hands could be tied over all this they can be tied over any enormity in the future.
10 – Are the Irish BC going to appoint another inappropriate and compromised person to “towards healing”?

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He’s probably another one of these fellows who couldn’t hack the silence by keeping his trap shut.

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If Robert Hourigan was writing these blogs then he is just brilliant. His command of language is unlike anything is unlike anything we have seen in the Irish church for a long time. In collaboration with Buckley he has claimed the scalp of an abbot. And that is quite an accomplishment because the church never gives up a prelate.

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Robert Hourigan and his family are very long term lovers and supporters of Mount Mellerary. “Hourigan” monks are buried in the monastery cemetery. These people and others like them were never going to allow anyone to destroy the long history of holiness at this special site.

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Pat, you should read the condolence section of the R.I.P.site re: Fr. Patrick O’ Brien…now here’s a true man of God and an absolute inspiration..I’m sure you’ll agree!!

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Anon at 12.02pm
Fr Patrick o brien?? Are you referring to another priest in my Melleray or is it the same priest that I said?
He was fr A o brien. He was a holy priest in mt Melleray.
I met him some two decades or more ago. It was a group of 12 deaf people on a day out to Mt Melleray plus short trip to grotto as well. So we went there and met him for the 1st time. After that, one deaf guy a decade or more older than me said to all of us that he got upset over Fr o brien remark. We asked him what was it. He said that priest said to him that he haven’t been to mass for 20 years or more. He admitted it later that it was true which left us more amazed. First thing popped into my mind was how did that priest know?
What I didn’t know that pruest had some gifts given by God. Then a decade later I decided to visit Mt Melleray again after finding out that deceased relative of mine got married there as it was confirmed by a OSCO register in mt Melleray.
There I met fr o brien and had confession with him outside of confession box. He knew I’m deaf and could communicate etc. Bit by bit re him as I got glimpses of him which left me saying he’s something else, certainly God gift. He was an exorcist which I didn’t know in the 1st place. Cos something happened in my family home where I saw a black shadow which shooked me to the core. Had a discussion with him re my questions and answers coming from him. Then I understood that I must pray for my brother without knowing why. To be honest with you, I didn’t understand the whole thing, in fairness, it was way over my head re spiritual aspect. It was only him who understood it.
Then one week later, my brother pass away. I was shocked at his passing. He dropped dead beside a rcc church which was a strange coindence to me, cos he didn’t believe in rcc cos of Spanish inquisition etc etc.
Then I forgot all about this until many months later when I started to think about fr o brien and my questions on ‘black shadow’ . I think he knew that my brother was going to die but said to me, just pray for him as I was puzzled by this. A week later, my brother was dead. That was one of his other gifts that I know and heard it, also first hand story from a woman as well.
Thats the reason why I supported Robert Hourigan efforts plus Pat buckley along with some other witness as well. Cos I didn’t want RP and cullinane in any way, shape it form, to bersmirch and tar or blacken all of Mt Melleray name and reputation as well.
Its bec of my encounters with late Fr o brien plus late relatives who got married there, way way back then.
I never forgotten my last meeting with late fr o brien along with Fr bonaventure as I knew that he was going to die as he was in his very late 80s, his body was shrinking and getting smaller. He knew it.
A saintly priest in my mind.

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@ 5:03 pm

Father Athanasius O’Brien OCSO., born in 1919 in Selsar Wexford, Ireland, entered Mount Melleray Abbey in 1942 and made his solemn profession in 1945. He was ordained priest in 1950. He died on May 27, 2010, at 91 years of age, had been in monastic vows for 65 years, 60 of which as a priest when the Lord called him. Mystic, exorcist, and uncanonised saint, member of the Charismatic Renewal Movement, he was great friends with Fr. Peter Rookey, the man of miracles, another uncanonised saint, famous for The Miracle Prayer :
Lord Jesus, I come before Thee, just as I am, I am sorry for my sins, I repent of my sins, please forgive me. In Thy Name, I forgive all others for what they have done against me. I renounce Satan, the evil spirits and all their works. I give Thee my entire self, Lord Jesus, I accept Thee as my Lord God and Savior. Heal me, change me, strengthen me in body, soul, and spirit.
Come Lord Jesus, cover me with Thy Precious Blood, and fill me with Thy Holy Spirit, I love Thee Lord Jesus, I praise Thee Lord Jesus, I thank Thee Jesus, I shall follow Thee every day of my life. Amen.
Mary, My Mother, Queen of Peace, all the Angels and Saints, please help me. Amen.
St. Peregrine (cancer saint) pray for me.

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Excuse me but is the photography of Bishop Borgia real or was it doctored. He looks like he is in his PJs wearing a nightcap stirring his hot milk and honey. What is missing is a big D on the cap. Is it not wise to nip problems in the bud not to let them get bigger? Are the churchmen following the laws of the church or making them up as they go? I won’t be buying the new release for Christmas. It might be Bishop Borgias swan song. Thanks in advance for answering.

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Very good questions, Agnes. See it’s like this – in every other walk of life you mature during your twenties and realize you have to act like a grown up. Those who don’t end up in trouble or even the church.
Clerical life attracts men who want to be special and dream about being a Cardinal or Doge or whatever. When they realize the rest of the world doesn’t buy their fantasy they throw a fit and make it up. They can’t admit they’ve messed up so have to brazen their way out by shredding the paperwork or making out they didn’t know abuse was illegal.
The whole thing is unreal and a malign influence.

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Hello there Anonymous 12:37. Thanks for answering but what is a Doge? That is a new
one on me. I don’t like the sound of it. I think it is better to ordain a few elder lemons than ordaining pip squeaks who don’t know their arse from their elbow or if they are coming or going. Life is difficult for us all but most of us cannot afford shredders. Maybe they are in a world of their own because their mammy’s and daddy’s were too busy to mind them when they were babies. Thanks again.

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I think the Bishops in Ireland will sit up and take notice of the recent developments in the Purcell casesays:

I think the Bishops in Ireland will sit up and take notice of the recent developments in the Purcell case. They will not have failed to notice that the press by and large were uninterested in this matter. They will not have failed to notice that their own habitual inclination to deny, prevaricate, delay, coverup, obfuscate etc. has not worked. Neither will they have failed to notice the influence that + Pat is able to exercise through his publication in this blog of the behaviour, lifestyle, duplicity, sinfulness and hypocrisy of so many seminarians, priests and bishops. I have no doubt that it is because of the revelation of what Purcell has been up to by this blog that has eventually led to his downfall. It would appear that this blog is about the only thing that tries to call these people to account – bishops themselves, the nuncio, the press, all seem to take no interest. But, they now have to look over their shoulders at the accountability demanded by + Pat. He is in an envious position – which has come through some considerable personal cost and pain over the decades – where he has nothing and nobody to fear. Everything about him and his life has been laid bare for all to see. They cannot threaten him with anything. And, so he can be a fearless observer and critic when needed of a Church and its clerics who for too long have been able to get away with things and to fool us all. The fact that what + Pat publishes is never contested in any serious way suggests to me that what he is saying is true. I hope that + Pat will continue to call these people to account for many years to come. Finally, I think + Pat would be the first to say that if sinners accept their sinful ways and turn back through conversion, then there is hope. And he would rejoice in that and support such conversion through this blog and what he reports. The trouble is that these people don’t live that in their lives and hope to continue in dishonesty, duplicity, hypocrisy and their sinfulness and hope to carry on fooling us for ever. Well, I think the game has changed, thanks to + Pat. They need to sit up and take notice.

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Can I respond?

I think the Irish bishops will continue to shy away from facing truths, protect their own and cover up all they can. This is what they want to do and this is what they are programmed to do. Each scandal that arises will only be solved by someone keeping at it like a dentist trying to excise a big tooth with strong roots.

Purcell will now be looked after royally and given everything he wants so that he will not reveal all he knows about bishops and priests.

No doubt I am hated more than ever in these ecclesiastical circles. So be it.

I simply want the truth to come out and for clerics who hurt others and live intolerable lives to be dealt with.

I cannot reveal details, but I have given a lot of personal and pastoral support to people who were subjects of criticism on this blog and continue to do so.

My heart goes out to people like myself who struggle with human weakness and failure.

However it is also the right thing to challenge clerical tyranny, wrong doing, hypocrisy and cynicism in all its forms.

And sometimes, ” the hand that hurts is also the hand that heals”.

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@ 9:50 am

Hold on a second; you assume the Bishops will sit up and take notice of the Purcell affair.
Before the Bishops sit up they must WAKE UP! Some seem to be in noddy land, others in cloud cuckoo land while others appear to be in the ‘the land of Egypt’ . WAKE THEM!

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This is how the system works.
Drawn out internal review before an investigation. If the internal review finds the accusation may be proven then agree a no-fault resignation. Why?
1. Save cost of investigation.
2. Prevent accusation moving to statement of fact (avoiding belief becoming fact was once thought to minimise scandal – prior to social media – the bishops are too removed to see today’s world as it is)
3. This protects the senior leaders from accusation of malfeasance or nonfeasance.
4. Minimise cost of compensation – through no-falt:no admission.
5. Avoid legal costs of the accused appealing decisions in a legal forum.
6. Most importantly – avoid the possibility of the accused getting off on a legal technically.
Points 5 and 6 are well exhibited by the Graham O’Dwyer appeal of a murder conviction. The Church can work off a different standard of evidence by managing a resignation internally.
The difference between what has happened and what you seek is the attachment of the guilty label. Ultimately the man has been removed from office, lives under accusation without opportunity to defend himself, and has been sufficiently humiliated in public. The Bishop will look like he cooperated with an inquiry (possibly drawn out by covid) but a resignation allowed him do little else thereafter.
The monastic Community – can they vote him out? I don’t think so. But they probably need to keep him away from the scouts if there is any query of sexual misconduct – not because he is a risk to children, but risk to the confidence of parents whose children attend there with scouting Ireland.
Our promises ask that we are above suspicion. This is the time for Dom Purcell to try again. Peter denied Christ and Jesus gave him another chance. This Christmas, and always, be Christ-like.
Remember the maximum punishment we can seek is an eye-for-an-eye. When the church was displeased with you, whether justified or not, you got a home for life and whatever deal in relation to salary and maintenance (if any). Should Purcell be given a Priory for life to conduct independent ministry from, and if so would you welcome him to work in communion with you?
Basically my challenge today is; follow through on your blog and tell us where you believe the Abbot and Bishop should minister?

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1 – Sauna customers, who are probably depressed are not MORALLY “consenting” even if that is not a police matter per se.
2 – Do you think Mr Hourigan was not right to be outraged at the way the long beloved spiritual centre was being handled? Or do you think like me that since belief and prayer were abolished by Montini-Rahner-Teilhard, we ought to know when to walk away from a spent ruin? It’s not like you to have a blinkered outlook.
3 – This is not about us repaying RP but a complicated system of tits for tats among bishops who oversee monasteries, bishops who oversee seminaries, and their associates, connexions and backers.
4 – I don’t think RP was a prime mover. Some wanted to demote him sooner and others ensured he was on the visitation team in order to spite them. He was surfing the crests and should negotiate his terms.

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‘Sauna customers, who are probably depressed are not MORALLY “consenting” even if that is not a police matter per se.’
One of the things about this blog is the reminders you get that some people just don’t live in reality.

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THG 11:18,
No, they cannot vote someone out. Usually one will be admonished privately by his seniors. There are processes for excommunication when someone does not amend their ways.
After his resignation, it is time for him to privately to try and mend his ways.
Pax.

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Even the most accomplished fiction writer could not have conceived what has occurred at Mount Melleray Abbey and the events that led to the visitation of the abbey and resignation of the main protagonist. Powerful stuff!

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As Bishop Cullinane was repeatedly made aware of the allegations about Purcell. I think this public execration of him is completely justified. Looking at the blog, you did not publish the letter to Bishop Varden. It is pretty harsh to refer to him an “another Cistercian hypocrite”. But I presume you or others made him aware of the allegations?

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“As Bishop .. was repeatedly made aware of the allegations about … I think this public execration of him is completely justified.”
It is not justified. The bishop would have expected the Abbot General to deal with such matters just as the the bishop would deal with matters within his diocese.
What threshold was reached that the Abbot General asked for a Regular Visitation? The Abbot General must explain to the bishop of the diocese. Now as per the latest developments today, the Abbot General has resigned.

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4:28 pm
And what about scandal to the faithful of the diocese, Seamus?
Why did this take so long ? Do you think the faithful are thick?

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4:57,
It’s a scandal of the Cistercian community. I think the faithful have the intelligence to understand that this is a Cistercians matter that must be resolved and dealth with by the Cistercians. The bishop of the diocese is owed an explanation from the Cistercians.

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5:28 pm
Are you trying to suggest the bishop of the diocese was unaware of this scandal in his diocese and is only now due an explanation from the Cistercians? This is rolling on in the public domain two years, Seamus!

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6:23,
I’m suggesting he has been given explanations previously about the scandal.
The Abbot General asked for a Regular Visitation. The abbot has resigned. Any bishop of such a diocese would be owed an explanation.

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