My dear brother bishop Thomas,

Recently, I have received information from a devout individual about Silverstream Priory and its aberrant founder, Dom Mark Kirby. The credibility of this individual cannot be disputed because the individual has been a benefactor to the community since its establishment. During a recent visit to Silverstream – my source made enquiries into the whereabouts of Dom Kirby.

The individual was told that Dom Kirby had taken a twelve month leave of absence from Silverstream Priory. Is this true or was the individual told a blatant lie by a monk of Silverstream?

So, the purpose of the present is to enquire into the location of Dom Kirby and to unpack the competing narratives that surround his departure from the Priory.

Because Silverstream Priory is an institute of diocesan right – canonical responsibly for the Priory and its members is the sole responsibility of the Ordinary of the Diocese of Meath. And that is you, Bishop Deenihan. It is, of course, a heavy burden for a Cork-born bishop.

It has not been denied that Dom Kirby left Silverstream Priory WITHOUT permission and that he went to the Netherlands accompanied by two novices. It is understood that he may have been present at the Benedictine convent in Tegelen, Limburg in the south-east of Holland. So, my brother bishop, which narrative about the departure from Silverstream is correct? Did Dom Kirby flee or did he request a leave of absence? Are you prepared to tell us where Dom Mark Kirby is resident at the moment? If not; why not?

Did Dom Kirby submit a written petition to you his Ordinary to take a leave of absence from Silverstream Priory for a period of twelve months? If so, did you approve his request in writing? Have you rendered a Decree granting Dom Kirby permission to reside outside Silverstream for the said period of twelve months in accordance with the statutes of Silverstream? Did you consult with the Dom Elijah (the prior of Silverstream with a known addiction to gay pornography) about Dom Kirby’s petition? If so; what was his view?


If, Dom Kirby has fled Silverstream without permission — has a warning being issued ordering him to return to the Priory? If he does not return — are you as the Ordinary of Silverstream Priory minded to begin the process to have Dom Kirby laicised for disobedience?

If you granted permission to Dom Kirby to reside outside the Priory for a period of twelve months the following questions naturally follow.

Did you as the Ordinary grant Dom Kirby a Letter of Good Standing? Is Dom Kirby permitted to present himself as a priest? Is Dom Kirby permitted to publicly celebrate the Eucharist outside Silverstream Priory? Does Dom Kirby have permission to hear confessions? Is Dom Kirby permitted to wear his monastic habit?

I have several priest sources in the Diocese of Meath. One priest was emphatic that Dom Mark Kirby was incardinated into the Diocese of Meath by Decree from the Diocese of Tulsa, by your predecessor in office, Bishop Michael Smith. Is this true?

If so, Dom Kirby remains your responsibility even if he is not listed as a priest of the Diocese of Meath on the Directory on the website, because, I am told a Priory of diocesan right cannot incardinate clerics. And if Dom Kirby gets up to “mischief” the fact he is not listed on the diocesan directory will not save the Diocese of Meath from liability from any tortious act that Kirby may commit.

When it came to the decision-making about Dom Kirby and his leave of absence, did you consult your go to canonist, Abbot Brendan Coffey of Glenstal? This is the same Abbot Coffey who decided to appoint the disgraced Abbot Richard Purcell (with his proclivity to visit houses of gay ill-repute in Dublin) to the visitation of Silverstream that you ordered because of Purcell’s purported knowledge of monastic finances, so I am told by another one of your priests in Meath.

But a canon lawyer tells me that Abbot Brendan’s knowledge of canon law is weak and that he really should stick to liturgy the subject of his PhD. He also tells me that Abbot Brendan is not particularly well-liked as Abbot of Glenstal and that community regret electing him and that it is possible he will be a one-term abbot.

In light of the known allegations that have been made about Dom Kirby, have you my brother Bishop Thomas, alerted the Ordinary where Dom Kirby is currently residing to apprise him in writing of these allegations? Has the ordinary responded and is he content for Dom Kirby to be resident within his canonical territory?

As we journey towards to the great feast of Pentecost may the Holy Spirit inspire you, now and always.

Your brother bishop,



Dom Elijah Carroll, OSB, Prior of Silverstream Priory.
Abbot Brendan Coffey, OSB, Abbot of Glenstal Abbey.