When Treanor accepted the bishopric of D&C he knew that when it came to ALL matters in Down & Connor the buck stops with him!

So, he is responsible for the mess that O’Neill is making of St. Patricks.

He is responsible for the insulting treatment being given to the Soup Kitchen volunteers and clients.

He is responsible for what Big Delia are doing to Poleglass.

He is responsible for the horrific way the staff of the now closed DRC shop were treated.

Noel Treanor has created a mini Kremlin in his Lisbreen palace aka Chateau Noel.

He sits in glorious and remote splendour and through his daily lunches attended by Messrs O’Hagan and Glover he rules/misrules his kingdom.

He started off by spending up to £4 million on renovating Chateau Noel to medieval splendour with £300 door knobs and £100 a roll wallpaper.

Apparently Dean Emeritus Kennedy was brought in as the textiles expert and helped to order the fine curtains that adorn Chateau Noel.

I’m told that lately Noel has installed blinds in his conference room at Lisbreen that cost £32,000?

I’m also told that he become tired of celebrating Confirmations and is despatching Eugene O’Hagan to do them in spite of Cardinal Sarah’s instructions that all diocesan bishops should celebrate all their Confirmations.

It seems that Noel is already in semi retirement in Chateau Noel.

He seems enthusiastic about his regular trips to Europe – especially after he got himself elected as the vice president of the European council of bishops.

Of course he likes his wines too – with regular deliveries of fine wines from Nicholson’s of Crossgar.


Noel has seen to it over the past 10 years that his and my paths never cross.

But I have been studying him very carefully and I have many reports from priests and lay people who met him.

Some of these people have brought me back reports of the sheer luxury of Chateau Noel. One such informer spoke to me only yesterday of the luxury marble that is part of the palace.

Noel Treanor is a cold, cold fish. He may have inherited this coldness in his DNA? He may have some deep underlying psychological defect?

But he is definitely not a people person and he only socialises within the social elite.

He is not a pastor. He never was and he never will be. He is a desk man. His world is cerebral. I’m told that when you are with him a great part of him is elsewhere.

His ten years to date in D&C has been dismal. Priests and people are hugely demoralised.

I am beginning to think that the only legacy he wants to leave is a legacy for having increased the diocesan financial and property portfolios.

And, against this background the Eugene O’Neill’s, and the Delia Neeson’s thrive.

And at the diocesan Kremlin – the O’Hagan’s and the Glovers plot, plan and do the wishes of Chairman Noel.

Chateau Noel is NOT a religious establishment. It is a multi million dollar business with legal. financial and property departments.

And YOU – the unthinking Mass goers and envelope fillers – are helping them laugh all their way to the bank and the airports.


  1. Stop giving to all their collections.
  2. Stop returning all your envelopes.
  3. Cancel your tax concessions to them.
  4. Stop going to their Masses and organise your own Masses or prayer meetings.
  5. Send your children to non Catholic schools.
  6. Have your funerals in undertaker’s funeral chapels and your weddings in hotels and secular wedding venues.
  7. Baptize your children yourselves.







Aidan Keenan

Here are excerpts from the emails:

Dear Pat

I am writing to you as a very concerned parishioner of the great parish of The Nativity in Belfast. Our parish has been ruined by our new PP Fr Aidan Keenan. Keenan has sacked all the secretarial staff and has moved his side kick Delia into their jobs. The two ladies previously in the jobs have worked in our parish for more than twenty years and both are now very ill because of the bullying from Delia and the verbal abuse from Keenan who struggles to control his temper. Delia even has her own rooms in the parish house. Pat please help us. How do we get a new priest? How do we get the jobs of our devoted parish workers back? Keenan is a ticking time bomb and it’s only a better if time before something happens.

A concerned parishioner.

She was in St Matthews with him. Goes on holidays with him and apparently is his personal assistant in every way. He won’t speak on the phone unless she is there.
Can you help us?

We were worried about his erratic behaviour but now we are angry about how he is happy to distance himself from us and allow his woman to ruin our parish. She is living in a house that we are paying for. Is he charging her rent? Does she pay for food? Yet we are expected to contribute to her upkeep!

She has come into our parish and made the secretary and the housekeepers lives hell. Both now are off on so unwell they cant attend work. The poor secretary has been doing her job for 20 years. why should she have to give way because of this lady? Has she no employment rights? Bishop Treanor saw the havoc in St Matthews and had no choice but to move him and now he has dumped him on us. Why was he not sent to St Brigid’s?


Fr Keenan will not arrange a baptism, wedding or funeral without Delia. She accompanied him when he came to see a sick neighbour on a house call. When they telephoned to arrange she said he was too busy to speak and arranged a time to visit with him directly. She then told me that ”they” would be with us in an hour. She arrived with him and the family asked that she stay in the car and he told them that she was his ”assistant” so in she came. WHO IS PAYING FOR HER?


For some reason – I suspect psychological weakness – AIDAN KEENAN is totally under the control of DELIA NEESON since the day he was ordained.

There were problems with him and her in Portglenone, and then St. Matthews and now Poleglass.

The clergy of Down and Connor regard Aidan Keen as “in need of help”.

Delia has become, over years, his surrogate mother and he is not allowed to move without her permission.

She is a physically large woman and very domineering.

I have known her in the past and she is a real Martha Mitty character.

She used to attend Mass and meetings in The Oratory years ago.

One night she was late for a meeting and when she arrived she gave the following excuse:

“I was driving here tonight and I came across the scene of an accident. A man’s let was hanging off. Lucky enough I had my bread knife in the car with me and so I was able to cut the leg off completely and put a tourniquet on the stump”!

Do I have to say anymore.

Yesterday we saw how Noel Treanor is allowing Eugene O’Neill to ruin St. Patrick’s Parish.

Today we see Noel Treanor allowing Aidan and Delia to ruin Poleglass Parish.

Treanor does not give a damn about his people.

All he wants is the security of his 4 million pound palace, extensive trips to Europe and his favourite wines which are delivered by van regularly.






The RC bishop of Down and Connor, Noel Gold Door Handles Treanor wants to take £1,000 a month from a Belfast soup kitchen which feeds the hungry and the poor!

This soup kitchen is based at St. Patrick’s parishin Belfast and was set up by a previous curate of the parish.

In the soup kitchen Father Dominic (who helped start the kitchen, three generous volunteers and Councillor Paul McCusker

The soup kitchen in run by volunteers who cook some of the food in their own homes and bring it to the soup kitchen.

The soup kitchen is run in a disused premises adjacent to the church.

Noel Treanor made a PR and photoshoot visit when the kitchen was opened. As far as I aware he did not roll up his sleeves and perl spuds!

The problem arose recently when a company that runs Northern Ireland cinemas decided to donate £1000 a month to the soup kitchen. Very good of them.

But then Noel Treanor, the new PP Eugene O’Neill (who is not liked by many parishioners) ant the diocesan chief operating officer, Tiernan O’Neill, according to a parish source, heard about the £1000 a month and demanded it be given to the diocese to cover costs.


The volunteers and others are not happy to fulfill the diocesan demand.

As a result, the Presbyterian church down the street has offered the soup kitchen free accomodation in their church.

Also angry about the Treanor/O’Neill demand for the money is the local SDLP councillor Paul McCusker who has been very supportive of the kitchen.

Councillor McCusker

I wonder if the cinema company yet know that their donation to the poor will be taken by Treanor/O’Neill duo?

Will the volunteers bow down to them and let them take the poor’s money?

Why does a wealthy diocese, with millions in property and millions in cash, need this money?

Treanor needs to be careful because he already has a reputation for spending millions on renovating his palace.

He also has a reputation among clery and religious for liking expensive wines, European junket trips, etc.

Noel of Bling and his honcho O’Neill need to keep their hands off the purses of the poor and hungry.

And Chairman O’Neill needs to understand that the Catholic people will not tolerate bully PPs any longer!

Let the Soup Kitchen move down the street to those generous Presbyterians.


Let the Soup K058ff86d239a52b8b13b09c00f8b054c--free-range-religious-humor



CBS News January 2, 2019, 7:38 AM


“The secret not yet told”: Women describe alleged abuse by nuns.
Catholic bishops from across the U.S. are gathering Wednesday for a weeklong retreat on the clergy sex abuse crisis at a seminary near Chicago. Organizers said the retreat, which was requested by Pope Francis, will focus on prayer and spiritual reflection and not policy-making.
The gathering comes as CBS News has also learned of several cases involving nuns accused of sexual misconduct. The Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests – or SNAP – said it doesn’t keep count of sexual abuse allegations, but CBS News’ Nikki Battiste has spoken with several women who recently reported misconduct, ranging from forceful kissing to molestation, all carried out by nuns.
When Trish Cahill was 15 years old she said she confided in Sister Eileen Shaw at a convent in New Jersey. Cahill said she told Shaw things she’d never revealed to anyone about her now-deceased uncle – a priest – whom she claims sexually abused her, starting at age five.


“I would have done anything for her. I would have died for her,” Cahill said. “She gave me everything that was lacking that I didn’t even know I was lacking. I was so broken. She filled in all those pieces.”
She now describes that process as “grooming,” saying Shaw plied her with drugs and alcohol while teaching her how to have sex with a woman.

“I’m with my friends during the day. And I’m with this pedophile nun on the evenings and on the weekends, and in the summer,” Cahill said.
The Catholic Church has been plagued with high-profile abuse scandals but “pedophile nun” is a phrase many people have probably never heard before.
“That’s really a shame. Because there’s a lot of them out there … it’s the secret not yet told,” Cahill said.
Mary Dispenza is trying to change that.
“The demands of chastity and celibacy are unrealistic demands for many of us,” Dispenza said.
Dispenza, a former nun from another congregation, remembers what happened when a superior summoned her to her room.
“I knelt down right next to her and she kissed me all over softly, my face … and I want to say, ‘Oh but it wasn’t bad,’ but it was. And I’ve carried it with me until today,” Dispenza said.
Through her work with SNAP she said she would occasionally hear about abuse or cover-ups by nuns but since the publication of a grand jury report identified hundreds of pedophile priests in Pennsylvania, at least 18 people have contacted her to share stories of abuse by religious sisters.
Asked why we haven’t heard much about abuse by nuns until recently, Dispenza said, “A lot has to do with the culture of nuns which are, they are very, very private by nature.”
Cahill reported her abuse to the sisters of charity of St. Elizabeth in 1994. The congregation paid her a $70,000 out-of-court settlement.
“They had canon lawyers on retainer just for people like me. Shut her up, pacify her, tell her you love her and you’ll pray for her, and send her on her way,” Cahill said.
In a statement, the congregation told CBS News, “The case was investigated immediately when it was reported in 1994 and a settlement was reached that was mutually agreed on by all parties. We believe that the Sisters of Charity acted in a responsible manner.”
We reached out to Sister Eileen Shaw who Cahill said she continued to see for years as an adult. She hung up on Battiste.
The Sisters of Charity removed her from her role as a grade school principal but reports she remains a nun. They’re providing her with food and housing while restricting her from outside ministry. In the meantime, Cahill said the settlement she signed wasn’t enough to help her deal with a lifetime of trauma. But she hopes that her voice can help prevent this from happening again.
“That this is the beginning of many, many times more that I get to speak and I get to educate, and I get to, possibly, prevent this from happening to anyone ever again,” Cahill said.
Cahill said she believes other nuns had to have known what was going on with her. She’s struggled with post-traumatic stress disorder, along with alcohol and drug addiction that she said began with her abuse. The Sisters of Charity said they’re willing to meet with her to address her continuing concerns.



Many of us believe, rightly or wrongly, that there are more male than female paedophiles in the world?

I have met many victims of male paedophiles. I have only met one victim of a female paedophile.

He was about 10 at the time and a neighbour – a married woman – used to sexually abuse him in her kitchen.

It has had a long lasting affect on him. He is in his early 30s now.

I attended a nuns primary school from the age of four. I never witnessed sexual abuse – but I did witness regular psychological and physical abuse perpetrated by the nuns. They seemed to really enjoy beating children up.

I think that many of them were sexually frustrated and children reminded them of what they would never have.

I’m sure there are many cases out in the world of nuns sexually abusing children.




Gay Jesuit candidate attacks ‘ideological militants’

Jay Pearson is as proudly and publicly “gay” as one can be.
“My name is Jay, I am a Greek Byzantine Catholic, I’m a candidate to become a Jesuit and I’m gay.”
He has a YouTube channel; and he is on Twitter and Facebook. In a decidedly awkward turn of phrase, Jay posts his social media content under the handle of “Jay of Proceeding” based on the St. Ignatius-inspired “way of proceeding.”
As a candidate for the Western Province of the Society of Jesus (though he has not stated yet whether as a future priest or future brother),

Jay has gone uber-public about all this in part to “speak out against some bishops as well as those among the ideological militants in the Church who are attempting to blame gay priests specifically and homosexuality generally for the sexual abuse crisis.” Jay vigorously attacks the “scapegoating” of homosexual clergy he believes has been perpetrated by bishops like the late Bishop Robert Morlino of Madison, Wisconsin and Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò.
Jay claims the core problem here is that these “IMs” (his term for “ideological militants”) have a “perversely persisting, fundamental lack of understanding of what ‘gay’ actually is. There are, unfortunately, those who see ‘gay’ as just a sexual perversion unto itself, and that’s wrong. And we know that’s wrong; we’ve had decades of data to prove that.”
Jay says “we know” that “gay” is “not a perversion” because such boys and girls “knew they were gay” long before puberty. “It’s just part of our diversity, it’s part of our colour, it’s part of who we are.” The real problem is that the “IMs” need “education” and “encounter” because ideological militants don’t really know Jesus Christ. Jesus Himself can “enlighten” minds. Such minds are needed for the “wheel of change” that Jay insists the Church desperately needs.
You see, Jay’s being “gay” is crucial to his freedom as imago Dei — image of God. He absolutely must let all people know he is “gay.”
“As a candidate to be a Jesuit, this is key. … [A]s a Catholic, I cannot be true to the Gospel if I am in a closet. … I cannot be true to my ministry if I am in the closet.”
This is, in fact, his “message” to bishops like Bishop Morlino and Archbishop Viganò, he says: “I am image of God, and you do not get to judge me.”


I was very impressed by what Jay said.

He did not say whether or not he intends to be celibate in the Jesuits.

Jesuits have a VOW of chastity.

I do not like Church Militant or Michael Voris.

They are nut cases.

The RC church has to get its act right on sexuality and homosexuality.

I like a lot of what Jay says.



Yesterday a reader asked the following question?


If it was I never came across in when I did moral theology in St. John’s in Waterford.

But I was instructed in two other interesting topics by Monsignor John Shine.


In older times babies in the womb who were malformed and not expected to survive were referred to as “monsters”. I think it was a reference to a very old belief that a malformed or disabled child was seen as a punishment from God.

Of course the RC Church would have still believed that such children had souls that had to be saved and those born dead could not be baptised and their souls would be “lost” in Limbo. And of course, at that time unbaptised babies could not be buried in consecrated grounds and were often buried on family land.

So, the think was that it was vital to get to them in the womb and baptise them while they still had life in them.

So trainee priests were taught how, with the help of midwives and doctors. to baptise such children in the womb!

The midwives or doctors would prepare a pipette  with a long spout and fill it with sterilized water which the priest would make into holy water.


Then with the medics help the pipette would be inserted into the woman’s womb and the priest would squeeze the water over the baby and pronounce the words of baptism.

This meant that the baby was saved and prevented from being sent to Limbo.

It could also then receive a church funeral and buried in a Catholic graveyard.


The other topic that we were lectured on was what to do if a fly got into the chalice at Mass after the consecration.

The problem was that after the consecration we Catholics believe that the wine has become the Precious Blood and we have a responsibility to let nothing untoward to happen.

So the instruction was:

Take the fly out of the chalice and squeeze it into an altar cloth called a corporal. 

After the Mass was over you had to burn the fly.

Then you had to wash the cloth and drink the water you had washed it in.


It all goes to show that there were some very strange preoccupations within the Roman Catholic church in the past.






Margaret Ó hÓgartaigh

Martin Tierney 8

A decade later McQuaid, by now archbishop of Dublin, was still concerned about the movements of Irish women.


In April 1944 he wrote to Dr Conn Ward, parliamentary secretary to the Minister for Local Government and Public Health, and informed him that at the ‘Low Week meetings of the Bishops, I explained very fully the evidence concerning the use of internal sanitary tampons, in particular, that called Tampax. On the medical evidence made available, the bishops very strongly disapproved of the use of these appliances, more particularly in the case of unmarried persons.’ ‘Unmarried persons’ was a euphemism for women. Did men actually use Tampax? Were they seen as a contraceptive device? It requires a remarkable gynaecological imagination to see Tampax as a contraceptive. The more pertinent fear, however, was that women might derive sexual stimulation from Tampax. This reflects the cultural anxieties of the era.
McQuaid’s medical advisor was Dr Stafford Johnson, who had studied in Clongowes Wood College and graduated in medicine from UCD in 1914. He took a particular interest in medico-moral issues and was an enthusiastic advocate for Catholic ethics in medicine. Early in 1944, Stafford Johnson wrote to McQuaid requesting the return of the Catholic Medical Guardian, which he had earlier lent to McQuaid, ‘in which there was given the pronouncement of the English hierarchy on internal tamponage’. With an ill-disguised sinister tone, Stafford Johnson explained that an ‘interesting development has occurred. Tampax has been off the market here for over a year and a half. One of our Knight Chemists [Stafford Johnson was a Supreme Knight of Columbanus] has just rung me up to say it is about to be in stock once more but has not been delivered from the agent.’ The ‘moral dangers’ of Tampax were pointed out to the chemist and the crisis was averted.

It was 1944 after all! The obsession with female fertility so concerned the archbishop that certain middle-class Catholic girls’ schools were discouraged from playing hockey since the twisting movements were alleged to cause ‘hockey parturition’, that is, infertility. Hence lacrosse was favoured. The latter activity did not necessitate as much midriff movement. While these students were physically active, it was within the confines of an all-female environment. Schools under the management of the Loreto sisters participated in their own sports event from 1905. The Loreto Shield was introduced specifically for athletics, 23 years before women were allowed to compete at the Olympic Games in athletics. Students at various Sr Louis schools played a variety of games from basketball to camogie.
Thelma Hopkins (second left), Maeve Kyle (third right) and Mary Peters (second right) departing for the 1958 Empire Games, Cardiff. (Seán and Maeve Kyle)

As long as women were not flaunting themselves in front of males, it was possible to pursue sporting activities. The Women’s Amateur Athletic Association (a women-only organisation) was to have a particular impact on the development of athletics for women in Northern Ireland. Furthermore, when the Northern Ireland Amateur Athletic Association appointed Franz Stampf as coach in the 1950s, he worked with Thelma Hopkins, who went on to break the world record (in May 1956) as well as to win an Olympic silver medal (the following December) in the high jump. Hopkins remembered that when she first played hockey for Ireland ‘we had to wear long black stockings and tunics down to our knees. Really, it was extremely difficult to play. But in the North, we had a lot of support from the men, mainly because Stampfl was there and his athletes were taken seriously.’ It may be no accident that Maeve Kyle (née Shankey), who was born in Kilkenny and played hockey for Trinity College and Ireland, did not become involved in athletics until she married an athletics coach, Seán Kyle, and moved to Ballymena, Co. Antrim. In 1956 she became the first Irish woman to compete in athletics for the Republic of Ireland at the Olympic Games.
As late as the 1960s McQuaid was still concerned with ‘unnatural pleasures’ associated with female gymnastics, especially the pommel horse.


He was apparently unaware of the unnatural pain associated with the event. Both McQuaid’s and later commentators’ obsession with female activity have blinded many to the varieties of activities in which women could indulge, but the sensual sight of mixed athletics did not become a reality in Ireland until the 1960s.
(Margaret Ó hÓgartaigh is based at the Stout Centre, Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand.)


Imagine the Archbishop of Dublin being concerned about women using Tampax in case it gave them any sexual pleasure!

That was CATHOLIC IRELAND from 1925 until 1970.

That’s the Catholic Ireland that Sisyphus Martin in Armagh, Gay is like Downs Syndrome Doran in Sligo and Nasty Phonsie in Waterford wants to bring us back too.

The monthly time for many women can be both painful and distressing.

Wouldn’t it be good if it also afforded them some pleasure?

And what is wrong with pleasure. It is God given.

These dirty ould so and so’s  wanted to deprive us all of pleasure when they were pleasuring themselves with children, men, women, money and power themselves.

As a priest said to me one time:

“Pat, they would not let us get rid of our semen and it went to heads and made us mad”.





The talk in Rome and Ireland is that there will be very big changes in the Archdiocese of Dublin this year.

My sources in Rome and Ireland tell me that Archbishop Diarmuid Martin (74) will retire before June of this year.

A “dark horse” replacement for Diarmuid is widely rumoured to be Father Gareth Byrne who is an expert in Catholic education based at the Mater Dei Institute and Dublin City University.


Father Byrne also assists every weekend in the united parishes of Clontarf in North Dublin.

One source said he would be named soon as coadjutor archbishop of Dublin.

Of course there is another serious contended for the post in the Vatican based Bishop Paul Tighe – a native of Dublin.


However it is believed in some quarters that Paul Tighe wants to continue his upward career in Rome and that many in Rome see him as an asset the Vatican would not want to lose at this time because of his communication skills.



Added to the need for a new archbishop is the fact that the two auxiliary bishops of Dublin are to retire this year – Eamon Walsh and Raymond Field.


These two auxiliaries have had a very unhappy career. They were caught up in the Dublin abuse enquiry and Diarmuid Martin put them under pressure to resign. They agreed but then Rome rejected their resignations.

Diarmuid Martin and the two of them have had an estranged relationship and there were priests and people who did not like this.

And while Diarmuid Martin was good with the abuse crisis and the media he had a poor relationship with the Dublin priesthood.

Sadly, many Dublin priests are looking forward to his departure and a new regime.

Diarmuid himself has looked very stressed in recent times and there are rumours about his health.

I’m sure he will be glad to retire – maybe with one regret – that he was never made a cardinal?

Dublin needs a new archbishop and two new auxiliary bishops.

And out in the world the Irish Catholic church is dying on its feet, losing all credibility and will exist from now in in a hostile and anti-clerical society.

And all the while the Vatican is allowing women hysterectomies in LIMITED situations and poor Amy Sisyphus Martin is going around trying to restart the Irish Abortion War.

As Albert Camus said:

“The gods had condemned Sisyphus to ceaselessly rolling a rock to the top of a mountain, whence the stone would fall back of its own weight. They had thought with some reason that there is no more dreadful punishment than futile and hopeless labour”



img-20151106-wa0000 - copy

I have just invented a new and better name for Amy Martin – SISYPHUS.

He is trying to turn around social progress in Ireland and bring us back to a Confessional Catholic State.

He is on Mission Impossible!






When I started primary school in 1956 in Carlow, Ireland, the nuns insisted that we bring in a penny that was to go to the “Black Babies”.

Now, as a reader commented the other day – some of these black babies are now coming back as black priests to address the priest shortage here in the West.

Some of these appointments are working well – while others are not.

I was a bit shocked when a reader told us the other day that their new African priest was operating a second hand car business from the church car park!

Of course we must remind ourselves that Irish priests for generations have been involved in businesses as well as being priests.

The former parish priest of Downpatrick in County Down, Monsignor Joe Maguire, was involved in running a family garage and hotel in Belfast and in County Down. He was also a tyrant PP who was very hard on his curates.


Many Irish priests have been wealthy either in their own right or because they came from wealthy families.

Priests I have known have also involved themselves in buying race horses, professional betting and in the buying and selling of antiques.

There are a number of problems that seem to be raising their heads with priests from Africa:

  1. Having come from a poor background they can become very materialistic and grasping in our capitalist societies.
  2. Because of their ordination they can see themselves as superior to lay people.
  3. Because of their cultures they can have a poor opinion of the place of women.
  4. They are often known for regarding celibacy as counter cultural for them.

On of the biggest problems that African bishops about their priests coming on a temporary appointment in the West is that they will not want to return to their own dioceses after their temporary appointment here. They have a better life in the West and therefore want to sever their ties with their poorer dioceses back home.

Of course we know that many missionary priests from the West went to places life Africa and abused their positions there – seeking and having sex with the natives.

I knew of one situation with an Irish missionary society where there were 17 priests in a particular region only 1 remained celibate and the other 16 had relationships with native women and men. This big story of all these “goings on” has yet to be told.

One of the themes that came out of the Second Vatican Council was that Catholic missionaries should be sensitive to the cultures they were entering and attempt to present Christianity in a culturally sensitive way.

I think we have now come to a time when we have to ask if it is appropriate to address the shortage of priests with priests from very different cultures?

The RC Church is doing this to stop them having to address the questions of a married clergy and a female clergy.

Short term solutions are not always good long term solutions.



French cardinal faces child abuse trial with 5 others

posted January 05, 2019 at 05:54 pm
by AFP

Lyon, France—The highest-profile Catholic cleric to be caught up in a pedophile scandal in France is to go on trial on Monday charged with failing to report a priest who abused boy scouts in the 1980s and 90s.
Cardinal Philippe Barbarin, the archbishop of Lyon, is to stand trial along with five others from his diocese over allegations that they helped cover up abuse in one of the parishes in the area.
The 68-year-old, an arch-conservative, is one of the most prominent Catholic figures in France who faces up to three years in prison and a fine of 45,000 euros ($54,000) if convicted of failing to report the abuse.
He denies the allegations.
France’s Catholic church has been roiled in recent years by allegations against predator priests which have come to light in the wake of a global move by victims to come forward with evidence.
Clerics have been denounced in countries as far afield as Australia, Brazil, Chile, Ireland, and the United States, leading Pope Francis to promise to rid the church of the scourge that has done enormous damage to its standing.
The scandal in Lyon first came to public attention in 2015 when a former scout went public with allegations that a local priest, Bernard Preynat, had abused him as a child 25 years ago.
The scout, Francois Devaux, who has since formed a victims’ group, also filed a complaint against Barbarin, the priest’s superior, alleging that he had known about the abuse but had covered it up.
After six months of investigation and 10 hours of interviews with Barbarin, investigators dropped the case in 2016 after concluding that the allegations against him were either too old or impossible to prove.
But a group of victims succeeded in having the probe reopened which led to Barbarin and the others, including the archbishop of Auch and the bishop of Nevers in France, being ordered to stand trial.
“We hope this time to have a ruling that will be clear and obvious for everyone,” Devaux said before the start of the trial.
His victims’ group, La Parole Liberee (Freed Speech), began with a handful of people, but soon received calls and testimony from a total of 85 people claiming to have been victims of Preynat in Lyon.

The priest was prevented from leading scout groups after he was first denounced in 1991, but was later allowed to teach to children and held positions of authority in parishes until the scandal surfaced in 2015.
A lawyer for Barbarin, Jean-Felix Luciani, said the cardinal was counting on the trial to “re-establish some facts because you don’t repair one injustice by creating another one.”
The story of Devaux, the victim who brought the scandal to light, is to be told in a film this year called “Grace a Dieu” (“Thanks to God”) which has been made by French director Francois Ozon.
The priest at the centre of the scandal, Preynat, has acknowledged abusing boys during interviews with investigators.
He is set to go on trial this year charged with statutory rape.
Two other French religious figures have been convicted of failing to report child abuse in the past: the archbishop of Bayeux-Lisieux, Pierre Rican, in 2001, as well as the former bishop of Orleans, Andre Fort, last year.
The head of the Vatican’s powerful Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, Spanish Archbishop Luis Francisco Ladaria Ferrer, has also been accused of complicity in the alleged cover-up in Lyon.
In correspondence with Barbarin about the priest, the Vatican’s number three had advised the cardinal to take “necessary disciplinary measures while avoiding public scandal” — seen as a warning to keep the abuse quiet.
The Vatican has cited his immunity from prosecution and he will not go on trial.
Barbarin has retained the support of Pope Francis who met with him at the Vatican in October 2017 shortly after he was ordered to stand trial.
“I have only one judge who is the Lord,” the cardinal said recently on a trip to the holy town of Lourdes in southern France.


Its good to see the French taking a cardinal to court for covering up child abuse.

They have also processed other bishops.

The RC church has proven that they cannot police themselves.

More and more the civil authorities need to oversee this organisation

The best cure for abuse cover up is the prosecution and imprisonment of bishops.

A bishop covering up abuse should be subjected to significant custodial sentences.