New report on abuse in the diocese of Kilmore
The diocese of Kilmore has received 10 new allegations of clerical sex abuse against priests since 2010, a new report issued this week praises the way in which senior Church figures responded to the issue.
The Second Review of Child Safeguarding Practice in the Diocese of Kilmore was undertaken by the National Board for Safeguarding Children in the Catholic Church in Ireland and was published this week.
It paints an extremely positive picture of the work done by Church management in the diocese in relation to ensuring the safety of children and the management of those against whom allegations have been made.
The diocese of Kilmore covers most of Cavan, large sections of Leitrim, three parishes in Fermanagh, and parts of Sligo and Meath.
According to the report, allegations have been made with regard to 13 priests in the area since 1975, relating to 17 claims.
However, since the last review of the diocese, conducted in 2010, 10 allegations have surfaced in relation to six priests, four of whom are still living. Regarding the status of the living, accused priests, one is still in ministry and three are out of ministry.
Of the 10 allegations that have been reported since 2010, four relate to one priest, who was later convicted in the courts, and two relate to another cleric. Regarding the cleric against whom four allegations have been made, the report states that he also faced allegations made prior to 2010.
As for the 10 allegations made in the last eight years, seven were reported to gardaí and three were reported to the diocese by An Garda Síochána.
Eight allegations were also reported to Tusla, while one was reported to the diocese by Tusla. The report says Tusla was “aware of” another allegation since the 2010 review.
One priest has been convicted of offences since 2010 and one priest has been found guilty in a canonical process.
The report stresses that the response to the allegations was swift and comprehensive. Case files were “extremely well documented”, all allegations were reported promptly, and actions taken to restrict ministry were taken “decisively” by Bishop Leo O’Reilly.
Bishop O’Reilly said the diocese was “very encouraged by the findings of the review and the words of affirmation and encouragement” from NBSC chief executive Teresa Devlin.
The honesty and integrity with which the church chooses to confront this painful chapter of her history can offer an example and a warning to society as a whole
He continued that “mindful of all those who have been harmed in the Catholic Church in Ireland over the years, we renew our commitment to maintaining the highest possible standards”.
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