12/23/2008

Holy Father must take action

I am disgusted but hardly surprised that the Church have "closed ranks" in relation to the scandal surrounding Bishop Magee in Cloyne.


His handling of child sex abuse allegations mark a return to the dark old days. His handling has been severely criticised by Children’s Minister Barry Andrews, Mr Andrews called on the former Papal secretary to "consider his position".

“In the education system in most other countries there would be lay people involved in the running of the schools and a report as damning as this would make their position untenable,”

“I’ve said I think the Bishop should reflect on that and I think it encapsulates my concerns.”


Bishop Magee's handling of this sad and disgraceful episode has also been criticised by an internal Church inquiry which found that child protection practices in the Co Cork diocese were "inadequate and dangerous", thereby potentially exposing vulnerable young people to further harm.

The explosive Cloyne report, compiled by the National Board for Safeguarding Children (NBSC) and published on the internet last Friday evening, found Bishop Magee took minimal action over a series of child sex abuse allegations against two of his priests.

Newry-born Bishop Magee, who was private secretary to three different Popes, apologised to clerical sex abuse victims in the wake of the damning report but refused to resign.

The 'Voice of the Faithful' lobby, which campaigns for more accountability in the Irish Catholic Church, said that if Bishop Magee fails to step down, Pope Benedict should exercise his supreme authority by demanding his resignation.

Sean O'Conaill, the acting coordinator of 'Voice of the Faithful' said that this response from Bishop Magee was not good enough and he should go.

"The NBSC report on the management of two child protection cases in the diocese of Cloyne shows clearly that, three years after the Ferns report in 2005, an Irish bishop had failed to ensure that the safety of the children of his diocese was paramount in the minds of all those answerable to him for the safety of Catholic children,"

"Other children were thereby still being endangered at this late date -- despite the guidelines supposedly adopted by all Irish bishops in the wake of the Ferns report. We therefore call upon him to resign this office immediately. In the event of his failing to do so, we call upon the Holy Father, His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI, to exercise his supreme authority to request the resignation of Dr Magee."

I have to say that I am angered by the lack of response from Cardinal Sean Brady.

He is supposed to be the Primate of All-Ireland and a Prince of the Catholic Church however he has shown himself unworthy to occupy the seat of St Patrick and St Oliver Plunkett.

He should be operating a zero tolerance policy in relation to child protection policies.

I have to concur with Sean O'Conaill and "Voice of the Faithfull"; if Bishop Magee will not step down by his own choosing then the Holy Father should step in and demand his resignation.

Every moment of delay weakens the authority of the Church and damages the faith of those that the Church is meant to lead.

"But when Jesus saw, he was much displeased, and said unto them, suffer the little children to come unto me, and forbid them not: for of such is the kingdom of God."
Mark 10:14

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