John Magee, Bishop of Cloyne, Must Resign

 Posted by on December 22, 2008  Add comments
Dec 222008
 

John Magee, the Catholic bishop of Cloyne, has apologised to victims of clerical sex abuse, but the apology is designed solely to save Magee’s own hypocritical arse.  John Magee couldn’t care less about the victims of sexual abuse as long as his pervert priests are protected and he himself stays out of the shit.

You see, John Magee, Bishop of Cloyne, is an arrogant, cynical prick who couldn’t give one flying fuck about the victims of clerical sexual abuse.  For six months, John Magee prevented the publication of a report about abuse allegations in his own diocese because he didn’t like what it said about him.  It was only when too much pressure built up that he was forced to release the report before he started to look like an even worse bastard than he already is.

John Magee is a fucking disgrace and should either quit now or be kicked out.

This report, by Ian Elliott of the National Board for Safeguarding Children in the Catholic Church in Ireland (NBSC), was highly critical of Magee’s attitude to complaints of sexual abuse.  It was also highly critical of his failure to set up any proper mechanisms to deal with complaints, and it found that his diocese had put children in danger because of its inability to deal properly with allegations of abuse.

Because John Magee carries total responsibility for whatever his diocese does about abuse claims, you can read the report as a direct criticism of him, but of course, as we all know, Princes of the Church don’t like to be questioned.  (This fellow, incidentally, used to be Private Secretary to three Popes, and therefore it’s fair to assume that he carries more than his fair share of self-importance).

The NBSC was set up by the church when it felt it could no longer hide from the law.  It is  genuinely independent of the bishops and in Cloyne it investigated how the diocese handled allegations against two priests of the diocese.  This is an important distinction to make: it did not investigate the allegations themselves, but looked instead at how Magee and his associates dealt with them.  Magee has tried to use this to distract attention from his own complete failure to grasp the significance of abuse, by emphasising that the allegations are unproven, but this time he’s in the shit.  You see, for once, it IS about him.

How did Magee suppress the report for so long?  Simple.  By old-fashioned bluster, suggesting that it contained something defamatory about him.  In other words, this miserable old swine was threatening to sue the body set up by his own church to investigate the way it handles sexual abuse allegations.

So not only is Magee a hypocrite who cares for nothing but his own hide.  He’s also a miserable old bully.  The very man to have protecting your children from rapists, wouldn’t you say?

But it doesn’t stop there.  Not only did Magee and his cronies try to suppress the report, but so did the State, in the person of Barry Andrews, Minister for Children.  Andrews has had this report since it was completed, but has continued to hide behind the lie that he knew nothing about it and that the HSE was conducting its own investigation.  This is untrue.  This is a deliberate falsehood, and Barry Andrews has been lying to the Dáil and to the Irish people.

To quote directly from the report:

On the 15 February 2008, the Chief Executive Officer of the National Board for Safeguarding Children in the Catholic Church (NBSC) met with two senior officials within the Department of Health and Children. The purpose of the meeting was to update the Department on the ongoing initiatives that the NBSC had embarked upon in order to embed best practice in the field of safeguarding children within the Church.

At the conclusion of that meeting, the CEO was informed that a complaint had been made to the Minister regarding the practice of the Diocese of Cloyne in a particular case. A copy of the correspondence was given to the CEO and he was asked to investigate the circumstances outlined in the complaint, and to report back his findings.

There you have it.  The Minister’s own department asked Elliott to investigate this case, and he has had the report in his possession since June 2008.

The lying fuck.

Let me give you some background on the report that mortally offended the old Bishop.

Elliott studied the bishop’s handling of allegations against two priests: A and B.

He concluded that child protection practice was … inadequate and in some respects dangerous. According to Elliott, he saw no evidence that risk had been appropriately identified or managed, thereby potentially exposing vulnerable young people to further harm.

The first complaint to Elliott was from a priest who claimed to have been sexually abused by Priest A as a child, and who was unhappy with the way he had been treated when he reported it to the diocese.  Elliott travelled to Cloyne in February 2008 to find out more, but Magee’s people wouldn’t give him enough information to properly investigate the handling of the case.  He subsequently wrote to Magee asking for the fuull case records.

In April, Elliott was contacted on behalf of a woman who described serious sexual abuse for five years by another priest of the diocese, Priest B, including rape when she was thirteen.  This woman had also complained to Magee and Monsignor O’Callaghan, his adviser, describing what had happened.  According to Elliott’s report, this woman suffered additional trauma as a result of perceived lack of acceptance and support. In other words, this woman came to the conclusion that Magee and O’Callaghan couldn’t give a shit about her.

Later that month, Magee met Elliott and handed over the papers for the two cases.

It’s worth looking at the cases in more detail.

Priest A

The complainant XY, a priest of the Diocese, first told the Bishop in December 2004 that he had been abused, but didn’t identify the perpetrator.  A year later, in May, he told Dean Goold who the abuser was.

Four months later Magee met Priest A, following which the priest resigned.

This was Magee’s idea of urgency: on hearing such grave allegations, he waited four months before removing somebody who might well be abusing more children right now.

It took Magee six months for the diocese to contact the police and even then they didn’t identify the accused, though their letter does name the victim. Be clear about that.  Magee and his people protected the identity of the accused from the police, but they exposed the victim in the most invasive and hurtful manner possible.

According to Elliott:

Two important points should be noted. Firstly, the delay in reporting was supposedly justified in the view of the Diocese, by the unwillingness of the complainant to talk to the Gardai. In short, the attitude of the complainant was seen as the determining factor as to whether a complaint was reported or not. This is an obvious and concerning misunderstanding of what good child protection practice dictates.

Secondly, the failure to name the alleged perpetrator to the Gardai was not exceptional. Indeed, it is described as “their normal practice” by the Bishop in a signed minute of a meeting which took place on 25 May 2006 involving the Bishop, XY and his parents. (The minute was produced by the Bishop himself.)

Got that?  It was not their normal practice to tell the police who the alleged perpetrator might be. The bishop himself has said that it is normal practice to conceal the identity of an alleged rapist from the police.

Who does this man think he is?  Clearly this is not a person willing to submit himself to the law of the land as the rest of us have to.  This is clearly a person who arrived from his cloistered and rarefied existence in Rome, believing himself to be somehow better than the rest of us, and not only better, but also exempt from the normal standards of decent behaviour.

Throughout the case papers for priest A, Elliott goes on, references are made to the pastoral care policy of the Diocese and the need for reconciliation. It is not clear as to what is meant by these references. However, what are glaringly absent are any references to the need to protect vulnerable young people and to act in a timely and effective way to achieve this end.

The minutes of the Case Management Committee that met on 21st of September 2005 to discuss the A case make no mention at all of current risk to young people.  Even though this man is quite possibly a serial rapist, they don’t even bother to ask themselves if he might be a risk to young people today, though they do discuss offering him early retirement.

Priest A’s role in the diocese gave him the opportunity for contact with young people, yet there’s no evidence of any effort to find out if he has raped or otherwise sexually abused other young victims, but this is hardly surprising when you discover the composition of the committee.

The committee, it turns out, is composed entirely of clergy, except for one person, and Elliott remarks that this raises issues about the objectivity of their advice.  Indeed.  A committee composed almost entirely of moral cripples.  Ask my brother if I’m a liar.

Priest B

Priest B was a careers guidance teacher in a local convent school.

In early 1995, PSP and her father told Magee that Priest B had sexually abused her. On 30th March, Magee ordered O’Callaghan to  investigate, with the resulting papers to be placed in the secret archive maintained by the Diocese.

The Diocesan Child Protection Management Committee discussed the case on the 4th July 1995, the 17th July 1995 and the 14th November 1995. During these deliberations, the Committee raised doubts about the quality of the alleged abuse and the victim’s age. They noted that the victim did not want to report the matter to the Gardaí and therefore no report was made by the Diocese.

On the 4th September 1996, a woman, ZW, complained about the relationship between Priest B and her fourteen year old son, V.   The woman also stated that she had had a sexual relationship with Priest B for about a year which gave him frequent access to her house.

On 9th December 1997, another woman, DB, wrote to the Bishop alleging that Priest B sexually abused her during confession in a retreat house.

Magee wrote to Priest B on 14th February 1998, instructing him not to visit schools or have young people in his house, and subsequently placed him on restricted ministry.  There is no formal definition of this term as far as I know, but it seems to mean that he could work as a priest while having no no parish.  Big deal.  Priest B was still allowed to wear clerical garb and still had access to children in his official capacity.  Four years later, in 2002, Monsignor O’Callaghan floated the idea of Priest B returning to full ministry, which would require the agreement of the complainants.  In other words, he contemplated approaching victims on behalf of their abuser, and asking them to make this concession.  Or to put it another way, he had no idea what he was dealing with and no understanding whatever of people’s feelings.

O’Callaghan also discussed other options with B, including retiring on sick leave, and taking legal action to clear his name.

Finally, in January 2003, when ZW and her son V came back to the bishop, the police were informed for the very first time, seven years after the original complaint to the bishop.

On 17th November 2005 a woman called NM alleged serious sexual abuse by Priest B, including rape that started when she was thirteen and went on until she was eighteen.  It seems the penny had finally dropped with Magee that this man might be a sexual predator and a serial rapist.  The police were informed.

Magee, it seems, is no rocket scientist.

O’Callaghan wrote to Magee in January 2006 to ask how he should deal with the Gardaí’s queries on the B case. According to Elliott’s report, it is clear from the papers contained in the file that the policy of the Diocese in their contacts with the Gardaí was to give “minimal” information. In particular, it is indicated that no information was to be volunteered in respect of any previous complaints involving this priest.

Elliott interviewed Magee and O’Callaghan in May 2008 and asked them certain questions arising from the cases under review.  Magee and O’Callaghan accepted that there were “lacunae” — as they put it — in their child protection policies and practice.  This is typical mealy-mouthed bishop-speak.  Lacunae my arse.  There were huge gaping holes, not only in their policies but in themselves.  Gaps of ethics, gaps of moral comprehension and an almost complete absence of human empathy for the victims.

Lacunae.  I feel contempt for any man who would seek to obscure the reality of his behaviour behind such a word.  Lacunae.

This is such a revealing choice of terminology that it deserves a paragraph all to itself.  This word exposes Magee, the uncertain farm boy who went to Rome and learned a new vocabulary, and who yet fails to realise that not everyone was as ignorant as he was when he went away.

Lacunae.  A word beloved of the likes of people such as Magee for  obfuscation.

It’s pathetic, as is Magee himself.  Pathetic, limited and irrelevant.

The two boys, Magee and O’Callaghan, acknowledged to Elliott that they recognised the need to ensure that all information relating to an allegation of abuse is conveyed to the appropriate authorities fully and in a timely way, and they accepted that this has not happened in these two cases.

Did they now?  Wasn’t that nice of them?

They also told the NBSC that a substantial and radical re-appraisal of child protection policies and practice in the Diocese, but there was no evidence to support the claim.  This was, in fact nothing but waffle, as it turned out.  It didn’t prevent them fulminating and attempting to bully all around them in an effort to have the report suppressed, and therefore you’d have to question their sincerity in everything else they said at that meeting when their backs were to the wall.

They are,a pair of two-faced, duplicitous old bastards trying to waffle their way out of a problem, just as they’ve been doing all their lives.  They are, in fact, the familiar, dishonest, hypocritical face of the Catholic church.

Report Conclusions

Elliott in his report concluded that the diocese of Cloyne is significantly deficient in child protection practice.  He concluded as follows:

  • The Bishop is the responsible person in these matters. He holds the authority and the responsibility to ensure that actions are taken and children are protected.
  • The bishop had no right to delegate any of these responsibilities to an adviser.
  • The diocese, and therefore the bishop as the responsible person, fails to focus on the child victim.
  • the diocese fails to quickly protect the victim.  It fails to cooperate with statutory agencies investigating abuse and protecting children.
  • It shares information reluctantly and what it does share is limited.
  • It gives away as little as possible.
  • Some people on the Bishop’s staff think this grudging attitude is a correct way to behave.
  • The Child Protection Management Committee is focussed on the needs of the accused priest, not the child.
  • The committee never considered the continuing risk to children.
  • There was no understanding or appreciation of the nature of the issues that they were dealing with
  • Actions when taken, were inappropriately delayed and were minimal in content.
  • The Bishop didn’t realise that by allowing individuals, against whom an allegation has been made, to continue to wear the vestments of a priest may facilitate further abuse of young people.
  • The diocese could be seen as complicit in abuse by not removing predatory sexual abusers from the priesthood.
  • Children have been placed at risk of harm through the inability of the diocese to respond appropriately.
  • The diocese  failed to act effectively to limit the access to children by individuals against whom a credible complaint of child sexual abuse was made.
  • The competence of those involved in this area of work in the Diocese has to be questioned. Risk has not been recognised and responded to appropriately.
  • The responses of the Diocese could be described as ill advised, and too little, too late.

This is a damning report.  An absolute failure by Magee to discharge his responsibility to victims of abuse.  An absolute failure by the bishops as a whole, even now, to comprehend what sexual abuse is and how it should be handled.

These guys still don’t get it.  They still think they’re above the law of the land, and in this it seems that at least some government ministers are inclined to agree with them.  How about that?  A minister of our elected government who doesn’t believe our sovereign state has authority to challenge the likes of Magee about his policy on handling criminals.

________________________

Also:

Bishop Magee of Cloyne Finally Steps Down

Cardinal Seán Brady’s Weasel Words

Cloyne Sex Abuse Case — Cardinal Brady Stands By Magee

Bishop Magee — Where Do You Go To My Lovely?

What Is Desmond Connell Trying To Keep Secret?

The Brothers of Charity: Raping Your Children Since 1883 !!

Cardinal Error: Brady Gets the Red Hat

Half God, Half Biscuit

Oh those feckin old bishops!

They Just Don’t Get It, Do They?

________________________

Elsewhere:

Irish Times

Sunday Tribune

Rape Crisis Centre Calls for Resignation

  69 Responses to “John Magee, Bishop of Cloyne, Must Resign”

Comments (69)
  1.  

    Won’t be long before they’ll have u taken out, imagine the impudence of a mere citizen commenting on the high and mighty catholic church! I ask u, what were u thinking? Go straight to confession and don’t forget to bend over.

  2.  

    It is not a case of resigning.

    The Bishop should be charged with obstructing the course of justice. Just like you would be Bock if you knew of a felony and did not inform the Guards.

    So arrest the bollocks. That would encourage the others to step up to the mark.

  3.  

    bock you have issues with Catholic church, why so bitter?

  4.  

    There are many unsubstantiated rumours as to why Magee ‘fell from grace’ at Vatican HQ, and that he was moved sideways into Cloyne. Moving sideways in the manner of a scuttling crab is standard operational evasive procedure in the Roman Catholic church. Someone should file a complaint with the Garda, Barry Andrews for instance.

  5.  

    -Anonymous, only one capital letter in your comment. Interesting choice.

    A fine, scalding kettle of water poured over their bollox there Bock. I think KevanB is right there. It’s obstruction of justice. We should throw the cunt in jail, he’ll know all about sexual abuse then.

  6.  

    Unstranger — I’m terrified.

    KevanB — Arresting would be good.

    Anonymous — The Catholic church are the ones with issues. Sexual and moral issues that they have trouble getting past. I have anger. Clearly you can’t tell the difference between justified rage and bitterness, and that reveals much about you. Thank you for sharing your secrets. It was very courageous of you.

    Conan — Why was Magee kicked out of the Vatican?

    Craic — The poor old bish. Have you no compassion? Oh wait, of course you have. You aren’t a bishop.

  7.  

    Yet again we see the bastards cowering and whispering amongst each other, running for cover and attempting to perform another CYA job.
    That’s it boys, Tell em nothing, try the mushroom treatment for as long as you can, but eventually enough people get abused to not make it possible to cover up for this filthy bastard any more.
    Wait and watch the paperwork and files disappearing under cassocks….

    Why can we we not as kevin suggests just clap the lot in jail for obstruction of justice and as one previous Head of the church suggested “Let god sort them out”.

  8.  

    According to a report in the Irish Examiner on 20 December; “Despite extensive Garda probes, the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) decided that two priests in the Cloyne diocese accused of child abuse should not face criminal charges.

    Gardaí confirmed that “full and thorough” investigations were carried out into each of the allegations levelled against Fr A and Fr B, both priests in the Cloyne diocese.

    But after examining one substantial Garda file in relation to Fr A and three files in relation to Fr B, the DPP directed that neither priest should face criminal prosecution.”

    So maybe the DPP should resign as well – and be clapped in jail for obstruction of justice!

    On the other hand maybe the editors of the Irish Times and Independent should be clapped in jail for failing to report those rather significant facts. The Irish Times is supposed to be the “Newspaper of record” in this country.

  9.  

    The local Garda Superintendant should also be jailed for obstruction of justice. The following is a further quote from the Irish Examiner on 20 December (also ignored by our “Newspaper of Record”):

    Supt McCarthy said each of the allegations relating to both priests were investigated “fully and thoroughly”.

    “Substantial and comprehensive Garda files were prepared. We took the investigations as far as possible and all possible evidence was gathered,” he said.

    A single Garda file in relation to Fr A was forwarded to the DPP in November 2006 but the DPP directed in February 2007 that no prosecution should follow.

    Three substantial files relating to allegations against Fr B were forwarded to the DPP some time later and in each of the cases, the DPP directed that no prosecution should follow.

    Supt McCarthy confirmed that there are no current investigations relating to alleged child abuse by priests in the Cloyne diocese.

  10.  

    -Bock
    Of course I’ve no compassion. I sold my soul for craic and ceol.

    I can’t believe that in this day and age our spineless government let this foul organisation pretend that it still has power. Clearly the days of canvasing the parish priest are long from over.

  11.  

    The leaders of the Church have failed just about everyone in their handling of the abuse. The Church should have taken the opportunity to clear out all the old leaders and past thinkers that stood idly by and created the culture in which abusers were moved from parish to parish. As an organisation it failed to purge its leaders when those leaders failed. Actions like this are not uncommon in big organisations (Banks, Government etc.) but by doing so the Church has been left in a weakened state. All those priests that have a genuine vocation and work with the sick, dying and elderly are in many ways tarnished. It is not too late for the Church leaders to do the honourable thing and clear out and report those that delayed reporting abusers, retire the ones that through incompetence failed children and replace them with people that act with integrity.

  12.  

    Good Morning Bock,
    Thank you so much for your writings. I’m sure Magee knows more about the goings on inside the Vatican than anyone else. After all, he shared the same bedroom (with a partition, for privacy) with the last three popes.(before Benedict)

    I know for a fact Magee is a fucking liar, because on my last visit to his home (palace, as big as a nice hotel) He told me lie after fucking lie. I know the bollox since he was in the lap of luxury in Rome. (I’m an ex-cleric, who left for the love of a woman, then aged 29) I don’t have any time or respect for Magee, he is just one lazy rich bollox.

  13.  

    There’s an article this morning in the Indo on Pope Ratzinger condemning homosexuality. You hear very little from him on paedophilia though. I think they see nothing wrong in it, but find the victims an irritant. Can you imagine the damage physical and psychologically they’ve done to so many people. It’s beyond my comprehension.

  14.  

    Zucchini — They’d get some fright if God turned out to be real.

    Kilbarry1 — This isn’t about the priests. It’s about Magee’s failure to deal properly with complaints, but of course, you knew that, didn’t you?

    Nice try!

    Craic — Looks like it’s still going on.

    Pheasantfukker — The RC church has no moral authority left.

    Elle — They don’t get it.

  15.  

    “I think they see nothing wrong in it, but find the victims an irritant.” –elle

    Having had a semi-personal involvement with this subject, it enrages me and sickens me so much I couldn’t even make a coherent comment.
    All I can say is that I found the post difficult to read — not because of Bock, but because of my own rage.

  16.  

    Bock – Agree with your post – Problem seems to be that the Bishop is answerable to nobody in the jurisdiction and so we have the bizarre situation that the only person who can make Magee resign from his position vis a vis the Education of the children of Cloyne is the Pope! Strange situation for a republic!
    However the Gov’t could and should withdraw his Patronage, which is in their gift and would force his hand. This is the Nuclear option but I think it is called for!

  17.  

    BOCK wrote: “Kilbarry1, This isn’t about the priests. It’s about Magee’s failure to deal properly with complaints, but of course, you knew that, didn’t you?”

    Your post contains a great deal about the allegations against Priest A and Priest B. You might have mentioned in passing (A) that the DPP directed that neither priest should be prosecuted and (B) that the local Garda Superintendant has confirmed that there are NO current allegations being investigated. Yet you talk about the Bishop’s “policy on handling criminals.” WHAT CRIMINALS?

    Actually you probably didn’t know about the dropping of all charges. It was not mentioned by our “Newspaper of Record” last Saturday and the Irish Examiner had one article out of 7 or 8 that discussed it. All of the Examiner’s other articles ignored the issue including their very long editorial that called on the Bishop to resign!

    If Jews were being falsely accused of child abuse, that is how anti-Semitic journalists would handle the story i.e. publish long articles about the allegations and bury the contrary evidence.

    Anti-clericalism has a lot in common with anti-Semiticism. You are aware that several Bishops have had false sex allegations made against them – including Bishop Magee?

  18.  

    Tell me Kilbarry1 will you be writing to the newspapers? And will you be using notepaper with the DeLaSilly letterhead?

    The post concerns a report by an independent body about the abject failure of the bishop to protect children; about an Irish diocese that was found to be putting at risk the safety of Catholic children, and to have risked being seen as complicit in child sexual abuse by failing to take action to remove priests credibly accused of such abuse from the priesthood.

    Why aren’t you asking : Why so many bishops in so many different parts of the world from California to India have failed their people in exactly the same way !

    Not my question mind you, but the question of the Irish branch of the Voice of the Faithful.

  19.  

    -Kilbarry1
    It’s never acceptable to blacken someones name with false allegations. However, it was the NBSC who critised the way Magee handled the ‘accusations’ of sexual abuse. The NBSC is a church organisation. Can it be anti-clerical? Perhaps, but what of Matthew Ring, a priest who left the diocese disgusted with the way Magee handled allegations of sexual abuse? Is he anti-clerical?
    And what is anti-clericalism anyway? Are priests some kind of ethnic minority? Have they suffered generations of oppression? No. The catholic church has enjoyed a position of unquestioned totalitarian power, in Ireland anyway, for well over a millenium during which time they have committed every possible abuse imaginable
    The catholic church and it’s priests are not a victims, they create them.

  20.  

    Kilbarry1,

    It’s the policy that’s being discussed. The policy regarding allegations of abuse and alleged paedophile behaviour. Any and every allegation of sexual abuse of minors — whether it later turned out to be true or not — should have been investigated as a matter of urgency, within DAYS. Anything less is criminal in itself.

    Why the delays? Why the obstruction? Why leave a possible paedophile in situ where he would be in a position to abuse at will for several more months? Or years, as has happened in so many cases?

    There was (and looks like there still is) institutionalised acceptance of deviant criminal behaviour, institutionalised cover-ups, institutionalised obstruction of justice, institutionalised “save our skins and hang onto our money and authority”. (Or what they still consider their authority, despite it having gone down the toilet.)

    If I *personally* (I’m not speaking for Bock) am anti-clerical I have damn good reason to be. And I have only one piece of advice for Catholic priests who may feel they are being unfairly tarred with the same brush as others. Or looked at askance by the population at large. And it’s this:

    It’s not my problem. Get out of that fucking corrupt organisation as fast as you can.

  21.  

    Kilbarry1 — Can’t you read? The problem is Magee’s handling of the complaints.

    Don’t try to distract attention from the issue. You won’t get away with that kind of bullshit here.

  22.  

    Nora

    Actually it is not just the “policy that’s being discussed”. Why do you think the Irish Times and the Irish Independent completely ignored the decision of the DPP and the statement by Garda Supt McCarthy? Why did the Examiner mention it in passing and then bury that aspect of the story? Our anti-clerical journalists are trying to drum up hysteria about paedophiles on the prowl. However “No Clerical Abusers in Cloyne say Gardai” is not the sort of article that incites the mob.

    My understanding of Church policy is that a CREDIBLE allegation of child abuse must be reported to the Gardai. It is true that some Bishops like Martin of Dublin, interpret this in an incredible way i.e. they deem every allegation to be credible unless it is OBVIOUSLY false e.g. if the accused was out of the country or was 2 years old at the time of the alleged rape. (Believe me, I’m not making that one up – although it relates to a Christian Brother not a priest!)

    In contrast it seems that Bishop Magee wanted actual proof of wrongdoing and did not consider that he was getting it – AND the DPP agreed with him. I see from the media reports that some of the accused specifically said that they did not want the Gardai involved. One reason why a person might take that attitude is that he seeks “Compensation” but not a Garda inquiry that might lead to himself being charged with making false allegations.

  23.  

    The issue is Magee’s handling of the complaints. It’s not his business to decide if they’re credible. Church policy is irrelevant. It isn’t the law of the land.

    I think you’re an extremely dishonest person to keep following this line when you know it isn’t relevant. I think you’re so dishonest you must be a priest.

    Are you a priest?

  24.  

    Obviously Kilbarry1, (may I call you Brother Maurice?) you didn’t read this:

    The bishop was first informed of allegations of abuse in 1995. Further complaints against the same priest emerged in 1996 and 1997. The priest continued to work as a career guidance teacher in a convent school until early 1998. Even after this date, he was allowed to wear full priestly garb. In 2006, another very serious allegation of sexual abuse of a young girl was made against him.

    The National Board for Safeguarding Children concluded that

    “the policy of the diocese in their contacts with the gardaí was to give ‘minimal’ information. In particular, it is indicated that no information was to be volunteered in respect of any previous complaints involving this priest”.

  25.  

    It appears to me that the church’s policy on dealing with these complaints is wrong, and way too complex. Their policy should be “Dont come to me, take the complaint to the Guards”. If I ran a business and one of my customers came to me accusing ane of my employees of any crime, I would say, “Go to the cops, I’m not competent, or empowered, to investigate this. I will review my employment of this individual based on the evidence uncovered in the investigation, and subject to the constraints of employment law.” Or something like that. Can anyone tell me any reason why the church should be treated any differently to any other organisation?

    Old clergymen like Magee cant see this, they are too old and church ways are too ingrained to understand that they are just citizens. The real problem though is that our politicians think the same way, as do some of our lay citizens. Otherwise Magee would be arrested for withholding information from the police, and all his colleagues would get the message then, problem solved.

    The point re lacunae is well made Bock. Similarly, I noted that Andrews yesterday couldnt even say the word “resign”, he said Magee should “consider his position”, the mealymouthed fucker. This says a lot, these establishment politicians talk just the same as the establishment clergy, its no coincidence – they cant talk straight or act straight. Happy xmas all.

  26.  

    All just allegations of abuse by individual priests, no evidence – and what happened to being innocent until proven guilty, and if anyone in here was told to resign their job on a mere allegation how would they feel? –
    how would their solicitor feel, more to the point. Meantime, the “defendants” during the Salem Witch trials were all convicted on the “evidence of children
    and hung. Such is hysteria, then and now.

  27.  

    To EssooDee (and Bock)

    Church policy is no different from national policy. In all cases the relevant managers are supposed to report a “credible” allegation to the Gardai. The problem is that some managers (including Bishops) are so gutless that they will treat any allegation as “credible” unless it is obviously and ludicrously false – like accusing someone who was himself a child at the time of the alleged crime.

    As EssoDee points out, Bishops could avoid the issue by refusing to listen and telling the person to go directly to the Gardai. (But what if the complainant sends them a letter – or even an anonymous letter?) In any case the media would scream abuse at the Bishop for his “uncaring” attitude if he refused to listen.

    I gather from the media reports that some (or all?) of the people who contacted Bishop Magee said specifically that they did NOT want to go to the Gardai. The Bishop is being demonised because he respected their wishes. There is an ethical issue here but the practical one is even more important. If a complainant cannot have a private conversation with a Bishop (or Teacher, Doctor or Social Worker) without the latter making a beeline for the police station, why would he speak to them in the first place? Either he goes directly to the Gardai or he does nothing at all.

    Nobody is helped by this kind of hysteria.

  28.  

    EssoDee,

    “they are just citizens” — Exactly. We should have reached that position long ago. Unfortunately they are still getting preferential treatment on the basis of … Zero. Zilch. Gold-embroidered dresses and pointy hats.

  29.  

    Kilbarry1

    Are you a priest?
    Do you have the courage of your convictions?

  30.  

    -Anny
    Magee is not being accused of child abuse. He is guilty of neglegence in regard to the safety of children within the church and it would appear that he has done everything in his power to obstruct the state authorities in their investigations. Investigations that would, one assumes, clear the names of any innocent priests wrongly accused of abuse.
    It’s innocent until proven guilty by due process of law. How can this happen if Magee tries to deliberatly to obstruct this process.

    How would you feel if you went to him because your child said one of his priests had sexually assaulted him and Magee told you I’ll look into it, come back to me in a few years, or if sometime later he came and asked you and your child if you were willing to forgive and forget so the priest could return to work?

    And as for your stupid comparison with the Salem witch trials, I find it insulting, as would I’m sure any victim of abuse. The Salem victims hung because of the ego and religious zealotry of John Hawthorne. He was doing God’s work and so considered himself above the law. Doesn’t that sound familiar..

  31.  

    Anny — This is about Magee’s disgraceful handling of the allegations. An inquiry set up by own church has accused him of putting children in danger.

    He needs to resign now.

    Kilbarry1 — Get your terminology right. The bishop is not being demonised. He is being criticised, and quite properly.

    This man has an explicit policy of giving minimal information about a crime to the police. He’s a disgrace and he needs to go now.

    By your deference towards Magee, and your use of the word “demonised” to twist the facts, I’d guess you’re a priest.

    Are you a priest?

  32.  

    Tell me Kilbarry1 did you leave the De La Silly order because it issued several apologies to abuse victims? What ‘credible’ reason was there for your leaving the order?

  33.  

    Bock (and Nora and Andrew)

    I am not and never have been a priest. (You do recall the McCartyite era in America?).

    40 years ago I was a De La Salle Brother. Have you ever asked anyone who objects to anti-Semitism, if he is a Jewish Rabbi?

    Andrew – My name was NOT Brother Maurice. I have posted articles about my experiences in the Brothers but I have NEVER given my religious name or where I was at any particular time (apart from the novitiate in Castletown, Co. Laois in 1966/67). This is because I do not want to encourage anyone to “Recover Memories” about me. A colleague of mine in the novitiate was recently in court on charges based on Recovered Memory. The Judge directed the jury to acquit him – presumably because RM is not recognised in Ireland. However it is an experience I would prefer not to undergo!

  34.  

    Yes indeed. The McCarthy era was a time when dangerous people were given positions of disproportionate power in society, much like the Catholic church here in Ireland.

    Your self-pity seems to know no limits. So far, you’ve compared the criticism of the RC church to the persecution of the Jews and to oppression by the McCarthyites. Have you no shame?

  35.  

    I find it strange that you would equate anti-semitism [and all the outrages that it encourages] with allegations [false or no] against Roman Catholic clergy.

    I know you feel you have a bone to pick with the media about it’s reporting of clergy sexual abuse – ‘over-representation of these stories’ I think you call it – yet you have to set that against the criminal under-reporting of clergy sexual abuse by bishops in Ireland since the 1940s. Indeed the report on Bishop Magee is about that.

    This ‘under-reporting’ can truthfully also be described a ‘being complicit in the sexual abuse of children’.

  36.  

    Andrew — Enough of this man’s diversionary tactics. keep the focus where it belongs. An independent investigation found that John Magee failed to discharge his duties correctly. He’s a disgrace. If he won’t resign, the State needs to remove him as patron of the Catholic schools in his diocese.

  37.  

    If Bishop McGee let paedophile priests roam around and ignored evidence of wrong doings he should resign or be sacked. The state’s govt should also be responsible for not sorting out the abuse and cover up of abuse by the church, they are responsible for all citizens, and shame on all the lay people (and I have met a few sanctimonious old biddies) who turned a blind eye and in my opinion cared more about the status quo being upset then the abuse of little children. A crime against the old, the sick and especially the young is a crime against humanity. In this state you get a few months in prison for raping children. There is a documentary on Fr. o Grady on You tube for anyone who really wants to see what we’re dealing with. Check out a certain mention of Cardinal Ratzinger in it. Now I must go to mass and pay my Christmas dues to one of the wealthiest organisations on the planet! (i think not).

  38.  

    “This ‘under-reporting’ can truthfully also be described as ‘being complicit in the sexual abuse of children”.–Andrew

    Abuse which (and I wonder if anyone saw the recent Channel 4 documentary) people are still trying to cope with in their 50s. The abuse — and the fall-out from the abuse. Like addiction, alcoholism, etc.

    Didn’t the paedophile scandal in Boston nearly bankrupt that archdiocese? “Over-representation”? I wonder what can of worms, where, has still not been burst open.

    Bock, you’re right of course. John Magee is the point. Patron of any school anywhere he should NOT be.

  39.  

    Kilbarry makes some very good points. However, his view that church policy is no different from state policy is disengenous. Bishops are sworn not to bring scandal on the church on beign ordained.As Kilbarry and a few of the more intelligent postings here well know, the Church and its adherence to Canon Law as opposed to The Law has been the problem all along. As regards the Salem Witch trials, Christian fundamentalist were at work then,as are secular fundamentalists now. Both parties sought/seek to destroy based on mere allegations, no evidence. (in the context that witchcraft was a crime then) Back then the the alter was the platform, today it is the ediorial pages of the Irish Times.

  40.  

    We’ll stay away from comparisons with the Salem witch trials if you don’t mind. This is no witch-hunt. This is about Magee’s abject failure to discharge his duty.

  41.  

    This man magee should now be arrested for child abuse and brought before the irish courts. What is he, himself, hiding ?

  42.  

    What I believe will probably happen is Magee will be given a cushy assignment back in the Vatican, probably right alongside Boston’s own enabler of child abuse, Cardinal Law.

  43.  

    Fr. Sean Barry from Rathcormac, currently resident in Nairobi, Kenya , and a Kiltegan Father ,should be the next Bishop of the Diocese of Cloyne.

  44.  

    Your comments about Barry Andrews are inflammatory and entirely inaccurate. I’m no supporter of Mr Andrews or his party but he has widely been congratulated for his approach to the NBSC report.
    The only agencies in this country with the statutory power to investigate child abuse are the HSE and gardai. While Mr Andrews did have the NBSC report some time ago, he was obliged to ask the HSE to carry out its own report.
    He would also be restricted from acting on a report carried out by the NBSC as it has no statutory role in this matter. It would also be wildly inaccurate to suggest that he has tried to suppress information about the ill-deeds of Bishop Magee. He made the HSE report public – something he is not obliged to do.

  45.  

    Inflammatory, by God! The worst sin in the compliant mainstream-media catechism.

    Inflammatory.

    A great word. What are you afraid might be inflamed? Anger? Outrage? Disgust?

    Listen, Eoin, these guys need a fire lit under their complacent arses. Andrews had a copy of the report, which he claims to have passed to the HSE without reading it. I don’t believe him.

    If the government had any guts, they’d be sacking the bishop from his role as patron of the schools instead of this insipid bleating that Andrews is hiding behind.

  46.  

    By his own admission he did not even read it, just passed it on. Not even by curiousity. He’s the minister for children for fuck sake.

  47.  

    I’d like to ask, why are the HSE, and the NBSC (thats the church body, yeah?) are all involved in this? I suspect there’s a lot of bullshit involved here, to avoid treading on toes. The Gardai should be the only body doing any investigating. Let them consult with doctors and psychologists/social workers as they see fit in the course of their investigations, and otherwise, keep the bloody HSE out of it. In other words the state should treat child abuse criminal allegations like it would treat any other criminal allegations. Enough of guidelines, and bodies and reports. This is the real issue, not whether Magee resigns.

  48.  

    You’re right, and I’ve said this before. The police should be kicking doors down and arresting anyone who tries to obstruct them.

  49.  

    if it was you or me we would be locked up long ago

    http://www.corkmedia.net/?p=1064

  50.  

    How dare they hide behind their robes? They have allowed men destroy and break the souls , the lives the innocence of young girls who could never achieve their goals in life carrying this huge trauma silently whilst their abusers walk free abusing more,
    If you have to attend church refrain from putting money into the tray as it goes by , That priest will soon have no money to attend the Mallow races!!!
    But the worst crime is that they accused the victims of being liars and treatened them with legal action because they knew that the victims could not remember all the details because one of the bastards used trickery and hypnosis to abuse his victims, thus they can not and could not remember times and dates to prove that they were abused,,

  51.  

    isnt it sad that even in the year 2008-9, after years and years of scandals, when this bishop has been proved aiding and abetting child abusers, that he is allowed to continue, unchecked, to be the patron bishop of several schools in cork? and i hear people on rte news saying “hes not so bad” while they still attend his bloody mass. Our government sits on their asses and does nothing about the fact that our education system is being ethically run by an organization that is hazardous to children and is prone to abusing them because of its own twisted view on sexuallity, even tho more and more cases emerge all the time and more and more of the iceberg begins to show and still the population of our country watches on in horror as the freak show continues and there is no end in sight. i love my country, but it has to be said, we are a collective disgrace of weak minded sheep who cant even react to the fact that the youth of our nation has and is being raped right in front of our stupid faces. if this were to happen in britain, france or in any other of our neighboring countries the public would burn this fucker magee and others like him at the stake. and what do we do about it in ireland? we make a report about it and hope it will go away, but it never does.

  52.  

    I am trying to track down the details about a priest from the 50’s. His name was Patrick (Paddy) Walsh. I know a common name! He was from Midleton. I can’t find any diocese in Ireland that will admit he was ordained there. He moved or was “moved” to England, Portsmouth Diocese, St. Therese’s in Totton in the late 50’s. He abused and pursued my dad for years teenage to adult. He later abused my oldest brother, too…two generations (maybe even me but so young — age3/4 — my memories are fragmented. Long story.,

  53.  

    Bock, Sounds like this is a question that so far the Irish are not capable or unwilling to clear up. given the scale and longevity of these Roman activities would it not be possible to request help from neutral countries?. A brainwashed populace is hardly capaple of liberating itself from the baraiwasher. As usual my respect to you Bock for the integrity of your writings, they fill a vital roll in promoting a function called thinking.

  54.  

    Without the gullibility of the average ‘Joe Sixpack’, no scam can succeed.
    Is it not time that the ‘smoke and mirrors’ brigade from the Vatican were sent packing?

  55.  

    i was abused by apriest in the cloyne diocess over 25 yeats ago this priest is still serving in the diocess his superiors are aware of him by an un offial complaint

  56.  

    ctr — If you believe the church authorities are not going to do anything about this abuser, you have other choices available to you.

    Here’s a list of places where you can contact somebody in complete confidence for support and help.

    http://bocktherobber.com/2009/02/support-for-victims-of-sexual-abuse

    If you prefer, you can contact me in absolute confidence and I’ll put you directly in touch with somebody who can help you.

  57.  

    Boch big up to your writing very informative. I don’t live in Ireland any more but I am highly embarrassed about the way irish people hold there priests and bishops in high regard, ie putting them above us mere mortals. I don’t think that there is anything we can learn from priests and bishops anymore, not in this day and age anyway! I think we need to sell all the land owned by the church to feed the poor and needy and let the homeless sleep in the highly ornate churches! Isn’t that what the church preaches. I will never baptise any of my kids to the church, nor will a priest come anywhere near my children. The priest that gave me my first holy cummunion ended up having a kid with my neighbour then abandoned her and the child! It wasn’t a once off as the parish priest ended having an affair with another woman in my parish and is still a priest! This disgusts me to the core as they ended up leaving the parish to cover it up!

  58.  

    Well, people have affairs and relationships break up.

    I wouldn’t put that in the same category as the sexual abuse of children.

  59.  

    The Irish justice system is nothing but a joke.(Banana Republic)
    Ireland has been hiding child abuse for years because of their perverted church.The DPP of Ireland needs to be blown off the face of this earth.They have hidden church abuse.They have hidden Garda abuse.Everyone of the Dpp’s office should be taking to the market square and hanged.Those dirty rotten SCUMBAGS.

  60.  

    I understand peoples anger, frustration and disbelief when they hear what went on within the Church and its members in Ireland and around the world. Jewish people and many others went through hell at the hands of satins soldiers also. Lets not be fooled by a uniform, SS or clergy. Again I will say as I have done so many times, Not a ALL are solders of evil. It would be silly of us to think that they were. Lets see that JUSTICE is done and lets give thanks to them that have done and are doing good. Keep in mind that most of them evil solders of satin are dead and most likely with him and his legends now. That dose not say, Its the end of the rape and torture of little children so be well aware of a wolf and they way they are dressed…!!!

  61.  

    Just like there are Nazi Hunters searching for justice after the atrocities suffered by the Jews in WWII so should these Bishops, priests and anyone that hid or condoned these vile acts to children should be hounded out of hiding and made to face the consequences.
    I hope they all rot in hell and everyday they are on this planet that they never sleep without the faces of those that suffered because of them coming before them.
    Lets not forget that there are good clerical people too but unfortunately they are tainted with the ugliness of a few who were and still are corrupted.
    Who helped Hitler in the WWII?
    – The Catholic Church
    Where did funds come from recently to help with financial cost of the Pope visiting the UK?
    Murdoch.
    What does the Catholic Church and Murdoch have in common?
    All liars, cheats and money grabbing bastards without a care for anyone but themselves.
    Who will win in the end?
    Justice!!!!!

  62.  

    bishop toolbag john magee is lying under a rock in florida with those demonic eyes watching for the press, what about his perverted advances to this juvenile!! his twin brother bishop seamus hegarty who also covered up the rape and torture of children throughout donegal and the north reference ”breaking the silence” is another fine example of the trillion dollar paedo club rotten from the pope down ,is that vile reprobate liar still running loose crocodile brady the serpents head.

  63.  

    I once met a Lady in london from Somalia who out of the blue told me to “Pray for the priests because they are the most vunerable to the devil” I can believe this as I believe in spirit and also in the devil. but …. who are these demons?
    Growing up in Irlenad I have seen the utmost savagery to children without any reason or cause only because they happen to relieve someone’s perverted anger, frustration and sadistic feelings. The answer to any injustice by the nuns, priests or lay teachers who wanted to survive in their jobs was to say “offer it up to God”. Did they?
    By hell they didn’t I don’t suppose they knew what penance was only relief by belting children for looking shy, vunerable or the worst poor!!! Oh by heaven you weren’t any good to them as you couldn’t afford to give them anything so relief on hitting you for their misfortune would have to do.
    NOW it the time for justice and if Ireland cannot support those that have suffered with so much pain and suffering then when can we.
    Magee is suffering and will be hounded more and more and is now running scared “Alleluia” Amen Amen to that!!!

  64.  

    It’s not that relevant how scared Magee is though I understand your anger. It’s also not too relevant how scared Brady, that ridiculous wounded healer in Armagh, happens to be. It seems to me that they should be answering their case before a court of law, and if that court finds them innocent of wrongdoing so be it. But if that court finds them guilty, let them go to jail like any common criminal.

  65.  

    I can see where you are coming from. Brady is the serpent’s head. What is he doing now? How old is he? No doubt lying low.

  66.  

    I think that one of the ways that things might move forward is for the Pope, Cardinals, Bishops etc., to go to confession and be given penance by the people that suffered at their hands. Therefore if they want to go to heaven and reap the benefits they need to be forgiven on earth .
    So a new form of confession box may need to be constructed with a trap door (just in case) when the noose goes around their neck. Otherwise if they are forgiven which so many victims are willing to do they can look at their victim in the eye and tell them how sorry they are.
    In either case justice will be done her or else in the next life.

  67.  

    I can’t see how that has anything to do with Irish law. If they want to seek forgiveness, that’s their own private business. Meanwhile, this country needs to move forward and remove them from any form of civil power.

  68.  

    It is very disturbing to read and hear about Magee i am convinced that he has some dark secret he is hidiging
    about himself.

  69.  

    Just as Bock says it is the Cardinal Brady that is running the establishment in Ireland and no doubt he will try weather the storm just like Murdoch is doing. Remember the church is a very rich establishment and want to protect it’s assets. It knows how to cover up and hid any shame. The people of Ireland put their trust in the church because it is inbred in them to do so. I am from Cobh and saw the control they had there. There were good priests and nuns but unfortunately they were in the background and didn’t have any say. The powerful ones did – the more money you gave to the church when you entered the clergy or nunnery the higher up the ranks you were. As far back as 1994 a book was published by Mary Phil Dreenan “You may talk now” and it was about the life in the orphanage in Cobh. The book is no longer in print !! Why? people did not want to face the fact that their belief in the Church could be questioned. It is hard for people to change their ways due to the brain washing that the church gave to us all down through the years. A dossery of abuses were submitted to the Southern Health Board about 30 years ago but again was pushed under the carpet. The civil law in Ireland has got to change to have the church accountable as any other organisation is. Who would have thought that there would be a coloured president in the White House. Change can happen as long as we keep fighting for it. I think we should throw some suggestions into the pot on how to keep the momendum up on this.
    Already the Church underminded the report as another report on the Roscommon abuse case came out the same day. How convenient was that!. It is an insult to all abuse cases.
    The Church also hides it’s money offshore but with more transparency now things can be revealed. So it can be a long path but we must keep going.

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