Archbishop Diarmuid Martin, responding to the pope’s recent pastoral letter to Irish Catholics, has hinted that the official inquiry into clerical abuse should be extended.
Now, that’s all fine and dandy, and Diarmuid Martin is a decent enough fellow, but let me just point out one thing.
This whole scandal is about serious crime: organised sexual abuse of children and a conscious cover-up of that crime, as well as protection of the criminals.
Therefore, regardless of Diarmuid Martin’s undoubted bona fides, why are we waiting for a Catholic bishop to say the investigation should be extended?
Why doesn’t the government do what any responsible group of adults would do and investigate the full extent of the crime, whether the bishops like it or not?
Are they still so craven, in the face of all we now know about the activities of the Catholic church in Ireland that they must wait for the nod of assent from the organisation that committed the crimes?
While Diarmuid Martin is an honourable and decent man, he works for the organisation that actively suppressed investigation of child rapes, and hid the rapists from justice.
What does it matter, in such circumstances, what he or any of his colleagues say? What does it matter what the pope thinks?
These are the people under scrutiny. Let the State grow up and carry out its investigation with or without the say-so of priests whose credibility, as confirmed by their own supreme leader, has been undermined.
Time for Ireland to grow up.