October 31, 2005

Priest in Elphin steps aside pending inquiry

IRELAND
The Irish Times

Patsy McGarry, Religious Affairs Correspondent

A parish priest in his 70s stood aside from the ministry in Elphin diocese at the weekend. In a statement read at Masses in churches where the man served, Bishop Christopher Jones said the priest had agreed to step aside pending the outcome of an investigation.

This followed a similar announcement in the Tuam diocese last Thursday.

Bishop Jones did not say what was being investigated in Elphin but emphasised it had not been established whether allegations made were true and the fact that the priest agreed to step aside did not indicate any guilt on his part. It is understood the allegations relate to the mid-1960s, when the priest was in the United States.

In Tuam archdiocese it was disclosed at the weekend there had been abuse allegations there against 27 priests, 19 of whom were priests of the diocese, since 1940. Seven civil actions had been settled, at a cost of 327,000.

Posted by kshaw at October 31, 2005 06:35 AM