Friday, November 27, 2009

Bishop: 'Cover-up culture has gone'

Bishop: 'Cover-up culture has gone'

Friday November 27 2009

The Catholic Church's 'don't ask, don't tell' cover-up culture exposed in a damning clerical abuse report is dead and gone, a senior cleric said.

Bishop Eamonn Walsh, deputy head of the Dublin Archdiocese, insisted clergy named and shamed in the devastating probe should not stay in their job.

A three-year inquiry found paedophile priests got away with decades of horrific child sex abuse because the Catholic hierarchy, obsessed with secrecy, was granted police immunity.

But Bishop Walsh said the culture of cover-up exposed by the Commission of Investigation into the Dublin Archdiocese no longer existed.

"That's gone and dead and gone and thank God it's dead and gone," the Bishop said.

"And if it isn't, wherever it isn't dead and gone that person should be."

The senior cleric, former priest secretary to disgraced Bishops Kevin McNamara and now Cardinal Desmond Connell, said priests should not be allowed stay in their positions if they were not able to safeguard children.

"I would be the first to say that anyone, including myself, if I were to be found not up to the job of protecting children, then that person should go," he told RTE radio.

"If people feel that their Bishop, their senior person, or whoever it is is not able to protect children properly then that person ought not to be in the job."

The devastating report by the Commission of Investigation into the Dublin Archdiocese, three years in the making, found four archbishops, obsessed with secrecy and avoiding scandal, protected abusers and reputations at all costs and in some cases with the blessing of senior law enforcers.

Press Association

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