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IE — Documents in the New — Report by Commission of Investigation into Catholic Diocese of Cloyne

July 14, 2011 Comments off

Report by Commission of Investigation into Catholic Diocese of Cloyne (PDFs)
Source: The Department of Justice and Equality (IE)
From press release:

Perhaps the most shocking aspect of this report is that it is not dealing with terrible wrongs committed in the distant past; instead it examines how the Diocese of Cloyne dealt with complaints made from 1996, the year in which the Catholic Church put in place detailed procedures for dealing with child sexual abuse. It was because of concerns that these guidelines were not being properly implemented that the Commission was asked to extend its work beyond the Dublin Archdiocese.

The report finds that, contrary to repeated assertions on its part, the Diocese of Cloyne did not implement the procedures set out in the Church protocols for dealing with allegations of child sexual abuse; the greatest failure by the diocese was its failure to report all complaints to the Gardaí; no complaint (except for one complaint in 1996) was reported to the health authorities until 2008; the response of the diocese to complaints and allegations of clerical sexual abuse was inadequate and inappropriate.

The report also contains strong criticisms of some of those in positions of authority in the Church in the diocese.

All of these findings are, of course, deeply disturbing. But they are compounded by the fact that the Commission find that the Vatican’s response to the Church guidelines was entirely unhelpful, giving comfort and support to those who dissented from the guidelines. We want to say as clearly as we can that this approach, when the State was entitled to rely on assurances about the operation of the guidelines, was wholly unacceptable.

We note that the report does point out that improvements have taken place in Cloyne since 2008.

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