Tuesday 6 December 2016

'Allegations of homosexuality and misconduct': Archbishop of Dublin explains why he is not sending trainee priests to Maynooth

Cian Murray

Published 02/08/2016 | 15:21

Archbishop Diarmuid Martin complains of allegations of 'homosexuality and misconduct'
Archbishop Diarmuid Martin complains of allegations of 'homosexuality and misconduct'

The Archbishop of Dublin will no longer send trainee priests to the National Seminary in Maynooth because of anonymous allegations of "homosexuality and misconduct."

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Speaking on RTÉ One's News at One, the Archbishop Dr Diarmuid Martin said that he is "somewhat unhappy about an atmosphere which was growing in Maynooth."

These comments follow the Archbishop's decision to transfer three seminary students to the Irish Pontifical College in Rome next autumn, rather than keeping them in St Patrick's College in Maynooth.

He added that "you'd learn about it through anonymous accusations made through anonymous letters and blogs, accusing people of misconduct or accusing the faculty of Maynooth of not treating allegations correctly."

When asked for details regarding these allegations, the Archbishop explained that gay dating app Grindr plays a central role. 

He said: "One (of the allegations) is that there is a homosexual, a gay, culture and that students have been using an app called Grindr which is a gay dating app which would be inappropriate for seminarians. 

"Not just because they're training to be celibate priests, but (because) an app like that would be something that would be fostering promiscuous sexuality."

The Archbishop added that he would continue to send Dublin seminarians to the Irish College in Rome and suggested that Maynooth put a system in place to listen to such complaints. 

He said: "I felt that a quarrelsome attitude of that kind was not the healthiest place to be so I sent them to the Irish College.  A culture of anonymous letters is poisonous and until that's cleared up I'd be happier sending my students elsewhere.

"I offered to provide a totally independent person, who is an expert with dealing with people who come forward like this and that (people with complaints) could go to and provide the evidence they had.

"The answer was simply more anonymous letters. That's not a healthy culture. We have to find a way where people will come forward with solid hard evidence which can be used to follow up allegations."

Maynooth currently has approximately 60 seminarians in residence and has been educating men for the catholic priesthood since 1795.

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