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Monday 25 September 2017

Why the fuss now, asks Padraig Flynn's wife on Mass row

Padraig Flynn
Padraig Flynn
Padraig 'Pee' Flynn with wife Dorothy. RONAN LANG

THE wife of former politician Padraig 'Pee' Flynn has defended him after he gave a reading to Mass-goers, saying: "Sure he's been reading at Mass there for the last 40 years."

Dorothy Flynn was responding to reports that parishioners in Castlebar, Co Mayo, complained about her husband speaking from the pulpit.

Asked if she thought criticism of her husband was unfair, Mrs Flynn replied: "I think God knows best."

She said that Mr Flynn, a former Fianna Fail minister and European Commissioner, wasn't available when the Irish Independent phoned and he did not return our call last night.

The controversial former politician gave two readings during Mass in the Church of the Holy Rosary on October 27, and one of the readings stated: "I have fought the good fight."

Last year, the Mahon Tribunal found that Mr Flynn accepted a corrupt payment of IR£50,000 from developer Tom Gilmartin. The tribunal found he used the money to buy a farm for his wife, although it was intended for Fianna Fail coffers. He was never reprimanded in court.

Reports yesterday said parishioners felt "disgust" after Mr Flynn gave the readings. The Tuam archdiocese is investigating complaints.

An archdiocese spokesman said they would be "very reluctant to comment publicly".

But Mayo Fine Gael TD Michelle Mulherin backed Mr Flynn, saying: "I think it's really a matter for himself and his faith. I personally don't have a problem with it.

"This is the church we're talking about. It's a place where you find mercy, not condemnation."

Cormac McQuinn

Irish Independent

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