Sunday 26 February 2017

Adams now has more baggage than an A380 aircraft

Ivan Yates

Ivan Yates

Gerry Adams
Gerry Adams

As a Wexford TD, I came to know and like Bishop Brendan Comiskey, appointed Bishop of Ferns in April 1984. I was extremely friendly with two priests of the diocese. I enjoyed dinner parties at which Brendan was also a guest. All three men were strong advocates of ecumenism, pioneering new protocols for mixed marriages.

When allegations first emerged of clerical sex abuse, my instinct was one of sympathy and support for the bishop's handling of the matter. Eventually, Comiskey had to resign in 2002 for his stewardship of deviant priests such as Father Sean Fortune.

My judgment was proven mistaken as events unfolded. He tried to handle matters through internal church procedures, rather than as overt criminal activity requiring instant referral to the gardai and judicial processes.

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