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Six dioceses still waiting for bishop appointment

THE Vatican has given no indication of when it will appoint bishops to six dioceses that are without a leading cleric or whose serving bishop has reached retirement age.

Nineteen months on and there is no sign of when successors will be appointed for two prominent bishops who resigned amid horrific revelations in a child abuse report -- Dr Donal Murray in Limerick and Jim Moriarty in Kildare and Leighlin.

In December 2009, both clergymen gave their resignations after coming under intense pressure following the publication of the shocking Murphy report.

Bishop Murray resigned after the report into the Dublin Diocese criticised his role in a number of cases.

The Papal Nuncio has not signaled when bishops will be appointed to either diocese.

Cloyne Diocese remains vacant following Bishop John Magee's resignation after the National Board on Safeguarding Children in the Catholic Church found that Cloyne's mishandling of clerical child abuse complaints had effectively left youngsters in danger.

Meanwhile, three bishops are waiting for their resignations to be accepted by Pope Benedict, having reaching the obligatory retirement age of 75.

Colm O'Reilly in Ardagh and Clonmacnoise, Co Longford, offered his resignation last year, while Christopher Jones in Elphin, Co Roscommon, and Bill Murphy in Kerry both turned 75 this year.

Irish Independent