Sunday 22 April 2018

Survivors fear under-fire Brady will stay

Ciaran Byrne

ABUSE survivors believe Cardinal Sean Brady is positioning himself to hang on to his job, despite widespread calls for him to quit as head of the Catholic Church in Ireland.

Victim Marie Collins spoke out yesterday as Archbishop of Dublin Diarmuid Martin, in a Holy Thursday homily, increased pressure on under-fire bishops to resign by repeating his call for church leaders to take responsibility.

Dr Brady has said he would spend Easter Week considering his position over his role in silencing abuse victims in 1975 -- but his stance appears to be hardening in favour of staying put. And several abuse survivors, including Ms Collins, believe the prospect of Dr Brady offering his resignation is remote. Ms Collins, who asked Dr Brady to step aside with "honour" when she met him in Armagh on Wednesday, told the Irish Independent that the cardinal was not the same man who was full of regret and apologies in his St Patrick's Day homily.


She said: "He did not express any feelings of regret about what happened in 1975, that anything had been done in error. I do not get the impression he is thinking of stepping down."

In a powerful homily at the Pro-Cathedral in Dublin, Dr Martin said he did not believe in "fast-track healing", adding pointedly, "the sins of the past still had to be addressed before people could move on. There is no short cut in addressing the past."

Ms Collins said Dr Martin's comments underlined the need for auxiliary Dublin bishops Eamonn Walsh and Raymond Field to resign along with Bishop of Galway Martin Drennan, who is a former auxiliary bishop of Dublin. Dr Martin told the Pro-Cathedral congregation: "There can be no overlooking the past. The credibility of the church in this diocese of Dublin will only be regained when we honestly recognise the failures of the past, whatever our share of responsibility for them. There can be no rewriting history.

"We see how damaging failure of integrity and authenticity are to the Body of Christ. Shameful abuse took place within the Church of Christ. The response was hopelessly inadequate."

Dr Martin said young people were the key to the process of renewal and moving forward.

"Many say to me -- especially young people -- that they have lost confidence in and even reject what they call 'the church as an institution' but that they still hold and cherish the message of Jesus.

"But where do they turn to find that message? They will not find it in popular culture. They will not keep it, hoping that their knowledge of Jesus acquired as a child or in school will keep their faith alive as they face the challenges of adult life."

Irish Independent

Today's news headlines, directly to your inbox every morning.

Editor's Choice

Also in Irish News