Unholy row as Martin removes priests from Maynooth seminary
Priests to be sent to Rome as college is investigated
The country's largest Catholic diocese has confirmed it will not be sending any of its trainee priests to study at the National Seminary in Maynooth this autumn.
Instead, Archbishop Diarmuid Martin of Dublin has opted to send his student priests to the Irish College in Rome.
His decision is a new setback to the seminary amid growing unease over accusations of inappropriate behaviour among some student priests in Maynooth - after it was revealed that some seminarians have, until recently, been using the gay dating app Grindr.
Archbishop Martin is a trustee of Maynooth, along with the three other Catholic archbishops and a number of bishops.
"I have my own reasons for doing this," Archbishop Martin said.
But he added that he had made the decision "some months ago".
The seminarians from the Dublin diocese are all at various stages in their training.
Dr Martin informed the other bishops of his intention at the summer general meeting of the Irish hierarchy in June.
In the wake of the Grindr scandal, the National Seminary in Maynooth has insisted that "robust procedures" are in place to handle any such complaints against seminarians.