Monday 18 December 2017

Religious must not hide behind trusts or old deal

IN the battle between the Minister for Education and the religious orders over compensation for victims of abuse, all the morality is on the side of Ruairi Quinn. But the law may be on the side of the religious.

Clearly, this is not the way it should be. Among the many extraordinary errors made by the Roman Catholic authorities in this woeful business, perhaps the most extraordinary is the failure to recognise that a church which appears to give no thought to its moral position is conniving at its own destruction.

One has to recognise that the Irish State was guilty of gross negligence in the years of widespread abuse, and that money paid to the victims by the orders is money which will not be available for other good purposes today. The recommendation in the Ryan Report, after it had catalogued the horrific, inexcusable scale of abuse, that State and church should share the cost of damages equally, seems both fair and reasonable.

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