Saturday, 13 August 2016



We have received the following information from the Blog’s Special Correspondent:


“Canon O’Reilly and Deacon Byrne fly back from Barcelona on today’s flight, in time for reauming duties in the Pro Cathedral

Canon O’Reilly hosted up to NINE SEMINARIANS from Valladolid in a friend’s TWO MILLION EURO VILLA in Marbella when Deacon Byrne was a student there. It is alleged there were pool parties and photographs that left little to the imagination

I have no knowledge of Deacon Byrne’s Grindr activity but everything else on your Blog about the gifts, the flights holidays, clothes, is all true. Canon O Reilly was warned by a number of friends about how it could all be construed or misconstrued.

Deacon Byrne is known to love parties, mainly in Barcelona, which I understand are huge gay discos – no doubt there are heterosexual ones too – with lots of drugs and sex. Though maybe he just watched?

The Pro Cathedral also welcomed students from the Legionaries of Christ even after what was revealed about their founder/

Canon O’Reilly lives very lavishly regularly entertaining the Deacon and others to dinners, his favourite being the SADDLE ROOM at the SHELBOURNE HOTEL.


If Archbishop Martin knows all this, and it is hard to see how he does not, it’s hard to understand how action has not been taken”?


Our Dublin Correspondent has been to a presbytery in the Archdiocese of Dublin where FOUR security lights have been installed by the parish priest to monitor the “comings and goings” of one of the curates.

The lights are connected to a 24 hour recording system.

Our correspondent feels that the parish priest has been asked by the Archbishop to watch the curate and has installed this system as one of the ways of monitoring him.

The suggestion is that the curate’s residence was being frequented by a number of young men – possibly Grindr clients?

The curate in question is a recent graduate of GAYNOOTH!

This is reminiscent of the activities of a United States archbishop who has employed a team of private detectives to follow certain priests. These private detectives report directly to the archbishop and supply him with any information / evidence they have been able to glean.

Has it come to this – that the monies that faithful Catholics put in the plate on a Sunday are now being used to fund cameras and private detectives to monitor seminarians and priests who lie about their lifestyles to their bishops?


A Dublin PP said to me last night that a picture of Diarmuid Martin being over protective to gay seminarians and priests seems to be emerging.


Certainly if DM ordains Deacon Byrne in June serious questions arise.

Also - lets see what he does about the Pro Cathedral and Balbriggan.

TOMORROW - Another Dublin gay priest taken by the hand.

Below - some of this Blog's stats this week for those interested

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  1. Bishop Pat, You are doing the church a great service by unearthing the filthy underlay. We all know prophets are hated and reviled.The clerical mindset is still strong in the church and averse to accountability. perceiving themselves as part of a caste above and beyond mere mortals, they hate to be criticised from below. This was never Christ's intention. Clericalism is pharisaism. You are the only priest with the courage to tell it as it is. You are not financially dependent on the system. This gives you a great independence. Would you ever consider using your sociological and journalistic skills to do an all ireland audit on the state of the church here and publish your findings? The maynooth saga is only the tip of the iceberg. We all know that celibacy is not being lived by a sizeable percentage of clergy. This scandal needs to be brought into the light. And the codependent behavior of parishioners and organisations like the ACP must also be challenged. Turning a blind eye can only lead to further problems down the line. Bishops are addicted to the status quo, especially when it comes to celibacy. Like addicts they refuse to listen. Maybe we need someone like you to initiate an intervention. maybe you should write a book and without naming names give an account of the church as it is today especially on the matter of celibacy and the abuse of vulnerable adults. Your knowledge of the underbelly is extensive and should be published. Although this blog is read by thousands, I imagine many are clergy themselves and people who can healthily criticise the church. You need to get the message to a wider audience especially those faithful catholics who either are unaware of what's going on or who are so pathologically loyal that they refuse to acknowledge any misbehaviour in their clergy. Even when they do, they don't hold them to account but rally around them like mother hens. They deserve better and must stop this codependent behaviour which amouts to condoning immoral behaviour. I think writing a book might reach much more people and might be another small step in renewing the church. Refusing to acknowledge the truth will only entrench and empower the dysfunction and dishonesty that is already rampant. The father knows best pathology must be laid to rest once and for all. Most clerics are just average people like the rest of us and when given a sense that they are special and untouchable they will be strongly tempted to abuse that privilege if there are not checks and balances in place.

    1. I don't know what to think or believe anymore.

  2. Thank you.

    Any ideas on how we might organise and support such a project?


    1. Dear Anon 10.53 you and I clearly differ in our perspective on that perfectly normal animal function and appetite otherwise referred to as sex! Opinions on the matter are largely formed by familial upbringing, social customs and "teachings" derived from prescriptive directions, many of the latter being based in a myriad of religious beliefs which are widely divergent worldwide and throughout history.
      At this point in history, many people in Western society are 'locked into' a quasi puritanical belief system concerning sex where it has an almost central relevance and focus as something bordering on an unhealthy but regrettably necessary function which must be kept restrained except in certain well defined and prescribed circumstances. Within the Christian traditions the necessary 'permissions' are as prescribed by the bible and subsequently interpreted by the clergy. The Irish RC church adherents in particular have traditionally fallen into that spectrum of almost rigid conformity to this narrow puritanical outlook on sexual matters.
      So as a humanist, in relation to sexual matters, I have to say I'm bemused by those who believe in and follow the highly selective prescriptions of a collection of ancient writings the origins and relevance of which many historians, biblical scholars et alia continue to disagree about.
      As for those who quote selected biblical passages, [eg. your Matthew 15. 17-19] to support a viewpoint, claiming that the Bible is the central 'rulebook' for behaviour, they conveniently ignore so much of the hogwash elsewhere in the Bible! Just sticking with your own selected Bible chapter, ie Matthew 15, how do you 'explain Matt. 15.4-7 " Children who curse their parents must be killed"?
      So I find cherry picking bible justifications and pirouettes of religious moralists ridiculous, and certainly not a reliable guide for living responsibly and considerately.
      But having been brought up within the narrow confines of traditional RC orthodoxy concerning sex, I can understand how and why so many still retain limited traditional beliefs. Clinging to the apparant probity of handed down beliefs is a balm for many, just as long as their 'human failings' can be erased by relieving trips to the confessional!

    2. MourneManMichael13 August 2016 at 13:13

      Don't know the mechanics of it, but my comment above, (as Anon @ 11:26) was intended as a reply to last post on Bishops Ball and Anon's 01:42 comment quoting Matthew Ch 15 on sexual impropriety.

    3. In no way, MMM, does Matt 15:4-7, justify children who disobey parents being killed.

      The Lord, in those verses, is challenging the legalism, hypocrisy and double standards of the scribes and pharisees.

      In fact, Jesus tempers much of the impossible harshness of the old law - as in his abolition of the lex talionis and replacing it with "Love your enemies".

      Your humanist views, MMM, are all very fine. You are entitled to them. They don't make you more "enlightened" than the rest of us.

      In the context of this scandal and peoples' reaction to it, your views are moot.

      These young men are not humanists. They are preparing for the most sacred of duties in the Catholic Church. They are expected to be exemplary in their Christian lives - not perfect - but DEFINITELY NOT engaging in casual sex with men and/or women.

      These young men who are causing this latest scandal are hedonists, chancers and narcissists. They have the morals of barnyard tomcats! It is UTTERLY UNACCEPTABLE from a Catholic/Christian standpoint.

      These buckos are having a laugh. Their handlers, sugar daddies and enablers are subjecting the Church to grave harm. They are bringing the priesthood of Christ into further opprobrium. They are making a laughing stock of decent and sincere seminarians and priests.

      If bishops are party to this fiasco then the Catholic Church in Ireland is in mortal peril and there is urgent need for radical intervention by the Pope himself.

      Obviously, the apostolic visitation was a farce or else it was thwarted. Obviously, Cardinal Timothy Dolan had the wool pulled over his eyes, or else he colluded with the "a nod is as good as a wink to a blind horse" style of operating, which Irish clericalists and hierarchs are so good at!

  3. The pic above of the security cameras reminds me of something one might see near HMP Buckley Hall not far from where I live. D M being protective of gay clergy...? perhaps in good faith. That being said if said clergy are acting inappropriately it is a whole new game of testicular preportions

    1. I have no connection with HMP Buckley Hall :-)

  4. Sounds a great idea! Is this something VAMA could run with. Would one of the TV stations or independent media producers take it on board? Finance and strategy required

  5. Indeed you Dont Pat. HMP Buckly Hall is a real place near Rochdale. I delivered a media based project and volunteered with the chaplaincy team some years ago

  6. With two of the nine deacons ordained at Maynooth this year being held up to ridicule for their personal antics maybe it's time to be asking individual bishops if they really have no qualms about sending their seminarians there at present. Can they assure us that they make up their own minds about each of their candidates for ordination independently of the seminary formation team? If someone tells lies in order to get ordained surely their ordination cannot be valid?

  7. Can I register the other side of this story - that what is given here by an anonymous 'special correspondent' concerning parties in Barcelona is entirely hearsay. There is no evidence at all presented that Deacon Byrne has in fact done anything wrong. Further, with so many attacks on parochial houses in recent months, it is much more likely that any cameras are entirely for security. The presumption that it is to spy on curates is a bit ridiculous, if I may say.

    I continue to hope that Deacon Byrne will be proven innocent and fit for continued ministry. If so, I trust that others will not plague his first years in ministry with idle and unchristian gossip.

    There is also a marked cooling on your part though Pat towards the bishop of Dublin these past couple of days - are you less confident in him all of a sudden?

  8. What is the big deal about a gay seminarian or gay priest? I am a student at Maynooth University and I am on Grindr but I use it to chat to people and not for one night stands. I think it is pretty sad that people assume Grindr is for sex. I have never seen any of the seminarians on Grindr. Those photos were never up on Grindr. I can swear to that. In fact, I asked my friends and they have never seen them on it. For me, Grindr is an app I can chat to other gay guys. It is most likely that they are seminarians who are using Grindr to chat to other gay men for advice or just to chat to in general. There is no harm in that. In fact, Grindr was nevet intended to be a hook up app. Some of my friends are in the seminary and I have huge respect for them. Last October a priest in the college degraded members of the LGBT community from the pulpit. Within a few hours I got a Facebook message for my seminarian friend who you have attacked who made sure I was ok from that horrific sermon. Surely that is what you call heroic and a true friend. He defended me. And when I brought it up the the rector he commended this seminarian for lookin out for me. The LGBT community has been targeted for years. Homophobic attacks still occur. LGBT children are still scared to come out. It is a serious problem. I know you were treated badly but do you need to attack gay seminarians or priests. What did they ever do to you? NOTHING. We should be proud of who we are. I can see why some seminarians are afraid to come out. Most of my seminarian friends told me that the church's teaching on LGBT issues is so backwards it is utter ignorance on their part. Last year a photo was taken alleging it was me in the photo. In fact it was a brother of a seminarian who went to visit his seminarian brother. The man looks very similar to me. It was a photo of a seminarian and his brother hugging each other alleging it was infact me. Thankfully the seminarian's btother did in fact contact me immediately and it was all cleared pretty fast. I do not know why the photo was not posted but I saw it in an envelope. Yes, I have been targeted before. But attacking gay seminarians is not the answer. Michael, Sean, Fr Chris are my friends and I will defend them. They defended me whenough I was in my worst elements and now I have a duty to defend them. What you are doing is a massive mistake. We should be proud in flying the Pride flag high and not scared of it. Do you see the damage that that journalist was trying to do in the Rio Olympics by finding closeted members of the LGBTQ+ community on Grindr? Do you see how damaging that is? I had to hide my sexuality for over 5/6 years. I came out in my first week in college. My family are religiously conservative and will never accept my sexuality. My mother said to me that she would never attending my wedding if I ever did meet the love of my life. Instead of attacking seminarians who are members of the LGBTQ+ community, if you were a real man yoy would be defending them. My heart goes out to closeted seminarians who are afraid to come out I know the damage that the church can do to ones mental health. I just hope that they are not scared anymore. I wish I can do more to help them. Yes, they are some priests who go to the George or Panti Bar. I met one before and he was great fun to chat to. An extremely warm and funny guy. Did I have issue with it? No. He was with his friends having a great time like us all. We should be enjoying life and not be scared of it. Being gay is something one should be proud of. For years gay people were tortured and degraded. We were treated like second class citizens. And then last May was a turning point. We saw happiness and a big massive colourful rainbow with love. I do hope you see my side. I do hope that what you are doing is dangerous. Mental health is very fragile and defamatory comments damage people.

    1. Anonymous at 13:09 - Indeed, some people maybe use Grindr just to "chat".

      However, do you seriously expect us to believe that Grindr is not synonymous with gay sex? Go and look up the Wikipedia article on Grindr.

      No Catholic seminarian should be anywhere next nor near Grindr. The spirit of Grindr is utterly incompatible with the life of a baptised Catholic - never mind a student for the priesthood.

      If these young men are not on Grindr, if they blameless of the accusations against them, then they are victims of the most appalling slander and every action should be taken to restore their good names publicly and to punish those who perpetrated outrageous falsehoods against them.

      If they are culpable, (and there is a helluva lot of smoke billowing here), if they have been behaving as alleged, then they are not fit to be priests in the Catholic Church.

      Furthermore, Anon at 13:09, no Catholic priest worth his salt should set foot inside the George or Pantibar, etc. It is incompatible with the priesthood.

      The gay lifestyle is not compatible with the life of a Catholic priest. Those priests who frequent these places are giving scandal.

      The Catholic Church requires chastity of all of its members. In the Gospel, Our Lord warned us about so much as looking at another human being with lust. It is NOT homophobic, nor heterophobic for that matter, to teach these truths. It is about respect for the God-given dignity of human beings.

      Catholic priests are duty-bound to teach the Catholic Faith. These young men cannot say one thing and do another. They cannot be walking contradictions. They are NOT ALLOWED to have sex with ANYONE - male or female.

      To ordain a man who is unable to control himself in these matters - who cannot practice sexual continence and who makes no effort to cultivate the virtue of purity - to ordain such a man will have calamitous consequences for the Church.

    2. You’re on Grindr merely to “chat” to gays? COME OFF IT!!! Do you think we’re fools? That’s like me telling my wife that I’m on Tindr to chat to straight women and to embrace my identity as a heterosexual. It would be an outrageous insult to my wife. I am committed to my wife – why would I deliberately seek out women in a sexually charged app environment if not to seek – and maybe indulge in - temptation? In the same way, a seminarian or a priest is meant to be committed to Christ and His Church. The same Christ who said that if we even so much as look at another lustfully we have committed adultery in our heart…

      It’s not clear to me whether you are a seminarian or a lay student in Maynooth. But I will say this - it is impossible for anyone – either you or your homosexual friends in the seminary – to be fully committed to the vocation to the celibate priesthood while simultaneously seeking interaction with homosexuals on a gay app. Surely you can see the level of hypocrisy in this?

      Someone who wants to serve others in ministry, but not embrace celibacy, has many options to to him apart from the Catholic priesthood. I genuinely wish them well in pursuing these alternatives. But there is a lack of integrity on the part of those who enter it while not embracing the rules.

      As for Pat himself, I will say this – THANK YOU for having the decency and courage to address this issue. Respect.

    3. I read Bishop Pat's recent interview with the Belfast Telegraph were he estimates 200 Irish priests are on Grindr, but, of course, it may only be for chatting purposes.

  9. Who is the special correspondent anyway? Is it not a bit strange that they get to be anonymous even though they can say what they like about other people unchecked?

    1. They and their position is known to me.

    2. Have you actually got someone in Spain?

    3. actually if they're telling the truth I don't see why they don't give their own name. also, it doesn't give the chance for the accused to face their accuser!

      i dare the correspondent to be honest enough to put their name on it next time - i bet they won't. (i see the irony that i'm on here anonymously too, but i'm not hurling round any gossip!)

  10. the blog today is hilarious! especially the bit "Deacon Byrne is known to love parties, mainly in Barcelona, which I understand are huge gay discos – no doubt there are heterosexual ones too – with lots of drugs and sex. Though maybe he just watched?"

    who makes this stuff up?? it's all speculation - and probably fantasy - on the part of the writer I reckon. maybe they should keep their own wee fantasies to themselves!


  11. Harassment as defined in the Equality Act 2010 is:
    Unwanted conduct related to a relevant protected characteristic, which has the purpose or effect of violating an individual’s dignity or creating an intimidating, hostile, degrading, humiliating or offensive environment for that individual. The relevant protected characteristics are age, disability, gender reassignment, race, religion or belief, sex and sexual orientation.

    Bullying may be characterised as offensive, intimidating, malicious or insulting behaviour, an abuse or misuse of power through means that undermine, humiliate, denigrate or injure the recipient. Bullying or harassment may be by an individual against an individual or involve groups of people. It may be obvious or it may be insidious. Whatever form it takes, it is unwarranted and unwelcome to the individual.

    1. It does seem to be the case that Bishop Buckley is heading into a potential minefield for himself.
      One mistake - possible big bang.

  12. In defence of Diarmuid Martin, if it is found that Deacon Byrne has done nothing wrong, and he continues with his formation accordingly, then he SHOULD be ordained next June. To hold him back unfairly would be just as bad an injustice as the faculty of Maynooth are being accused.

  13. Down and Connor are loving all of this.

    They are as clean as a whistle.

    No mention of any of their students/priests and no mention of Rasharkin et al.

    1. I have something tomorrow for D&C readers!

  14. Pat in all honesty I think this story has run its course and I am humbly asking you to leave it be. Some of the comments you have made recently wouldn't look out of place on a homophobic gay hating blog of a born again christian in the US. I think you have lost all sense of proportion and are veering towards ranting. Whatever needs to be in the public domain about Maynooth is now in the public domain and it is up to others to decide the best way forward. If priests and clerics are gay and acting out that is between them and their respective bishops. You have no right to expose them, especially if you are doing so on hearsay. Think how you have felt had you been forcibly outed when you were living active gay life before you outed yourself? I think the time has come to move on from this story. I have always been an ardent supporter of you and your blog, but recently I fear you are going too farad showing signs of mental obsession. Leave it be for goodness sake. Please. A friend.

    1. You will have to trust me on this.

      My work is NOT done.

    2. Anonymous 19.59

      You say that if there are active gay priests the issue is between them and their bishops. Wrong! What a clericalist answer! The issue is between them and God. But it also involves the laity! We are the ones whose contributions fund their salaries. We are the ones who have to deal with the hypocrisy and the corruption of the Church; the insipid homilies and lifeless liturgies; the diluted catechesis and compromise with the spirit of the world.

      What are you trying to cover-up, and why???

    3. ... I've started so I'll finish.

    4. Partly. But I m also keeping going for the "victims".

    5. I agree completely with you anon 19:59. Pat is just exposing deceit, hypocrisy and, probably, embezzlement on a large scale. Priests are ordained to serve the laity - not their own lusts and fetishes (such as dressing up in clerical garb, or whatever). They should also be prepared to suffer the consequences of posting their pictures on Grindr. We don't need whinging enablers preaching a false mercy and compassion whilst these guys run riot making a mockery of God and their vows to Him AND spending our hard-earned money on their lovers. These boyos on Grindr should be turfed out of the priesthood and made to work for a living instead of sponging of the laity.

    6. The laity will never learn! The poor creatures in Armagh are paying for Rory to essentially go on holiday to America in the vain hope that whilst there the clinic will 'pray the gay away'

      Puck no doubt is living the life down South on full pay, while georgeous parades around with mister theology student enjoying expensive wines and dinners.

      In protest I refuse from here on to pay any stipend or contribution to my parish/Diocese until ALL and I mean ALL accounts are published in FULL.

  15. Pat I agree with 19-59. Leave this and move on. Over the past few days you give the impression of treading water and biding your time. Leave it for now and when something else of significance comes up again then go for it. I know for fact that some of my friends who are followers are being turned off.
    Back to D&C again. There's a few updates required there. In fact I'm surprised that nobody has suggested that Mgr Connolly in Maynooth couldn't be replaced by Dr Hugh Kennedy. Lol
    Sp Pat take a valuable tip from another friend. Return to Maynooth when you have something big again. Leave it for now. Cheers.

    1. I know what I m doing. I know where I m headed.

      Please trust me.

    2. MourneManMichael13 August 2016 at 21:32

      Many of us follow and trust your good intentions Pat when it's normally based on 'hard'/reliable info, but there's more than a grain of truth and a bushel of good advice above. The comment referring to 'treading water' is very apt, especially for a post such as the one about the 'Bishop's Ball'.

  16. I agree, it's time to look at something else!!


    1. Heads must roll first.

  17. With all due respect to everyone else, given that the Bishops will be meeting this month, I think that the topic should continue to be put under scrutiny.
    At least until after they have their meeting - because this blog has been influential in drawing attention to the seminarians/whistleblowers who are being wronged for doing the right thing. I say we continue to keep this highlighted - there's plenty of time for silence on this afterwards (as there certainly has been too much silence before this)
    Just my 2 cents

  18. My heart is broken by all of thisl My entire life I have tried (and succeeded) to live chastely AND celibately. I am tempted to throw in the towel, because Roman Catholicism repulses me.

    1. Don t panic. Get in touch. Let me support you. Pat.

  19. Magna Carta
    The word scandal, I have been told, derives from the Greek SCANDALOS - has tow meanings
    A stumbling block
    A stepping stone.
    Try - like most normal Catholics do - to step over and stay clear of corruption and evil!!!

    1. I can empathise with Magna Carta's choice of words, because when I left Catholicism it felt exactly like that. I think a lot of people leave because they get so tired of living in a cess pit.