FATHER CHRIST DERWIN is leaving the priesthood according to my sources in the Archdiocese of Dublin and Maynooth Seminary.
Fr Derwin has been something of a controversial figure in the context of Maynooth and in the context of various "happenings" in the two parishes in which he has served - Balbriggan and Tallaght.
In Balbriggan the parish priest and the archbishop set up CCTVto watch the comings and goings at the presbytery.
In Tallaght there was a mysterious burglary of the presbytery.
Fr Derwin has also been friends with Deacon Jack "Gorgeous" Byrne and Deacon "King Puck" Jones.
Below we see a picture showing Fr Derwin with Gorgeous and Diarmuid "Coddle" Martin in the sacristy of the controversial Bray parish where Gorgeous served.
We have also learned from Listowel parishioners that Fr Derwin was a regular visitor to Listowel to visit King Puck who is currently the Listowel deacon.
A well placed Dublin priest who drew my attention to Fr Derwin's rumoured departure from the priesthood told me today:
"I think in the departure of Chris Derwin from the Dublin Presbyterate we are seeing the beginnings of the cracks in a very unfortunate situation that Archbishop Martin has been presiding over for a number of years now.
This situation involves the increasing alienation of the majority of Dublin's priests from their archbishop and the increasing policies of the protection of a small number of diocesan priests and seminarians who have, for whatever reason, enjoyed the protection of an archbishop who seems to have lost the plot.
This situation could easily bring the archbishop into disrepute and could very easily cloud his legacy as well as much the future very difficult for his successor.
Many priests believe that Archbishop Martin is creating the archdiocese's future scandals by his strange and unexplained policies. Just as we now look back on the reign of McQuaid, Ryan etc with horror and sadness we could easily find ourselves embarrassed by the legacy of the Martin era".
I believe that this very senior Dublin priest is right.
We are witnessing before our eyes new "dark days" for the Irish Catholic Church.
When these things come to pass we will not be saying: "I TOLD YOU SO".
We will however be feeling sad that reason and right did not prevail and that the Body of Christ was wounded so unnecessarily :-(