FOR A LONG TIME NOW various blog readers have been urging us to look at the scandals in Catholic dioceses in the West of Ireland.
People appear to be speaking about the dioceses of Tuam, Galway, Kilalla, Achonry, Elphin, Clonfert and perhaps Kilaloo and Raphoe.
I have been telling people that they need to be specific about the people involved and the situations involved.
We have had one high profile happening in the past week with the Tuam deacon Aidan Gallagher cancelling his ordination five days before it was due to take place.
|Aidan Gallagher and Archbishop Neary of Tuam|
That matter now seems to be the subject of a Gardai investigation and Tuam has taken all mention and photographs of Aidan Gallagher off their website.
Someone did tell the blog that Aidan Gallagher was accepted for the priesthood by Bishop Fintan Monahan of Killaloe who was a Tuam priest at the time and the Tuam vocations director.
Of course as we do not yet know the issue causing the Gallagher ordination cancellation we cannot say that Fintan Monahan could have picked up on any issue.
Also of course Maynooth Seminary would have sent Aidan Gallagher for psychological assessment.
We are told that since 2008 Maynooth has been sending their seminarians to the St Luke's Centre in Manchester for assessment.
It's website says:
St. Luke’s Centre participates in the healing ministry of Christ by promoting the health and well being of Roman Catholic clergy, women and men religious, and candidates for ministry in England, Scotland, Ireland and Wales.
We work closely with dioceses and religious congregations to provide individual assessment and evaluation, candidate assessments, outpatient therapy, tailored education and wellness programmes, and conduct research.
We use our professional training and working relationships with national bodies to offer off-site diocesan/religious community-based consultation and specialized risk assessments.
The Centre is an independent facility formed at the request of the Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales and operating in close association with Saint Luke Institute. The Centre is a registered charity, with its own board of Trustees.
We conduct our ministry in accordance with best clinical practice and in harmony with the teachings of the Gospel and the Roman Catholic Church. Our staff operates in compliance with national and international standards for specialized risk assessment and other psychological assessments.
|Fr Gerard Fieldhouse - Byrne|
Rev Dr. Gerard Fieldhouse-Byrne D.Min., MSW is a priest of Salford diocese. He has a Masters in Spirituality from the Angelicum University in Rome, a Masters in Clinical Social Work and a Doctorate in Counselling from Boston University, USA. After completing his doctorate in Boston he spent two years on the staff at the Saint Luke Institute in Maryland. He has worked in clergy support, counselling and the promotion of clergy wellbeing since 2000. He was appointed executive director of St Luke’s Centre Manchester in 2005.
Did Gorgeous, King Puck and Deacon Gallagher go to St Luke's for assessment?
It would be interesting to see copies of their written reports. Of course we never will. They are firmly locked away in the bishop's palaces in Dublin, Tuam and Kerry.
KILLALOE DIOCESE FINANCES:
A priest of Killaoe diocese contacted us yesterday to say that Fintan Monahan has launched an full investigation into the finances of all the parishes of the diocese after receiving some reports of irregularities.
Apparently this new financial project is not pleasing all the priests of Killaloe?
WESTERN DIOCESES - SEXUAL ISSUES:
Reports have come in about a priest of one western diocese with a steady girlfriend and the speculation by priests and people that the priest might be the father of one of her children. I am, of course, without evidence, not publishing names.
Another report of a priest who is held in high esteem and even mentioned for a mitre being actively gay. Again not appropriate to publish names.
Another report from a former seminarian from the West who went to his bishop and told him he was gay.
The bishop answered:
"Keep your head down and don't cause any problems. If I don't get negative reports I'll forget what you told me".
So it looks as if all these issues arise in every diocese and are not just confined to Dublin, Tuam and Kerry.
KEEP THE REPORTS COMING.
I AM COMPILING A REGISTER OF REPORTS.
The new Bishop of Raphoe was appointed by Pope Francis and replaces Bishop Philip Boyce OCD.
“On the feast of Saint Columba I want to offer my sincere and prayerful congratulations to Father Alan McGuckian SJ whom Pope Francis has appointed as the new Bishop of Raphoe.
"Father McGuckian’s background in education and communications, as well as his recent immersion in pastoral planning and development with the Diocese of Down and Connor, indicate just some of the rich experiences and gifts that he will bring to his new ministry. I pray that Saint Columba and Saint Eunan will intercede for him as he takes up his new duties as bishop.
“I also want to pay warm tribute to Bishop Boyce. Bishop Philip has been a hugely supportive and dedicated member of the Episcopal Conference since his ordination as Bishop of Raphoe in October 1995. His fidelity to his roles at the Bishops’ Conference, in particular to his contributions at the Council for Clergy and the Council for Liturgy, reflected depth of thought, wisdom and selflessness.
On a personal level I have found Bishop Philip to be a prayerful and caring companion, especially when I was taking up my own episcopal responsibilities. I have always sensed his Carmelite charisms of service, contemplation and fraternity. For this generosity I wish to thank him and wish him every blessing in his new role as Bishop Emeritus.”