"Pat, I am one of those Down and Connor priests you referred to yesterday in your Blog who is suffering from low morale and from a feeling of being leaderless, a priestly sheep without an episcopal shepherd.
While you know my identity I am not brave enough to reveal it publicly because I am afraid of the backlash I would receive not only from the bishop but even more so from priest colleagues who would regard me as a "traitor" for 1. Being in contact with you and 2. For letting down the side.
In fact were I to reveal my identity I feel my life would be made unbearable and the best thing I could do would be to find another diocese, and outside Ireland at that.
I happen to be heterosexual by orientation and have absolutely no problem whatsoever with anyone else's orientation.
I also have managed, by God's grace, to remain celibate since I was ordained a priest.
Like yourself, I have spoken to that young man (now no longer that young) who was sexually assaulted by a priest in West Belfast in 1983 in the manner he described in yesterday's blog.
I did not know until yesterday that you had helped him write a letter to Cahal Daly at the time of his abuse/assault but I personally reported the matter to Cahal Daly in a face to face meeting I had with him not long after the abuse/assault. Daly appeared to be surprised and shocked and told me to leave the matter with him and tell no one else, which I did.
I never knew if Daly did anything about the matter, whether he spoke to the priest in question, or whatever. But I do know that the priest's "career" continued uninterrupted until his final illness and subsequent death.
I also know, from a Lisbreen source, that Bishop Walsh knew of this matter and nothing was ever done about it.
It was not the only time that the priest in question was reported to Daly for irregular activities.
On another occasion, the priest in question by stopped by the RUC in his car trying to attract the attention of a young male escort on a Belfast street.
The RUC questioned the priest and noted all his details and sent him on his way with a severe warning.
The story made its way up to the office of the Chief Constable of the time, Sir John Hermon who was on friendly terms with Cahal Daly.
Hermon rang Daly and told him what had happened to the priest and the circumstances surrounding him being stopped.
On this occasion, Daly did call the priest in for an interview and told him he knew about what had happened and what was going on.
Again, there was no obvious action taken, no suspension, no sending away to a treatment centre etc.
But afterward, the priest used to boast to his other gay clerical friends that Daly had simply asked him to change his car!
On dark winter evenings, behind closed presbytery curtains, these stories, and many others, are still recalled by priests with great humour and hilarious laughter.
Somehow, boring old me has never thought them funny at all.
Things became worse in Paddy Walsh's time with the toleration for years and cover-up of the Jim Donaghy situation amongst others.
And things are even worse again now under NT.
When celebrating Mass I often look down at the faces looking up at me and wonder: "If only they knew what I know".
Years ago most priestly scandals involved women. Then it changed to 50% women and 50% men.
Now it seems 90% men.
Now it seems 90% men.