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Archive for the ‘Christian Brothers.’ Category

Vatican intransigence

last night speculated that Pope Benedict’s decision not to accept the resignations of Dublin auxiliary bishops Eamonn Walsh and Ray Field is an indication of a Holy See “Maginot Line” on the question of episcopal resignations in light of the clerical sex abuse scandals.
For months now, Vatican commentators have argued that the delay in accepting resignations originally tendered last Christmas indicated a reluctance to see more heads roll.
This reluctance is at least twofold. First, there is nothing the Holy See would like less than to be seen to be dismissing bishops, solely in response to pressure from the media and public opinion. Secondly, senior Vatican figures are concerned about a possible “domino effect” for the Irish hierarchy. In other words, there may still be many Irish bishops with “mishandling/bureaucratic”, sex abuse skeletons still in the cupboard who would also have to resign.
To a certain extent, say observers, the Vatican has opted to differentiate between sins of omission and sins of commission in relation to the clerical sex abuse scandal.
link to full story

I believe the pope is worried that a precedent would be set by the faithful having a say in who is to be a bishop and even maybe have a say in other areas of the church
This is unpalatable for an organization that has deemed itself un…answerable to anyone on earth
The church is in fact a business and the shareholders (us) are only paid a dividend after we die (so were promised )
What a fantastic scam and the envy of all other business on the planet
This latest development is yet another slap across the face of victims who are told in no uncertain terms where their place is in the pecking order of the Vatican’s concerns, namely at the bottom!

abused over decades


A national memorial will be erected in Ireland for tens of thousands of children who were abused over decades in church-run institutions. So it was claimed to-day .Children’s Minister Barry Andrews said a national day of remembrance for survivors and those who died at the hands of sexual, emotional and physical torture is also being considered.

Mr Andrews insisted the Cabinet has rubber-stamped the 25 million euro (£21.5 million) plan to deal with what he branded a dark passage of Irish history.

Dark is not the word I would use here it is shameful, and what about naming the Minsters who were responsible for allowing these crimes to continue for years

Why are these people not brought before the courts of the land?

They are still enjoying massive pensions when the victims are subject to levies and dole cuts

It’s not enough to say we will do something

Action speaks louder than words, we’ve had enough of false promises!

Liz McManus

Liz McManus
(Wicklow, Labour)

Question 22: To ask the Minister for Education and Science the matters discussed at his meeting on 4 June 2009 with representatives of the religious orders that ran institutions identified in the Ryan report in which children were abused; if the question of additional payments by the orders was discussed; his plans for further meetings with these orders; and if he will make a statement on the matter


Mary Upton
(Dublin South Central, Labour)

Question 24: To ask the Minister for Education and Science if, arising from his public statement on 26 May 2009, he has received a response to his call to the religious congregations to articulate their willingness to make a further substantial voluntary contribution arising from the Ryan report; if a meeting has been arranged with representatives of these congregations; and if he will make a statement on the matter.


Ruairi Quinn
(Dublin South East, Labour)

Question 166: To ask the Minister for Education and Science the matters discussed at his meeting on 4 June 2009 with representatives of the religious orders that ran institutions identified in the Ryan Report in which children were abused; if the question of additional payments by the orders was discussed; if he plans further meetings with the orders; and if he will make a statement on the matter.


Batt O’Keeffe
(Minister, Department of Education and Science; Cork North West, Fianna Fail)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 15, 22, 24 and 166 together.

On Thursday 4th June 2009, the Taoiseach, along with myself and other Cabinet colleagues, met with representatives of the Religious Congregations to begin the process of addressing with them the issues arising from the publication of the Report of the Commission to Inquire into Child Abuse. The Taoiseach conveyed the view of the Government and indeed the wider public that further substantial contributions are required from the Congregations by way of reparation. Furthermore, the contributions need to be capable of being assessed by the public for their significance by reference to the full resources available to the Congregations and in the context of the costs of well over a billion euro being borne by the State. The Taoiseach asked the Congregations to revert with proposals in this regard.

The same group again met with the representatives of the various religious congregations on Wednesday 24th June at which the Religious Congregations reported on the progress they had made in compiling reports on their financial positions. It is expected that reports signed off on by their financial advisors will be submitted by the congregations to the Government by mid-July when a further meeting will be held.

The Taoiseach has stated that the Government would now move to appoint a panel of three independent persons to assess the material submitted by the congregations and report to Government as to the adequacy of these statements as a basis for assessing the resources of the Congregations.

Liz McManus
(Wicklow, Labour)

Question 18: To ask the Minister for Education and Science if he will adopt the Institutional Child Abuse Bill 2009, a Private Members Bill proposed by the Labour Party; and if he will make a statement on the matter

Batt O’Keeffe
(Minister, Department of Education and Science; Cork North West, Fianna Fail)

Following the publication of the Ryan Report the Taoiseach and members of the cabinet met with representatives of the survivors of abuse. Meetings were also held with the relevant religious congregations. At these meetings and through other submission a range of matters were raised including issues such as those raised in the proposed Bill referred to in the question. These matters will be considered fully by the Government with a view to giving a comprehensive response as soon as possible.

Liz McManus
(Wicklow, Labour)

Question 177: To ask the Minister for Education and Science the redress entitlement of a child in a case where they were in an institution providing for mothers and babies, were then fostered with the agreement of the mother and then abused by their foster parent; and if he will make a statement on the matter.

Batt O’Keeffe
(Minister, Department of Education and Science; Cork North West, Fianna Fail)

During the passage of the legislation governing the establishment of the Redress Scheme (Residential Institutions Redress Act, 2002) through both Houses, the issue of including children who were in foster care was discussed and it was decided not to extend the legislation, as children in foster care were not in a residential institution. However, this statutory redress scheme was an additional benefit introduced by the Oireachtas for a particular category of persons and left unaffected the right of anybody to bring legal proceedings. Consequently, a person’s ineligibility to be considered for an award under the terms of the Redress Scheme does not effect their statutory right to pursue any other legal avenue which may be open to them.

Sister Stanislaus Kennedy

Taken from www.alliancesupport.org

Sister Stanislaus Kennedy has apologised unreservedly to survivors of child abuse in Catholic-run institutions.

Sr Stan said the Sisters of Charity were sad, sorry and ashamed that children suffered physical, emotional and sexual abuse while under their care.

She also said that the order must now live up to its financial responsibilities.

 Sr Stan is a prominent campaigner for homeless people.

The order is holding a conference on social justice in Dublin today.

The Ryan report into institutional child abuse the economic downturn will be discussed at the conference.

Sr Miriam Hennessey of the Sisters of Charity told the conference that the findings of the report were ‘overwhelming and disturbing’ for all her nuns.

On behalf of the congregation, she apologised again to all past pupils for what took place in the institutions under the congregation’s care.

President Mary McAleese has described the institutional abuse of children as ‘a milestone of biblical proportions in Irish history’.

Addressing a conference organised, she said the abuse of some of the children in the nuns’ care was a sad chapter in their history, which calls for resilience, determination, humility and focus in the journey of amending and healing that lies ahead.

Comment from Machholz

While this apology is very welcome the fact is that the survivors of this injustice are

Still having to fight to get justice

They should not have to beg for help. A well thought out plan of action, that will meet the current needs of the survivors is desperately needed now!

The various groups that have sprung up all over the country are at best well meaning individuals but they do not have the necessary skills to meet with the challenges that have yet to be faced up to in the future

We are dealing, it must be remembered with well established organisations that have enormous resources, and can protect themselves very well indeed

we need to be equally competent with our dealings with these organisations if we are going to succeed in bringing this very sad chapter of Irish history to a close.

reply from MaryA.White

MaryA.White@oireachtas.ie to me


Dear Thomas,

Many thanks for your email. The debate was a very important debate for Dáil Eireann and it was good to see so many deputies took part in the debate.

You are right that it is essential that the State continues to support and encourage victims of abuse in whatever way it can for the remainder of the victims’ lives, and also that the recommendations of the Ryan Report are implemented in full and as soon as possible. I called on the Government to declare a national day of remembrance for all victims of abuse and I hope this is taken up by it in due course.

Yours sincerely,

Mary White

Mary White T.D.

Green Party Deputy Leader


Leinster House

Kildare Street

Dublin 2

Ryan Report:Eamon Gilmore replies

eamon.gilmore@oireachtas.ie to me

show details 5:07 PM (9 minutes ago) Reply

I would like to thank you for your message regarding the Ryan Report to Inquire into Child Abuse. I have received many messages from many people both at home and abroad telling of their history and giving their opinion on this shameful treatment of Irish children in the care and responsibility of the religious orders.

Your concerns and your opinions have very much helped us in addressing this difficult issue and in drawing up our own proposed Institutional Child Abuse Bill 2009 (a copy of which follows) . The Labour Party Bill attempts to acknowledge the failure of the State and of the religious congregations to protect children from abuse and that crimes were committed against such children in state care. It also attempts to cover a number of the points which have been raised with me such as the age definition of the child with regard to the legislation and the definition of institution, timeframes with regard to applications, privacy and other issues. It also makes related proposals regarding the financial affairs of the religious congregations.

The Labour Party will be pressing to have this legislation considered by the Dail at the earliest possible opportunity. Thank you again for communicating with me and if there is anything further which you feel might be of help don’t hesitate to contact me.

Eamon Gilmore TD

Labour Party Leader

Alliance Victim Support



On my recent attendance of the march to the Dail with fellow victims of Institutional abuse

I came across this victim support group

Check them out   at  www.alliancesupport.org

Tom Hayes is the contact name


Re:The Institutional Child Abuse Bill

Statement by Ruairi Quinn TD

Spokesperson on Education and Science

The Institutional Child Abuse Bill we are launching today is part, but only a part, of an attempt to acknowledge the failure of the State and of religious congregations to protect children from abuse, the pain and suffering they endured and that the Ryan Report vindicates their claims of abusive crimes committed against them by members of religious congregations and others while they were ostensibly in State care or under State supervision.

It goes without saying that the Bill is not of itself a full or satisfactory response. It should also be acknowledged that nothing we can do would undo the damage done to so many children in institutions or adequately compensate them for the physical, sexual and emotional abuse, neglect and wanton cruelty recorded by the Ryan Report in 216 schools and institutions.

However, in the Bill we are trying to deal with a number of specific issues of serious concern to the survivors of abuse that have been raised with Labour Party TDs by individual constituents or publicly by representative groups.

The publication of the Ryan Report shocked Irish society to its core and created a new understanding understand that the abuses carried out in these institutions have left a enduring legacy of pain and suffering. There is now a groundswell of public goodwill towards those who suffered abuse and a desire to see their outstanding grievances addressed.

The proposals in the Bill are set out in easily understandable form in the ‘Principal Features’ document included in your press pack, but I would like to refer to a few of them.

One of the principal complaints we have received is that some people for very legitimate reasons missed out on the deadline for applications to the Redress Board. This issue has particularly been raised with us by groups in Britain who represent people who simply did not know about the existence of the Redress Board or who were simply too ill or traumatised to be able to apply. Others were excluded because they were abused in an institution which was not listed in the Schedule to the Redress Act. Others lost out because, although they were underage under the law as it stood at the time they were in institutions, they would not be considered to be underage in modern law.

Our Bill seeks to correct all these defects. It also deals with concerns of abuse survivors that, in some way, they have a criminal record by virtue of having been committed to one of these Institutions. The Bill proposes that those persons must be treated for all purposes in law as persons who have not committed or been charged with or prosecuted for or convicted of or sentenced for any offence. Their records will, in other words, be wiped clean.

The Bill proposes the deletion of section 28 (6) of the Redress Act which prohibits an applicant to the Board from publishing any information concerning their application to or their award by the Redress Board, if it refers to any other person or institution by name or could reasonably lead to the identification of another person or an institution. This effectively prohibited applicants from recounting the stories of their childhood.

There have also been reports that both the Redress Board and the Child Abuse Commission may be considering the destruction of documents they hold relating to the testimony or witnesses or other papers. To destroy these documents would add insult to injury for those who suffered abuse.

The Bill insists therefore that, when it comes to making a order for the dissolution of the Board or the Commission, the Minister must include in the order his or her proposals for the maintenance of these records and to provide access to them “as a consistent reminder of the damage done to children whose upbringing, care and welfare was consigned to the State”.

This is a serious effort by the Labour Party to address matters of concern that have been raised with us. We don’t claim any monopoly on wisdom in this area and we would be happy to hear suggestions as to how the Bill might be improved or strengthened. Of course as an opposition party we have only very limited Private Members Time. We would be very happy for the government to take over the Bill and to have in enacted in government time. This would be the speediest and most effective way to proceed.

This statement is very welcome but I come back to the question of a way forward now for the victims of these Institutions

See my letter to Deputy Joe Costello



Deputy Joe Costello

Deputy Joe Costello

Speaking on the Adjournment Motion in Dáil Éireann Deputy Joe Costello said that the Department of Education and Science should open a Book of Condolences for the victims of child abuse.

Virtually all the children in the Reformatories, Industrial Schools and Marlborough House were of school going age. The Department of Education had a statutory responsibility to fund, inspect and supervise the welfare and the education of those children while they remained in these institutions up to the age of sixteen.

Quite clearly they were negligent and failed to do so as the needs of the institutions were put before the needs of the children.

Consequently the educational provision and the educational attainment of the children in the words of the Ryan Report were deplorable. Indeed, the Department of Education was for decades a major obstacle to children and their parents obtaining any redress or satisfaction when they made complaints in relation to the treatment experienced by the children in the institutions under the supervision of the Department of Education.

I believe that the Department of Education which has failed the children entrusted to their care should now as a State institution in its own right make a symbolic statement of apology and atonement by opening a Book of Condolences in its main office in Marlborough Street in Dublin 1.

Dear Mr. Costello,

As a survivor of the institutional abuse by the Christian Brothers in St Josephs school in Tralee and as the Last registered inmate to Artian Industrial school I call upon you to support me and all others who wish now to obtain the education that was deprived of us in our youth .

As a 53 year old now I have No hope of obtaining any employment without any formal educational qualifications.

It makes no sense for me to do a Fas Course and then end up back on the dole

Many others want to go back to full time education (as mature students) and I believe that the State should now support this without any means testing


Tommy Broughan T.D.

Dear Thomas,

Thanks again for your email and comments on the Ryan Report and its implications for the Irish State today.

The Labour Party is to publish a Bill today the Institutional Child Abuse Bill, to deal with a number of issues of concern to victims of abuse in religious run institutions. Please be assured that the Labour Party will continue to do everything possible both inside and outside Dail Eireann to address all of the very important issues that you raised in your email.

Please keep in touch,

Very Best Wishes,

Tommy Broughan T.D.

Thank you again

Thomas Clarke

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