Cloyne Report Reveals Failure in Ireland

An investigation of the Diocese of Cloyne, in Ireland, by a government judicial panel suggests a continuing failure of the Irish church to implement effectively its own child protection procedures. Much of the blame in the Cloyne Report was placed on Bishop John Magee who “took little or no active interest in the management of clerical child sex abuse until 2008.” Investigators say Bishop Magee lied to the government about turning over cases to civil authorities and was even involved himself in inappropriate behavior with a young seminarian.

According to the report, Vatican officials (who declined to cooperate with the investigation) also had some responsibility for the breakdown in Cloyne. The Roman Curia refused to approve the Irish church’s 1996 guidelines for dealing with sexual abuse by members of the clergy. This position, according to the report, “effectively gave individual Irish bishops the freedom to ignore the procedures” they had agreed to.

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