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Priest steps aside as "child safeguarding" complaint is investigated

A statement from the Bishop of Kilmore says that the complaint relates to events that happened “a considerable time ago”.

Priest on grey background
Priest on grey background
Image: Africa Studio via Shutterstock

A PARISH PRIEST has voluntarily stepped down from his duties after a complaint was made against him.

A statement from the Bishop of Kilmore Leo O’Reilly, which was read in churches across the diocese over the weekend, said that the bishop had received a complaint in relation to a “child safeguarding matter”.

O’Reilly said that the alleged incident happened “a considerable time ago”.

“I deeply regret to say that I have received a complaint against a priest of the diocese in pastoral ministry which raises concerns in relation to child safeguarding matters.

In accordance with diocesan child safeguarding procedures, the priest has voluntarily agreed to take administrative leave whilst an investigation takes place concerning the complaint.

O’Reilly said that gardaí have been made aware of the complaint, but stressed that the priest in entitled to the presumption of innocence.

An acting parish priest has been named in the church.

O’Reilly said that the diocese is committed to child safety.

“I want to assure everybody again, as I have done before, that the Diocese of Kilmore is fully committed to safeguarding children and I invite anybody in the diocese who may have concerns in this regard to bring them to the attention of the Child Safeguarding Designated Person of the diocese, Suzie Duffy at 049 437 5004 (Ext 105).

I ask you to join me in prayer for God’s help for all concerned at this difficult time.

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