PressTV: British Cardinal O’Brien accused of sexually abusing priests

Cardinal Keith OCardinal Keith O’Brien, Britain’s most senior Catholic clergyman

Sun Feb 24, 2013 12:4AM GMT

Britain’s most senior Catholic clergyman, Cardinal Keith O’Brien has been implicated in possible sexual abuse scandals dating back 30 years ago by three priests and a former priest in Scotland, local media reported.

Cardinal O’Brien, who is an outspoken opponent of gay rights, condemning homosexuality as immoral, has been reported to the Vatican by the four, from the diocese of St Andrews and Edinburgh, the daily The Guardian reported.

They complained to nuncio Antonio Mennini, the Vatican’s ambassador to Britain, that they had fallen victim to O’Brien’s inappropriate behaviour at the time, and called for his immediate resignation.

Their claims had been submitted to the nuncio’s office the week before Pope Benedict’s resignation on 11 February, nurturing speculations that Benedict’s shock move may be connected to further scandals to come. Allegations of sexual abuse by members of the church have dogged the papacy of Benedict XVI, who is to step down as pope at the end of this month.

One of the priests claims that the cardinal developed “an inappropriate relationship with him, resulting in a need for long-term psychological counseling”.

“It tends to cover up and protect the system at all costs,” said the complainant. “The church is beautiful, but it has a dark side and that has to do with accountability. If the system is to be improved, maybe it needs to be dismantled a bit.”

The first allegation against the cardinal dates back to 1980. The complainant, who is now married, was then an 18-year-old seminarian at St Andrew’s College, Drygrange, where O’Brien was his “spiritual director”. He claims O’Brien made an inappropriate approach after night prayers.

Out of fear, the seminarian says, he did not report the incident at the time.

“But my personality changed afterwards, so much so that my teachers told me I was becoming depressed. I was ordained but resigned when O’Brien was promoted to bishop. I knew then he would always have power over me. It was assumed I left the priesthood to get married. I did not. I left to preserve my integrity”, he said.

In a second statement, “Priest A” describes being happily settled in a parish when he claims he was visited by O’Brien and inappropriate contact between the two took place.

In a third statement, “Priest B” claims that he was starting his ministry in the 1980s when he was invited to spend a week “getting to know” O’Brien at the archbishop’s residence. He alleges that he found himself dealing with what he describes as unwanted behaviour by the cardinal after a late-night drinking session.

“Priest C” was a young priest the cardinal was counseling over personal problems. Priest C’s statement claims that O’Brien used night prayers as an excuse for inappropriate contact.

They believed the cardinal abused his position. “You have to understand,” explains the ex-priest, “the relationship between a bishop and a priest. At your ordination, you take a vow to be obedient to him.

“He’s more than your boss, more than the CEO of your company. He has immense power over you. He can move you, freeze you out, bring you into the fold … he controls every aspect of your life. You can’t just kick him in the balls.”

Britain’s most senior Roman Catholic has recently said he believes priests should be able to marry if they wish to do so. Cardinal O’Brien said it was clear many priests struggled to cope with celibacy, and should be able to marry and have children.


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10 Responses to PressTV: British Cardinal O’Brien accused of sexually abusing priests

  1. Pingback: GOD needed urgently – The next Pope’s first priority must be to restore confidence in the sexual probity of the Church. Who on earth is going to be able to do that? |

  2. samuelson76 says:

    if there’s a god,… which many now are 100% sure that never existed such one!—
    why he didn’t stop all these suffering,… and struggle of the christian churches ?

    • Jean says:

      Oh, there is fur sure a God! We have been separated from the beautiful force called LOVE that is the quantum field, or so I believe. When we clear out the wounds and trauma and open the way to our hearts, we can then access our ‘heart intelligence’, which is the place from which we will draw our life and breath, our guidance in the New Age. God didn’t let the suffering happen: we did. We have been separated from God, and that is the reason we suffered. We had lessons to learn, and graduation is almost upon us. Planet Earth is a school and a place of free will. We never had to suffer, but we didn’t get it before. Now, many of us do, and we’ve made the choice not to suffer any more. We are tired of being separated! 🙂 🙂 🙂 Love and hugs, ~Jean

  3. Pingback: “The lady doth protest too much, methinks” | Rex and Chris in NZ

  4. Pingback: PressTV: British Cardinal O’Brien accused of sexually abusing priests

  5. Megan Reid says:

    Huggie, it is probably the real them, the evil shining through the disguise that can now clearly be seen by the rest of us. They can’t hide it anymore!

    Love and hugs


  6. debbymanynations says:

    Reblogged this on cedarridge2007.

  7. Why do all of them look like walking dead ? Pale white Dark ring’s around there eye’s Is it just me ?

  8. How old is the Catholic Church teachings ? That is how long all this Dark has been going on. Hint they are the Roman Priest hood the Vatican the Pope and the clergyman.

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