by Medb Ruane

Saturday February 20 2010

The tangled web of Church-State relations was rarely so knotted as this week, when two events conspired to tease it further. Pope Benedict met Irish Bishops in Rome to discuss the child abuse scandals, especially after the Murphy report.

In Dublin, however, the Pope’s diplomatic representative Giuseppe Leanza decided he was unable to attend the Oireachtas Committee on Foreign Affairs to discuss the same sad story. It was extremely unfortunate.

From Rome, people heard that the bishops hadn’t asked Benedict or his Curia why the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (CDF) and the Papal Nuncio hadn’t co-operated with the Murphy Commission. Instead, Benedict seemed to present the difficulties as a faith-based issue with particular ramifications for the Irish hierarchy.

He said that a weakening of faith “has been a significant contributing factor in the phenomenon of the sexual abuse of minors” and connected the ‘crisis’ to “the lack of respect for the human person” in society. It sounded like a campaign slogan aimed at the wider world, rather than at abusive priests or secretive Church habits.

A lack of respect for the human person struck the Vatican too because no one had invited abuse survivors to Rome. This meant neither Benedict nor his Curia heard any first-hand testimony about what happened in Dublin, as well as in Ferns, Cloyne and elsewhere.

One of the most touching elements of the abuse scandals is how deeply survivors want Benedict to meet and hear them, almost as though there’s a hope that his better judgment will win out after he realises what was done to them. For some, there’s still a deep faith that good will triumph over evil in the Catholic Church.

But the survivors are ignored, reduced to statistics and denied a voice where it matters. Their suffering is voiced, if at all, by representatives of the hierarchies who frustrated them for so long.

The ethical basis for this cutting-off of survivors must be dubious. Indeed, Benedict’s comments about a weakening of faith contributing to child abuse are exactly opposite to the Irish situation, where faith was so strong that people were encouraged to believe their Pope and bishops would act in their best interests. They trusted them.

Not inviting abuse survivors to speak also meant ignoring the human consequences within Ireland’s Catholic community. A door was closed to any words about their feelings of betrayal, as well as the crimes and cover-ups which made it worse.

There was no apology to survivors, nor any apology to the Irish State for years of obfuscation, delay and denial. Instead, there were the beginnings of an attempt to situate the scandal in terms of theological politics, which hark back to old 1960s and 70s rows that were basically power struggles for ideological control of the Catholic Church.

Practically speaking, you’d have to wonder what kind of pastoral letter Benedict could write without survivors’ evidence, given that he’s also closed off official diplomatic routes by failing to instruct the CDF and the Nuncio to work with the Murphy commission and the State, where survivors were given some space to speak. How can he speak to people without listening first?

It’s striking, hearing men such as Andrew Madden and Colm O’Gorman, how deeply abandoned survivors feel by the Church into which they were baptised. Yet these men are also citizens of a Republic which has a duty of care towards them. Brian Cowen and Micheal Martin are more relevant here than Benedict.

The mountain range of theologies, politics, secret documents and papers buries principles underneath, especially those involving the Irish State. The web is so enmeshed it hides enormous questions about the Vatican’s relationship to the State, and the State’s procrastination in seeking acknowledgement and justice from the Vatican on behalf of injured citizens.

If such abuse of Irish citizens had happened in an agency managed by another state — Alliance Francaise, the Goethe-Institut, a tourist board — the lines would be easier to see. If, say, the French or German ambassadors then refused to co-operate with an official investigation, Irish politicians would have to act.

Yet, with the exception of a few, notably Fine Gael’s Alan Shatter, Irish politicians seem content to live with the confusion and to have the public eye kept on how the bishops interact with the Vatican rather than what the State is doing to win the information and redress it needs.

Cowen and Martin should ask why the Vatican and CDF didn’t/won’t co-operate with Irish authorities, and what practical reasons can possibly justify the Catholic Church’s continued role in public affairs, given its lack of respect for the way the State has to conduct itself. Giuseppe Leanza’s refusal to attend the Dail Committee is an insult, in the circumstances.

It’s especially pernicious because local tradition gives the Nuncio the highest status of all diplomats to Ireland, even though only 117 men are eligible to vote in his state.

The message protocol-wise is that if the unofficial leader of the diplomatic corps can ignore the State’s commissions and committees, why should other ambassadors be more respectful? At least, it’s a bad example. At worst, it ridicules the democratic basis of the Irish State.

Irish Independent


45 Responses to “There was no apology to the survivors, nor to the Irish State for years of delay and denial”

  1. Hanora Brennan says:

    That female group leader was a credit to her college and the nuns as time will prove what a fraudster she’s truly been along with the other Groupies!

  2. Paddy says:

    I’m glad to be able to allow people the chance to air their views on this site. As for me being an Angel…………….there are may that would say you’ve got that all wrong. Thanks for the nice comment. I do appreciate it. Paddy.

  3. Bernadette O' says:

    One so called (female) Leader of a group in Dublin might not or might have got a job working in a house for the religious, or in a hospital as a skivvy but had the privilege from the nuns of being sent out to the outside school the rest of us would have given our legs to have had that chance I am sure we would all giving the choice of dying or staying in in that prison would have chosen to die but we were never allowed to go outside the oppressive gray walls of the prison ,except walk a few yards to the church or be taken to hospital or transferred to another prison,or a laundry, or to a family for a day if lucky .later on reaching 16 years of age ,which was the time the rest of us were kicked out to slave in houses, hospitals, convents she stated in a newspaper that in 1963 with a Change of staff the place had changed so much >I had long gone by then) the bland dormitories were divided up into smaller sections and they were given lockers how Kind> NOT < of the nuns She was then an adult and got on with the new head nun that she decided to stay on to go to college as for an education I had never heard of those words College or education , Who paid for that what about the other children incarcerated and still being abused, starved, and battered. As a group leader has she been on the Payroll of the Dept of Education or (and)the Religious, giving advice the rest to go to the Redress Board, I wonder if she went herself, Or did she go to The High Court? Divide and Rule. OK Right I just wondered. Ps I forgot who was it she said wrote the letter out to the army to come and rescue all the children. Thank you Paddy for giving us this site to have a say You are an Angel. A REAL ONE.

  4. Paddy says:

    The whereabouts and the structure of these groups is a mystery Christy. I wish I could be of more help. I’m in the same boat as you. According to on ‘leading light’ of SOCA (Ireland) “We have thousands of members”. That statement was made at a press conference given by Mr. Barry Andrews. In the presence of the Minister, I asked this ‘leading light’ to produce the “thousands of emails” he claimed to have. At that point he left the room. Obviously neither I, Minister Andrews or the assembled media got the answer. The plot thickens! Paddy.

  5. christy says:


    Did all of the so called leaders of their groups get jobs working in the houses of the religious whilst in the institutions? Maybe Jim Beresford can tell me the time and place where all of the so called groups hold their meetings. Allegedly as chief researcher for SOCA Ireland this should not be beyond the skills of someone who is an executive member of one such group committee.

    I can then go and ask the questions myself. As I have tried all other avenues Mr Beresford is my last hope as it is nigh on impossible to get any information regarding these groups. You would think that their information was being protected by the State.

    Keep up the good work Paddy.


  6. Angry says:

    Hopefully Jim, you`ll have more SUCCESS in SUING myself, than what your eforts over the years have yieled in your “pursuit” of the State.?. The world needs COMEDIANS.

  7. Angry says:

    Jim, let me ASSURE you, I`m a HE. Now that we`ve cleared THAT up, whats YOUR gender.?.

  8. Angry says:

    Looks like we`re NOT going to get Jim`s tale of DARING-DO detailing his ESCAPE from Artane Industrial School . Pity.

    HOW ABOUT “TRIAL BY COMBAT JIM” .?. Much better than SUING , don`t you think.?.

  9. Paddy says:

    I take that as a gross insult Jim. If that’s the best you can do might I suggest you divert all future comments to another site if you can find one that has given you the liberty and exposure I’ve give you. Paddy.

  10. Jim Beresford says:

    I refer to two submissions dated 25.02.10 appearing under the name “Angry” and which mention me by name.

    I don’t know the identity of this“Angry”, or even whether it is a he, she or it (though the police tell me it is likely to be male).

    Most of the content of these submissions is unintelligible to me. But somewhere among the verbiage there seems to be an attack on my integrity. It appears to be a smear by lies and innuendo.

    I hereby I invite the anonymous author, “Angry”, to repeat what he says about me and put his real name to it.

    Jim Beresford, former Artane child prisoner 14262, Huddersfield, England

  11. Jim Beresford says:

    Paddy: yours 26.02.10

    I do hope we’re not in a “who cares most” contest.

    Jim Beresford, former Artane child prisoner 14262, Huddersfield, England

  12. Paddy says:

    Jim, I leave the last word to you. You seem hell-bent on dragging out this argument. I’m not interested in that. My interest is in people, people who’ve suffered and who were terrified and vulnerable. Surely, even you can see that. I’ve no more to say. Paddy.

  13. Angry says:

    Huddersfield, fast emerging as the last great outpost for anthropologists to study, has as one of its Son`s, the indefatigable Jim Beresford , enjoying continuing success for his well acclaimed “”ESCAPE”” from the Irish Gulag known as Artane Industrial School in Dublin.

    At this stage it would be appropriate to recognise the success of the valiant Jim, and conclude that the considerations given to his grouping of idea`s directly contribute to the civilisation of the behaviour-system so aptly displayed by Irish Soca and their researchers, as to how they intercourse with each other. This new found improvment depended on the slow growth of mutual respect, sympathy, and general kindliness, while simultaneously appearing at the REDRESS BOARD as money grubbing survivors. As shown by Mr Beresford in his condemnation of Survivors as wretched money grubbers, all these feelings can co-exist with each other requiring only the mimimum of intellectuality, as ably demonstrated by Mr Beresford. Their basis is emotional, and humanity acquired these emotions by reason of its unthinking activities amid the course of what passe`s for “acceptable” behaviour by members of Irish Soca, in the course of nature, that is.

    However, mentality as it emerges into co-ordinated activity has a tremendous effect in selecting, emphasing, and disintegrating, and its disintegration which concerns us here, the fractured and somewhat mental aberrations of Mr Beresford as he attempts to equate dreams with REALITY, the dream being that HE wants EVERYONE to hold his views as the ONLY views worth holding, and the REALITY being that STAR-TREK is STILL out there in deep space, being piloted by Jim. Jim needs to get down to some BASIC studying and come to terms with the facts, and the facts Jim are these, your interpretation in considering the emergence of “idea`s” as opposed to the activities you pursue as CHIEF RESEARCHER FOR IRISH SOCA, have no basis in fact, or fiction, in modifying the “idea`s” from which they emerge. Idea`s Jim, arise as explanatory of established custom, and they end by founding novel methods and novel “instituitions”, and its the latter Jim that I feel you STILL reside in.?.

  14. Angry says:

    It`s worse than that, he`s dead Jim, dead Jim, dead Jim dead, it`s worse that that, he`s dead Jim dead. There`s CLING-ONS, on the starboard bow, starboard bow, and so on.

    I see you`ve extended your Celestial travels Jim. Whats it like out there in DEEP SPACE.?. I see here in the Huddersfield “bugle” that you are referred to as “CHIEF RESEARCHER FOR IRISH SOCA” .?. And in the Independent I also see your “press article” to the effect that following the infamous meeting at Maynooth with the bishops , attended by the “head” of Irish Soca, John Kelly, you state that you had no part in “”executive decision making”” at that particular time with regard to that meeting.?. In your capacity as “CHIEF RESEARCHER FOR IRISH SOCA”, this motley crew are STILL seeking engagement with the papal mafia, is that something you support as CHIEF RESEARCHER.?. As ALL heads of Irish Soca went to the REDRESS BOARD and pocketed their dosh, and at the same time were URGING their “members” not to attend the REDRESS BOARD , or the RYAN COMMISSION, was such “advice” based on YOUR research Jim or was it an “”executive” decision.?.

    !!!!!These deluded money-grubbing “survivors” do not speak for me. I have no interest whatever in the RC Church or its doings. Religion is an irrelevance to me. I have no desire to meet the pope – nor do I want any of his money.!!!!!!. Your words Jim . Why are you CHIEF RESEARCHER FOR IRISH SOCA, and supporting these “money grubbing survivors”.?. Just momentarily prick up your ears Jim, and let me catergorically inform you that I do not consider myself as a “”WRETCHED SURVIVOR””, nor do I feel would thousands of others feel that way about themselves.

    Some five or six years ago, or was it seven Jim, a Lady who “quoted”” you from one of your articles, or e-mails, unfortunately MISSPELT one of your words, resulting in a tirade of vitrolic and condemnatory abuse heaped upon her by your goodself , resulting in I believe, you describing her as “IGNORANT”, do you recollect such an event Jim.?. Your legendary distaste for SURVIVORS is well known Jim, your constant diatribes against SURVIVORS who fail to meet your “expectations” gives me the WILLIES, in that its ON A PAR WITH THE ABUSES CONSTANTLY LEVELLED AT US BY THE christian brothers, it seems, they taught you well Mr Beresford.?.

    On a different note Jim , I`m VERY interested in your “”ESCAPE” from Artane , it takes brains to accomplish such a feat Jim, I`m in absolute AWE of you and your success, that after TWO YEARS of horrendous “punishments and abuse”, you finally managed it. Compared to you Jim, I have to be viewed as a DISMAL FAILURE, as I attempted to “”escape” SEVEN times from Artane, three times getting out and roaming around Dublin for some time,and four times being caught on the premises, as it were , I never made it. But you never “tasted” failure in that respect, did you Jim, you GOT AWAY, just like HARDY KRUGER, you made it “home”, the ONE THAT GOT AWAY. Great stuff Jim. How lucky you were NOT to experience the BEATINGS and HUMILITATIONS of us unlucky one`s. For my CHARIOTS OF FIRE escapades in attempting to show a clean pair of heels, I was “rewarded” with PROMOTION to Letterfrack.

    Perhaps Jim , I should have been more like you, and made myself a “nuisance”, and as I read this clipping I have in front of me, you are saying !!!that the christian brothers in Artane considered you a flight risk, and in order to keep an eye on you, they put you to work in their house!!!!!. Jasus Jim , that was a GODSEND,cooked breakfasts,rashers, sausages, white pudding, eggs, fresh bread, REAL tea, I have to say Jim, I could have done with some of that sort of “”punishment”” myself, no such food like that at Letterfrack Jim. And to cap it all Jim, though you were PHYSICALLY in Artane , YOU WERE NEVER A PART OF IT, were you.?.

    PLEASE, PLEASE regale us all Jim with how you !!ESCAPED!! from Artane , give us the DETAILS Jim, excite us, transport us back to childhood with this tale of DARING-DO accomplished by yourself. And DON`T be shy Jim.

    Hopefully, I haven`t made any SPELLING MISTAKES here. I wouldn`t be PLEASED Jim if you called me IGNORANT for such mistakes.

  15. Jim Beresford says:

    Paddy, yours 24.02.10, 16:32

    Many Redress Board applicants have given me accounts of their unpleasant experiences at the Board. The Board and its ugly twin, the Laffoy-Ryan Commission, are nasty creations. I could see that from the outset. The Commission is a fraudulent secret inquiry and the Redress Board is a secret hush-money court where shady business is done behind closed doors. It’s all horribly reminiscent of the Dunshauglin District Court were my problems began.

    I didn’t mean to be unkind to anyone but our cause is not helped by spreading fictions. Some claim that they were forced to sign the waiver. I was merely disposing of that fiction. Thank you for confirming that you weren’t forced to sign. Nobody was. That’s the only point I was making.

    You have, quite rightly, reminded me of the poor life circumstances of some former prisoners. I know. My own circumstances aren’t too good either. I know that you and others have tried to give a voice to the “survivors” but I have to tell you that anonymous people and anonymous crowds cannot have a voice. As you know, there are many “group leaders” who claim a mandate to represent the “survivors”, or some section thereof. But ask to see their membership list and you’ll be told that it is secret so as to protect the confidentiality of the members. But I’m afraid it is nonsense- and disingenuous nonsense – to speak of leading, representing or having a mandate from, unidentifiable people. I might as well claim that I represent 5,000 anonymous “survivors” – and who is to contradict me?

    The point is that you have a voice only if you are an identifiable person and a group has a voice only if consists of identifiable people. Rather like a political party or a trades union – you need a list of identifiable people who can be balloted to give legitimacy to a spokesperson (leader, or whatever) and to the group’s policies, tactics, etc. Only then does it make sense to speak of “representation” and “mandates”.

    The State stole our identities (some even had their names stolen) and imposed criminal identities upon us. Some people seem to be ashamed of themselves because of that false identity. The Ryan report carries on the dehumanising process. The report anonymises us. Ryan represents us to the public as a mindless, faceless mass of sub-humanity that lurks in the shadows and dare not reveal itself.

    If we are ever to have a voice we have to be prepared to identify ourselves – and in large numbers. Each of us has to stand up in public and declare “I am not what the State says I am”.

    My apologies – I digress.

    I’m aware that you have, to your great credit, long been a vociferous critic of the Redress Board – and particularly of what you call the “gagging order”. I think you can expose that corrupt outfit without falling foul of the law –if indeed breaking an unjust law is something that troubles you.

    As far as I can see, nothing in the Redress Act prevents anybody disclosing non-identifying information on the procedures and conduct of cases at the Board. The applicant receives a no-fault settlement – like an out of court settlement. The rules are designed to protect the accused (against whom nothing has been legally proven) from defamation, etc. If by breaking the gagging order you mean publicly identifying non-convicted accused persons, I think you may be treading in dangerous territory.

    My problem with the waiver is not so much the gagging provisions in the Act (and the attendant legal sanctions) but, rather, that by signing the waiver I would be making a statement about myself which I know (and the State knows) to be false and which is detrimental to my personal and legal interests and beneficial to the State’s interests (i.e. a statement to the effect that nothing was amiss with the Dunshauglin Court). Moreover (and this may be true of other “survivors”), the State holds a huge file on me containing a tissue of malicious lies about myself and my family and I would, by signing the waiver, validate those lies.

    The waiver, once signed, is a document with legal meaning and effect that cannot subsequently be denounced by the signatory. The State has, in effect, invited me to lie about my personal history (and the State’s history) in return for money – that’s bribery. Once I have signed to the lie, it thereafter becomes the official truth – about me and about the State. By signing the waiver I assist the State in imposing a criminal identity upon me. As far as I am concerned the truth is non-negotiable.

    What credibility do I have if one day I freely sign a legal statement and the next day I try to resile from that statement? None whatever – and especially not if I have gained financially by signing the statement. My subsequent denunciation would not in any case alter the legal meaning and effect of the signed statement. I could only credibly denounce the statement if I could show that I had signed it under duress or without knowledge of its legal meaning and effect (hence the careful wording in the waiver). And if I somehow managed to subvert the statement, the State might demand its money back!

    Jim Beresford, former Artane child prisoner 14262, Huddersfield, England

  16. Paddy says:

    Good advice Hanora. Take heed Jim.

  17. Paddy says:

    With respect Jim, you seem to forget that many people who accepted payment from the Redress Board were literally poverty stricken even homeless at the time – some still are. Nobody forced me to sign a waiver, I did so with my own hand and own pen. Having said that I’ve said it loud and very clear – check newspapers – that the Redress Board is a shambles and flies in the face of both democracy and natural justice.
    The gagging order is a disgrace but could be broken if enough of us came out and spoke about what goes on behind the closed doors of the Redress Board. The problem with that is that those who went to the Board as vulnerable people remain vulnerable and afraid. We have to understand that and show understanding. Paddy

  18. Jim Beresford says:

    Christy: yours 23.02.10, 13:10

    Thanks for that Christy. Now I understand how Redress Board applicants were forced to sign the waiver.

    Article 44.2.2 says in full “The State guarantees not to endow any religion.” Having those words read to you would be a painful experience and might persuade you to sign the waiver. But I think most people could resist that pressure.

    The Indemnity Agreement is a different matter. It comprises ten pages of extremely boring legal text followed by five pages of signatures. Most people can’t get past the first page without experiencing the signs of terminal boredom – a painful and ultimately fatal condition.

    A typical Redress Board applicant is marched unwillingly into Redress Board Headquarters (dubbed the Lubyanka) and ordered to sign the waiver.

    The applicant protests: “I’ll never sign! You’ll never make me sign!”

    The applicant is then tied to a chair. The Board Inquisitor waves a bag of money (€63K) before the applicant’s eyes, saying in a seductive voice: “you can have the money if you sign”.

    The stubborn applicant screams: “I don’t want the money! I’ll never sign! You’ll never make me sign!

    Losing patience, the Inquisitor – a B-movie fan – says: “Vee have vays of making you sign”.

    The cruel Inquisitor then begins reading out the Indemnity Agreement in a loud voice. The wretched applicant squirms in agony with the symptoms of terminal boredom, but is still resisting.

    By the time the Inquisitor reaches the end of the first page the applicant is begging for mercy and screaming: “I’ll sign! I’ll sign! Just stop reading that Indemnity Agreement, I can’t stand the boredom any more”.

    The applicant is untied and signs the waiver in a trembling hand.

    I’m pleased we finally got to the bottom of the matter, Christy.

    Jim Beresford, former Artane child prisoner 14262, Huddersfield, England

  19. Hanora Brennan says:

    Hey Jim! Softly Softly catchee monkey!

  20. christy says:

    I got my facts from the Redress Board web site not from a news-hound,
    JIM look at ARTICLE 44.2.2 of the constitution, We were coerced by the INDEMNITY AGREEMENT between the state and CORI.



  21. Jim Beresford says:

    “It’s striking, hearing men such as Andrew Madden and Colm O’Gorman, how deeply abandoned survivors feel by the Church into which they were baptised” (Medb Ruane). Do Andrew and Colm really feel abandoned?

    I was never a member of the RC Church but that organisation was desperate to gain possession of me – so desperate that it ganged up with the corrupt Irish State to have me illegally incarcerated in a Church/State prison where I could be exploited for profit and perverted pleasure.

    I don’t think we can call that abandonment. Give me abandonment any day!

    I escaped from the prison and from Ireland nearly 50 years ago and I’ve had nothing to do with the RC Church or the Irish State since then. And I feel all the better for that.

    But evidently other Irish “survivors” feel deeply abandoned by the RC Church. It would seem that many are pining for the sheep fold.

    Some Irish survivors seem to spend a good deal of time in secret conclave with bishops. And they write letters to the pope. Some have invited the pope to Ireland and expressed a wish to meet him in person. Why?

    It seems that they want words of comfort from their Holy Father – and they want to tap him for a bit of money!

    These deluded money-grubbing “survivors” do not speak for me. I have no interest whatever in the RC Church or its doings. Religion is an irrelevance to me. I have no desire to meet the pope – nor do I want any of his money.

    This unhealthy craving for papal attention and money shows that the wretched “survivors” remain slaves to their childhood brainwashing. What on earth is wrong with you all? Is it something in the water over there? Your pope obsession is part of your problem. I’ll count to ten and you’ll snap out of it. The pope is not your daddy, there is no Santa Claus in the Vatican. Wake up, grow up and think for yourselves.

    Judging by the Irish newspapers lately, the whole country is obsessed with bishops and popes. The country seems to be trapped in a 1950’s time warp. In those days the newspapers were always full of papal news. I remember the day Pope Pius XII died. Normal business was suspended in my RC school. We were all marched off to the chapel next door to pray for the repose of the pontiff’s soul. (I wondered why such a holy man needed my prayers).

    The whole of Ireland went into deep mourning as though everyone had lost a much-loved father. Everyone wore black armbands, newspapers were printed with black edges, Irish radio played solemn music, flags flew at half-mast, buildings were draped in black, Dublin shops did a roaring trade in pope memorabilia. Even as a child I could see that the whole thing had gone well over the top. After weeks of this hysteria, white smoke signalled the emergence of a new pontiff and mourning gave way to celebration.

    The Ireland that I escaped from all those years ago was a nation of brainwashed Catholic zombies mired in superstition, ignorance and violence and obsessed with the doings of the pope and his clergy.

    It seems that little has changed in dear old Ireland since my enforced departure.

    I would remind the Irish pope groupies that children were being raped in Ireland’s child prisons during the last papal tour of Ireland in 1979.

    Jim Beresford, former Artane child prisoner 14262, Huddersfield, England

  22. Jim Beresford says:

    Christy: yours 22.02.10, 18:30 & 18:50

    Lets not get bogged down in figures, Christy.

    The figures are all up on the Redress Board’s website for everyone to read

    The Board is still processing cases so we don’t know how many people will have signed the waiver when the Board finally closes for business. As of December 2009 it looks like the figure was almost 13,000. I think we can safely guess that the final figure will be well over 13,000 (though less than 15,000). I took the 13,743 figure from Eilish O’Regan’s Irish Independent piece (20.02.10) in which she said, “The Residential Institutions Redress Board has so far processed 13,743 claims from victims of institutional abuse.”

    But the precise number of signatories, whatever it finally turns out to be, is irrelevant to the point I was making.

    The number represents a large proportion of survivors of Ireland’s child prisons, or at any rate a large proportion of those who have chosen to complain.

    The point is that the State can claim that the child prison survivors were given the opportunity to complain about the courts that imprisoned them but that the great majority of them voluntarily signed a document agreeing that they had no complaints about the courts.

    The State knows of course that the great majority of us were unlawfully imprisoned.

    When the dust finally settles on the Redress Board and the Ryan Commission, the record will show that hardly any of surviving prisoners complained about unlawful imprisonment. (remember that the Ryan report doesn’t mention unlawful imprisonment).

    Before long Irish politicians and academics will be citing the Redress Board settlement and the Ryan report as proof positive that Ireland’s courts behaved properly and that no child was ever unlawfully imprisoned. The State has got what it most wanted – and at a very cheap price. The State has been spared the disgrace of its kangaroo courts being exposed to the world and it has not had to pay a penny in compensation for unlawful imprisonment.

    Because nobody complained of false imprisonment, and signed to that effect, the State was free to write a fake history of the child prisoners – a history that excluded the story of the kangaroo courts. And it cleverly got the prison survivors to collude in the writing of that fake history.

    Thus the State’s illegal mass – incarceration crime has effectively been erased from Irish history.

    You invite me to agree that 924 people were coerced into signing the waiver.

    But I have no evidence that ANYONE was coerced. Have you?

    It is important that we clarify this for the general readership.

    Anyone who was offered money at the Redress Board was told that they could take the money only if they agreed to sign the “Acceptance and Waiver Form”. They were free to sign the form, or not, as they chose.

    No-one was coerced into signing the form.

    The State would never have been so foolish as to use crude force. That tactic would almost certainly have backfired and scuppered the State’s plan.

    What the State did was to make you an offer you wouldn’t refuse.

    According to the Redress Board, eleven people refused to sign. Of course that doesn’t count those who refused to apply to the Board in the first place.

    People report that they were abused, insulted and degraded at the Redress Board and that they were offered settlements well below what they felt their cases warranted. I accept all that. We’ve known since childhood that the Irish State is a pretty nasty outfit. But that is not to say that anyone was coerced into signing the waiver.

    Jim Beresford, former Artane child prisoner 14262, Huddersfield, England

  23. christy says:

    Hi Paddy,

    The subject of clerical child sexual abuse needs to be Fryed i.e. Short, Sharp and to the point.
    Not Clerical Child Abuse but Clerical Child Rape and as such my postings from now on will be just that Short, Sharp and to the point.


  24. christy says:

    SOME facts on redress

    The average cost and expenses paid to solicitors in respect of applications to the
    redress board amounted to 10,985 euro
    = to 16.43% of the award

    we paid for them so we did


  25. christy says:

    HI jim

    The number was 14,667 not 13,743 as you say.

    Shall we agree that 924 were COERCED????


  26. christy says:

    Jim beresford:yours on feb22,at 16:50

    Jim you missed the point about coerced

    but you are right about hush-money but not in the way you mean it


  27. Jim Beresford says:

    Christy: yours 20.02.10, 20:35

    No-one was coerced into signing anything at the Redress Board.
    All 13,743 former child prisoners signed voluntarily.

    In return for hush-money they joined the Irish State’s conspiracy of silence, the omerta.

    Their silence has buried the truth forever.

    Jim Beresford, former Artane child prisoner 14262, Huddersfield, England

  28. mmaguire says:

    The best revolt is to hit their pockets. Stop giving “dues” to a non responsive organisation.

    Donate to a charity of your choice.


  29. Charles O'Rourke says:

    A revolt by 24 bishops is the last thing Ratzinger wants and he has choosen to dump Martin , true, but I was wondering what he would do if there was a revolt by the laity?. There lies the only hope for change in Ireland, the alternative to a revolt is a nightmare for the parents and children of Ireland. To expect that the foreign minister of the Irish Republic will act by declaring the Vatican’s ambassador persona non grata is possible but not likely. He will even allow a foreign country to read a press release to the citizenry in their churches across the country which he is foreign minister of. Michael Martin, let me ask you a question. How do you wish to be remembered in Irish history?.

  30. Charles O'Rourke says:

    Of course Martins days are numbered and he must be feeling betrayed, bewildered, and amazed at the cunning way he was used by Ratzinger to “seem” to clean up Ryan and Murphy. Of course he is expended and the red hat awaits him, just like Hitler always promoted his generals to field marshal’s prior to their demise. On realisation of this then Diarmuid Martin and we survivors will have reached common understanding

  31. Angry says:

    Like Christy , my 200 is waiting to go , meaningful donations will advance a proper footing to unleash the strangehold held on the State by church and religious orders. We need a dedicated legal team to break this deadlock.

    The non event which occured at the vatican last week will have filtered down to the christian brothers as a signal for them too, to start showing their faces again, and like the bishops display of “unity” to back Drennan, and question the Murphy Report, so will the BLACK GARBS begin to reasses their “legal position” in regards to Brian Cowens call for FURTHER SUBSTANTIAL REDRESS to Survivors. A full scale BLITZKREIG has now been started by Ratzinger to show who is the BOSS, and he has torpedoed Diarmuid Martin, to show his intent in continuing to ignore the States call for Leanza to appear in front of a State Inquiry.

    Michael Martin should display some solidarity with Survivors in BANNING this popes letter to Ireland, until such time as LEANZA can be taken LEGALLY to the committe he was invited to attend, and made to answer the questions posed by Yvonne Murphy and her Commission. Anything LESS is a waste of time and space. Diplomatic Immunity MEANS NOTHING where the wholesale raping, buggering and sodomizing of children is the burning issue. THE STATE HAS TO ACT.

  32. Angry says:

    The plethora of “homilies” and “religious” articles now beginning to flood the papers again , bears testimony to the bishops and their spokespielers regaining “confidence” once more to approach the public with their mealy mouthed tosh. The hymn howlers are emerging again in force, FAITH OF OUR FATHERS beginning its resonance once more. No consideration given, or even a decent timespace afforded to Diarmuid Martin to pack his bags quietly and await the call of his masters to some unknown destination.

    We are told “mass attendances” are on the up , but its merely BOTH parents and other members of family accompanying their children to ensure the innocent one`s get out unscathed.

    When an aircraft crashes in some part of the world, the airline manufacturer sends a team of crash investigators to the scene. In Ireland, we have had some TWENTY SIX such catastrophic “crashes” in diocese`s around the Country, and the “manufacurer” sends one “investigator” to deal with all TWENTY SIX “crashes”.?. When the State calls him to “explain” these “crashes”, he legs it to Rome with the SKY PILOTS responsible for such “crashes”, and attempts a cover up under the cloak of diplomatic immunity , leaving Yvonne Murphy and her team the REAL investigators,flying on one engine.?.

  33. Angry says:

    The King is dead, long live the King.

    The intolerable impositions placed on Diarmuid Martin last week by unknowns in the vatican now heralds the end of Diarmuid Martins engagement in the process of accountability and responsibility sought by him on the behalf of Survivors. There is none coming, and there will be none, based on the premise that Diarmuid Martins goal of restructuring the church and hierarchy as outlined by him following the Murphy Report, is now dead in the water.

    Diarmuids Martins “march” for salutary justice of some sort hit a brickwall in Rome last week as it suddenly dawned that of the twenty four bishops there from Ireland , more than HALF of them would have to go if a nationwide audit of diocesan impropriety had been called for by Ratzinger. Those are the stark facts. This meeting had NOTHING to do about Survivors of clerical sexual terrorism, this meeting was about getting rid of Diarmuid Martin and maintaining the status quo, bad as it presently is. A mass revolt by Irish bishops is the LAST thing Ratzinger wanted, on that basis, Diarmuid HAD to go, as the Cosa Nostra say, “nothing personal Diarmuid, purely business”.

    The sublime pincer or ” panzer” tactic by Ratzinger and Leanza to embarrass the Murphy Commission worked, and worked exceedingly well, as a snub to State and Nation, it has no parrallel, bow to my cross, and kiss my ring, thats the message to the Dail and its erstwhile members, and as for Survivors it was , up yours. The vatican, still intent in the ignorance of raising humanity above the general level of animal life, and thats just them.!.

    Whether you love him or loathe him , there is something of the honest broker about Diarmuid Martin , he went as far as he was allowed, but then was stopped in his tracks by events beyond his control, and became subject to a higher ruthless element intent on its survival at any cost, and like us on a search for truth, the real truth, Diarmuid Martin himself has become a victim. Whats more ironic than that.

  34. Paddy says:

    Kathleen O’Malley has asked that I post the following on her behalf. I am happy to do so. Paddy
    The Auditors have been summoned . The book are not balancing. Perhaps the “Prada” shoes etc may have to go? Shame.
    The Spin Doctoring Wheel is in motion again. Alas a bit late, however chronologically the dates 1974 to 2004 appear incorrect, perhaps I like thousands of Survivors just has a bad dream. What mention is there of the prevailing years?
    Religion is a very personal matter, I prefer to be guided by my conscience. I visit Church Buildings only as a tourist, admire the artefacts and leave.
    Kathleen O’Malley.

  35. Its a fact that Information Technology and Internet is beaming news and reality around the globe to the most remote parts of Africa and Asia on an instantaneous basis.
    The huge differential whereby Europe was living lives thousands of years in advance of the nomadic lives in Africa is closing at terrific rate.

    No longer is a National or church leader able to hold a whole nation in ignorance by means of news blackouts or bans on information. No longer can any leader engender a society with his unique justification of totalitarianism or religious camouflage. Ignorance is rapidly becoming a bygone era. North Korea included.
    Old Rome sits on old concepts and all the time the news has got out.

    Still in India and other states, the Leper is sought out for treatment in exchange for conversion at religious foundations. A trade is made and crude one at that. Charity need not be dressed up in the clothes of the holy nor should it be.In the leper colonies of Bangalore today exactly this trade is being made. Your soul for your survival, that’s what’s on offer and it is a open and verbal proposition being made to the dying. Its an evil trade. The Catholic Church is at the peak of this trade. Ignorant and desperate subservience in exchange for ‘charitable’ giving.

    Yet there is another simple trade and this is it: So long as victims speak, the Catholic church cannot flourish. And the truth of the church is that it cannot exist except on basis of desperation and denial by the needy provided that the truth continues to be spoken by those who know.
    Its down hill now for Rome, no matter what tactics are applied nor what man leads it.
    Because the truth has been so horrendous, that no reasonable earthly parent or guardian can possibly or willingly let their offspring knowingly fall into the hands of evil in light of what has come to public knowledge now.

    After all, mans foremost biological programming is to ensure his survival through his children as does every animal according to Darwin. Religion and the Roman ones particularly are being consigned to the dump of medieval theories and conspiracies.

    Charity comes with the person not with the deal.

  36. Charles O'Rourke says:

    To Tommy Miller, Great news has come my way and you are achieving concrete results and my spiritual life has improved immensely, Your work is a significant contributing factor to the improvement of our healing and the creation of a collegial fraternity. Any similarities to a press release from a different jurisdiction is intentional.

  37. christy says:

    To whom it may concern,

    The way I see the Legal Fund working is that all donations would go to the chosen solicitor and put into a bank account with signatories to access funds.

    The signatories would be Barry, Paddy and the solicitor.

    Then the three wise men can do what is needed to represent survivors on a legal footing as and how they see fit.
    If there is anyone out there who can come up with something better be my guest.


  38. christy says:

    Hi Catherine,

    Well said, you can lay the blame for all of what you say on the so called leaders of the survivors groups, they allowed the church/state to shaft us.

    For instance:-

    Why did they not get their own legal advice about the Redress Act?

    Why did they not make a legal challenge when the Redress Board started to make payments lower than the stated ” comparable to high court payments”?

    Why no legal challenge to the abuse of our legal and constitutional rights with a gagging order?

    Why no legal challenge when we could not have legal representation with us at the hearing of the Redress Board?

    Why no legal challenge to the violation of the constitutional rights of survivors when coerced into signing gagging orders by the Redress Board/State/and the lawyers acting for them at the Redress Board?

    Why no legal challenge to the indemnity agreement, as it is not and never was constitutional?

    Paddy, Barry my cheque for 200 Euro’s is waiting to go, we cannot delay any longer. We have to strike while the iron is hot. The 4 reports will soon take a step back from the next handball by a French footballer.


    PS Is that not a Freudian slip or what?

  39. Charles O'Rourke says:

    So much bravery and dignity we are witnessing before our very eyes. So much silence and deference from our government along side so much arrogance from a foreign jurisdiction. Dare the republic assert itself, dare they for the first time howl.

  40. christy says:

    Hi Paddy,
    The Rat is some piece of work, he is now putting the onus of responsibility for what happened to their kids at the hands of his predatory paedophile priests and religious on to the people of Ireland.


  41. says:

    It’s time to stop burning up our time looking for what we will never get..the Pope and what Rome stands for will never care about those they abused and say sorry and mean it..looking only gives them a sense of control over survivors…its my opinion we should go and get as much extra cash rewards as we can and walk away if we value are health above this endless war against the heartless inhuman people of Rome. Patrick

  42. Catherine says:

    “the lack of respect for the human person” in society.

    How many have spotted the con here re human PERSON?

    It is HUMAN BEING, because if you use PERSON in law it means you are a corporation and not a FREE SOVEREIGN HUMAN BEING.

    The Vat Rat like the others have laws designed to suit their own purpose only.

    These men of make laws “legal”, but that does not mean they are lawful according to the laws of the Universe.

  43. FXR says:

    It seems naive to want to meet one of the main architects of the cover up just so he can get some good press and max out the PR mileage. The only reason I think anyone should meet him would be to make sure it was filmed live and then knock his silly little hat off his head.

    The Popes Gulag

    The perpetrators are shuffled, moved, laws over ridden
    While his hand like the Curia, still remains hidden
    On the breast of his Soutane hangs his cross of power
    Pontifex Maximus in his godly, unassailable, tower

    Outside his balcony the audience awaits
    Marshalled like sheep by childhood faith
    The title is all, the flawed man is immune
    Believing with god through him they commune

    They kneel with closed eyes for a word from his lips
    With soft manicured hand half raised the faithful he lifts
    For their loyalty words rain like soothing refrains
    Not once will they question his dubious claims

    Those who would challenged lie tombed and mute
    Gone with the tide, drowned out by all they refute
    By the power, the pomp, the dazzling display
    By the peddling of hope on some unreachable day

    No thought for his victims can enter the square
    They fear far more how their own souls will fare
    The rape of children their faith can not sway
    Forgotten like something they’ve long put away

  44. Catherine says:

    A total waste of time and energy expecting Vat Rat to do anything.

    This church has always been abusing children as they always felt they had the divine right to do so.They made themselves gods and conned the sheep.

    Through the use of guilt and SIN they managed to keep the truth hidden for thousands of years.

    Look at the way these men of god dress, look at the symbols before your eyes and ask what they represent?

    Why should this cult change its ways now?

    It is only the people who were forced to become members at birth in Ireland who HAVE THE POWER TO DO SOMETHING.

    Write to the Bishop and sign yourselves free from this cult.

    We owe it to all those humans used and abused for thousands of years all over the world, not just little ireland.

    We owe it as a sign of solidarity to the BRAVE men and women like Paddy Doyle, who brought the truth to light, so that we might wake up and act and rid our society of these evil men and women of god.

  45. Hanora Brennan says:

    For survivors to expect anything from the Rat in the Vat beggars belief! When will they realise they are not part of their equation at all? Start closer to home (boring I know) and work your way up! These men don’t get to dress in pink because of their compassion, decency and integrity – they themselves are morally lax and it’s now they’ve been exposed on the world’s stage for what they truly represent that people may just start the questions so long left unasked.

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