Call for accused priests not to be stood down at Masses

Tue, Dec 4, 2012, 00:00

Priests accused of child sex abuse should never be stood down at parish Masses and should not be asked to vacate their places of residence unless particular circumstances demand it.

These were among proposals put to the Catholic Church child protection watchdog, its National Board for Safeguarding Children, at a recent meeting with the Association of Catholic Priests .

The association’s team of Fr Séan McDonagh, Fr Tony Flannery and Fr Brendan Hoban met board chief executive Ian Elliott last Friday as part of a review of church guidelines in the area of child protection.

The association team also said that an accused priest should be entitled to know the name of his accuser and to have the accusation in writing.