New bishop committed to healing
Canon William Crean, parish priest of Cahirciveen in Co Kerry and newly appointed Bishop of the Diocese of Cloyne, has admitted a level of apprehension about the appointment.
Speaking today at St Colman’s Cathedral in Cobh, the bishop-elect said he was committing himself to do all he could with others in the diocese to bring healing and hope to the lives of all victims of abuse and their families.
“Because I am deeply conscious of the trauma of these years past - so much suffering endured by young people at the hands of a few - sufferings compounded by the failure of those who didn’t believe them and those who didn’t hear their cry for help,” he said.
“One thing I ask, however, is your patience to allow me time to grasp the full measure of this deep hurt,” he added.
The previous Bishop of Cloyne, Dr John Magee, had stepped down in 2010 after it was revealed he did not follow proper child protection guidelines.
The Cloyne report, which investigated how clerical child sex abuse allegations were handled in the diocese between 1996 and 2009, detailed a catalogue of failures on the part of church authorities. It laid the blame squarely with the former bishop and Msgr Denis O’Callaghan.
In 2009 the Cork based Bishop said he was withdrawing from the running of the diocese in order to dedicate himself fully to the Commission of Investigation of Cloyne report.
However, he retained the title of Bishop of Cloyne. Most Reverend Dermot Clifford took over as Apostolic Administrator of the Diocese of Cloyne.
The diocese has a Catholic population of over 150,000 people in 46 parishes with 107 churches and encompasses most of Co Cork.
Canon Crean served as parish priest in Castlegregory/Cloghane (1999 - 2006) and in Cahirciveen since 2006. He also served on the executive of the National Conference of Priests of Ireland for three years in the 1980s.
Primate of All Ireland Cardinal Seán Brady congratulated Canon Crean on his appointment.
Speaking from Rome, Cardinal Brady said: "On this the feast of Saint Colman, patron saint of the Diocese of Cloyne, I warmly welcome the news that the Holy Father Pope Benedict XVI has named Canon William Crean, Parish Priest of Cahirciveen, Bishop of Cloyne."
"I am confident that his ability and experience will greatly benefit the pastoral life of the diocese and, in addition, to the Irish Bishops’ Conference."
Additional reporting: PA