Bishop Comiskey sold city apartment for £95,000 before leaving for US

 

THE Bishop of Ferns, Dr Brendan Comiskey, sold his Dublin apartment for £95,000 in the summer before his departure for the US.

The property was sold by private tender last May and the sale was recorded at the Registry of Deeds office two weeks ago on January 17th.

The apartment at Donnybrook was first purchased in 1988 for £80,000 in the name of the Diocese of Ferns. It was recorded as the property of St Aidan's Diocesan Trust, registered at Bishop's House in Wexford. That deal is believed to have been handled by the bishop.

In September 1993 Bishop Comiskey personally purchased the property from the trust at an undisclosed price. He arranged a mortgage for the apartment at Donnybrook Green, Greenfield Manor, with the First National Building Society. This mortgage was cleared on June 8th last following the sale.

The apartment was purchased by a couple living in Blackrock, who have since let it.

Bishop Comiskey took leave from the Ferns diocese last September to go to the US for alcohol addiction treatment, which finished last month. He is now believed to be in England but has visited Rome in recent weeks.

Last night Father Jackie McCabe, who is involved with the finances of the Diocese of Ferns, said he had "nothing further to say".

"I believe the bishop's return is imminent. I am sure he will answer all those questions when he comes back," said Father McCabe.

Bishop Comiskey has again missed his promised deadline for returning to the diocese. Initially he had been due to return in time for Midnight Mass on Christmas Eve, but this was extended to mid January and then to the end of January.

His spokesman, Father Walter Forde, said yesterday he did not now know when Bishop Comiskey would be returning. "I honestly don't have a date," he said.

He said the "practical" reason for Bishop Comiskey not returning before this week was that he did not wish to "overshadow" the publication of the Catholic bishops' report on child sex abuse.

He said he expected the bishop to return "within the next week or 10 days".