Priest at centre of gay images storm granted temporary leave


A CATHOLIC priest embroiled in controversy over the display of gay pornographic images has taken temporary leave from his duties as parish priest of Pomeroy in Co Tyrone.

Fr Martin McVeigh requested and was granted temporary leave by Primate of All-Ireland Cardinal Seán Brady after a meeting in Pomeroy between local parents and representatives of the archdiocese of Armagh on Friday night proved “inconclusive”.

The archdiocese has been conducting an inquiry into how the images were “inadvertently” shown by the priest to a group of parents and one child on March 26th.

During a powerpoint presentation about children’s first Confession gay images were shown. The priest said he had no idea where they had originated and that the memory stick on which they were located was used by several people.

The images were removed from the screen, Cardinal Brady said in a statement in early April.

“The priest has stated that he had no knowledge of the offending imagery. The archdiocese immediately sought the advice of the PSNI who indicated that, on the basis of the evidence available, no crime had been committed,” said Cardinal Brady at the time.

There was no suggestion that the images were of minors and no suggestion they were illegal.

Since then the computer laptop in question has been stolen from Fr McVeigh’s house. The PSNI have appealed to the public for information to help establish the circumstances behind the theft.

Another attempt was made to resolve the issue during Friday’s meeting, but many parents remained unhappy.

The Catholic Communications Office said a further meeting will take place on the matter and that Fr McVeigh, at his own request, had asked for temporary leave and this was granted by the cardinal.