Pope Francis: seen by many as separate from the institution he leads, and which he himself struggles to reform. Photograph: Tony Gentile/Reuters

It is the story of a photograph: four cardinals, all Irish, and one president, Mary McAleese. The occasion was the elevation in 2007 of the then prima(...)

On March 29th 1975 Fr Seán Brady, later the Catholic primate, was asked by Bishop McKiernan to conduct a canonical inquiry into allegations of abuse against the Norbertine priest Fr Brendan Smyth. Photograph: Eric Luke/The Irish Times.

And so ends one of the sorriest sagas in the abuse crisis which has engulfed the Catholic Church in Ireland. It first came to public notice with the j(...)

The Court of Appeal has halted three actions for damages brought against a Catholic Bishop in a representative capacity over the church’s alleged failed to act to prevent paedophile priest Fr Brendan Smyth sexually abusing children. Photograph: Colin Keegan/Collins.

The Court of Appeal has halted three actions for damages brought against a Catholic Bishop in a representative capacity over the church’s alleged fail(...)

In 1975, Cardinal Seán Brady conducted canonical investigations into allegations by two teenage boys of abuse by Fr Brendan Smyth. Photograph: Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker

Hearing Cardinal Seán Brady’s evidence to the North’s Historical Institutional Abuse Inquiry was to be reminded of a damning conclusion in Judge Yvonn(...)

File photograph of former abbot of the Norbertine Order and Brendan Smyth’s superior, Kevin Smith, who told police he did not realise at the time that paedophilia was a crime.

The former abbot of the Kilnacrott Norbertine Abbey in Co Cavan, Kevin Smith, has been accused of telling lies about his knowledge of when Fr Brend(...)

 Cardinal Seán Brady. A brother, sister and their  cousin have appealed against the High Court dismissal of their action against the cardinal.  File  photograph: Eric Luke/The Irish Times

Irish Catholic Church authorities have been accused of extreme deceit and equitable fraud in a case involving settlements with victims of abuser Fr(...)

 Brendan Smyth (right) leaving court in Dublin in 1997. Photograph: Alan Betson

A Stg £25,000 payment made to a man who sued in the Northern Ireland courts over being sexually abused as a child over years by paedophile priest Fr B(...)