Yet Another Clerical Child-Abuse Scandal

June 19, 2007 at 1:59 pm 1 comment

A Catholic Parish Priest from Kerry has just been jailed for using €20,000, including gambling winnings, to finance his lover, already a twice-convicted child-rapist, to rape another child. Bishop Joseph Duffy of Clogher believes that

This is a very sad and tragic case and I ask you to keep everyone involved in your thoughts and prayers.

Note, it is ‘sad and tragic’, not outrageous or horrific. Note, ‘everyone involved’, with no distinction between the victims and the abusers. He could well be describing a natural disaster, so let’s look at the court evidence. >>>

First and Second Crimes

In Dublin in 1988, Fr. Jeremiah McGrath began a sexual affair with Billy Adams, who had already been convicted of child sex abuse. A year later, Adams raped another child, and Fr. McGrath gave him money to flee to Scotland to avoid arrest.

Adams was, however, arrested and spent six years in prison. He moved to Liverpool, where Fr. McGrath gave him more money to rent a flat. In 2005, he befriended a dysfunctional Liverpool family with two children.

Third Crime

Fr. McGrath then gave Adams money to buy gifts for the family’s eleven-year-old daughter and, when the family discovered that Adams was a twice-convicted paedophile, Fr. McGrath denied this. Meanwhile, Adams was raping the girl.

For her twelfth birthday, Adams brought the girl to Blackpool where he raped her every night for three nights. Then Adams, Fr. McGrath, the girl, her brother and her mother all went together on holiday to Blackpool as ‘the Adamson family’.

Arrest and Trial

When Adams was arrested, police found a character reference in his flat. Fr. McGrath had written it for a judge when Adams had been charged with drunk driving. In this, Fr. McGrath claimed that he was ‘a Catholic Priest and an uncle of William’. This was a lie.

Adams then wrote to Fr. McGrath to help him get bail. Fr. McGrath replied:

You know me. Anything that is possible I’ll do it… it was a very difficult time. We gave it our best shot. At least it was a good year, 2005 and please God next year will be just as good.

Fr. McGrath wore his clerical collar during the trial. When he was asked in court whether he thought he had a responsibility to warn the family about the sort of person Billy Adams was, he replied ‘No’.

Everyone Involved

Now Bishop Duffy wants us to keep ‘everyone involved’ in our prayers. In a masterly euphemism, he does concede that ‘we all feel very let down’ because

Some areas of Fr. McGrath’s lifestyle fell short of what you, and I, would expect of a priest.

He also assures us that ‘the church is committed to the protection of children’. But he has no serious words of condemnation for the crimes against children of which Fr. McGrath and his lover have been convicted.

When will the Catholic Church stop defending the rape of children?

BBC Report on Case | Bishop Duffy in Irish Times


Entry filed under: Religion.

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1 Comment Add your own

  • 1. Sean  |  January 6, 2008 at 11:04 pm

    Thank you for posting this about this evil paedo and his lover!

    I am a survivor of different kind of abuse by catholics in Ireland and England.

    As a young boy I rebelled against being a catholic. That was the worst mistake of my life. I was continually beaten by my mother and father. When my dad used a leather belt to lash out at me, my brother in law who was in the house at the time, came to my rescue, had he not I may well not be here now. I was 6 at the time. My father was put out of the house that night never to return.

    The abuse didn’t stop there. Because my mother was on her own she sent myself and my twin to boarding school in Birmingham. There the fascist nun’s ruled our lives. Having survived that ordeal we were sent to another senior college boarding school in Sussex where the brothers of what ever order they were continued the violence on me. I witnessed lots of sexual abuse in the college by one of the brothers.

    But I guess the real sadness in this story is the beating I received from my mothers brother for stealing £20. I was 8 years of age at the time, my jaw was broken in this frenzied attack on me. It was witnessed by my mother, her sister and a cousin, they watched as he administered the beating to me. No amount of screaming for mercy saved me. To this day I am left in poverty from the traumatic effect of this beating. I am a talented creative person, but I can not carry through to financial gain because of that trauma.

    Even sadder, the church is not accountable to any one for their actions. Now in Ireland a statute of limitation protects catholics from being named and shamed and are still free to abuse as they please.

    The interesting thing is the so called Irish constitution’s preamble is an oath of allegiance to the catholic church from birth. Irish children are forced into the catholic religion with out their consent. This ensures a constant flow of children into their hands. With poverty, these people continue to abuse vulnerable children in their care. There is a lot of poverty in Ireland created by the state for the catholic church to continue their abuse.

    I don’t know if I made any sense, but I feel now I have to remove this evil entity from our land. Catholic abuse has been systematic since the formation of the catholic freestate in Ireland. We the Irish people should have the freedom of choice to choose what religion if any.

    The catholic church needs to be removed from the education system, Bertie’s excuse that the system would crash only for the catholic church is an admission of his inability to run the country. He simply forgets the christian brothers had to be closed down rather quickly because of the claims that were going to be coming against them.

    All children are at risk from these people and will always be at risk as long as they stay in our education system. Though a lot of them are now not allowed to teach in schools, many lay catholics continue in their footsteps abusing children.

    Yours sincerely



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A blog by Michael Nugent

Welcome to my blog about living in the maddest country on earth. Please feel free to leave a comment.

I also write Bionic Bohs, a blog about following Bohemians football club in the 1970s.


Bionic Bohs

As mentioned above, if you like Irish football and/or cultural nostalgia, I also write Bionic Bohs, a blog about following Bohs in the 1970s.

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