Belfast Telegraph

Mary McAleese speaks out for censured priests

Former Irish President Mary McAleese has called on the Vatican’s Irish envoy to show more leniency to priests who speak out on controversial issues.

Mrs McAleese’s appeal follows the reprimanding of five Irish priests who voiced liberal views on issues like celibacy, women priests, homosexuality, among other key topics.

Following a meeting between Mrs McAleese and the Papal Nuncio Archbishop Charles Brown, the cleric passed responsibility from the Vatican to the individual religious orders, saying: “The question of the mission or apostate exercised by individual members of the religious congregation belongs to the religious congregations themselves.”

Mrs McAleese’s comments also follow the censuring of Father Brian D’Arcy, whose column in the Sunday World is vetted by the church, who said: “In these difficult times it is the price one has to pay when one is committed to the truth.”

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