Belfast Telegraph

Second abuse victim wants tribute to bishop Francis Brooks removed

Bishop Francis Brooks
Bishop Francis Brooks
Finegan victim Sean Faloon
Ralph Hewitt

By Ralph Hewitt

Another victim of paedophile priest Malachy Finegan has called for the removal of a tribute to the late Bishop Francis Brooks, this time in Warrenpoint.

In February 2018 it was revealed that Fr Finegan had abused a number of boys for over 20 years at St Colman's College, Newry.

In March 2018, Finegan's victims requested the removal of a mosaic made in tribute to Bishop Brooks in Newry Cathedral.

But it wasn't until earlier this month that they received a reply from the Diocese of Dromore's solicitors, which read: "We are to meet with our client shortly and will return to you fully in regard to the issues raised."

Phoenix Law solicitor Claire McKeegan also confirmed to the Belfast Telegraph that another victim of Finegan has requested the removal of a tribute to the bishop - from the Mary Queen of Peace Church in Warrenpoint.

Finegan victim Sean Faloon suffered at the priest's hands for eight years from 1989.

He was just 10 years old when the abuse began.

Mr Faloon claims that Bishop Brooks broke an agreement they made when he told him of Finegan's crimes in the late Nineties.

Mr Faloon said that Bishop Brooks agreed to stop Finegan officiating Mass when he told him of his abuse, but broke that agreement just two years later, and accused him of protecting the paedophile priest more than children.

Describing the mosaic to Bishop Brooks as a "moral matter and not a legal matter", Mr Faloon has called on Archbisop Eamon Martin - the current apostolic administrator of the Diocese of Dromore - to remove it.

The Diocese of Dromore was asked if the tributes to Bishop Brooks would be removed and how many victims of Finegan have stepped forward.

However, a spokesperson said they did not wish to publicly comment on particular communications with victims, adding: "The Diocese of Dromore is committed to working with victims and their representatives to establish a process for addressing the concerns of all victims of abuse."

Belfast Telegraph


From Belfast Telegraph