A statement by the Bishop of Waterford and Lismore, Dr William Lee, concerning the Judge Murphy Report into the Archdiocese of Dublin, was read out at all Masses throughout the diocese last weekend.
In the statement, Bishop Lee expressed his deep shame at the pain and suffering inflicted on innocent victims. He said: “My immediate thoughts and prayers are with those whose stories of dreadful abuse have been told and towards whom responses, in the past, are shown to have been most inadequate. I offer my profound regrets and apologies to those who have suffered in this way. I am deeply sorry.”
“There is nothing more painful, more shocking than the betrayal of a child’s trust and the destruction of a child’s innocence. This is particularly devastating when it is done by someone who is called to be a minister of God’s loving care. Instead of being respected and protected by people whom they trusted, children were used and damaged by priests. I again offer my profound regrets and apologies to those who have suffered in this way. I am deeply sorry”, said Bishop Lee.
He went on to say that he was also saddened that the people of the diocese, who had been so faithful to the Church, had been hurt and angered by priests who had abused children and by the Church’s failure to measure up to its responsibilities in its care of survivors of child abuse.