Bishop tells mass-goers parish priest on leave over child sex allegations
Fr Owen Collins, parish priest of Drumgoon, Cootehill, County Cavan, Ireland, “voluntarily agreed to take administrative leave”.
While this is dreadful news, there is also some good signs coming out of this. That the Bishop acted quickly and the priest took leave voluntarily, indicates a greatly improved attitude by the Catholic Church in dealing with allegations of child sexual abuse. It was far too long coming but it is good to see, at least in this one case.
|Fr Owen Collins|
The announcement in relation to Fr Owen Collins, parish priest of Drumgoon, Cootehill, Co Cavan, was made yesterday in a statement from the Bishop of Kilmore, Bishop Leo O’Reilly, which was read at all Masses in the parish.
The bishop’s statement said, “I deeply regret to inform you that I have received a complaint against your parish priest. He has, in accordance with child safeguarding procedures, voluntarily agreed to take administrative leave whilst an investigation takes place.
“It is important to stress that the priest enjoys the right to the presumption of innocence whilst these matters are being investigated.
“From experience, I am aware that investigations of this nature can take a considerable time to complete. Pending the outcome of the investigation I have appointed Fr Paul Casey as acting parish priest of this parish.”