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Retired priest brands Bishop of Dromore appointment ‘disgusting’

A retired priest has expressed his disgust at the selection of former Bishop of Raphoe, Philip Boyce, as interim Bishop of Dromore.

John McAreavey resigned as the Bishop of Dromore last month amid a barrage of criticism about his concelebration of Mass with paedophile priest Father Malachy Finnegan.  78 year old Bishop Boyce was selected by Pope Francis to take on the role of apostolic administrator of Dromore following his resignation.

Speaking on the Nolan Show on Radio Ulster last week, Father Eamon Murray said he was “incensed” by the appointment, branding it “disgusting” following Bishop Boyce’s handling of clerical sex abuse allegations 7 years ago as Bishop of Raphoe in Donegal.  

“I am so annoyed about this, that he has been appointed to Dromore where there has been a huge problem. I think that’s rubbing the salt on the wound,” said the retired priest, who lives in the diocese of Dromore. 

A review into the handling of clerical abuse in the Diocese of Raphoe in 2011 uncovered that Bishop Boyce had attempted to protect the family of paedophile priest Fr Eugene Greene rather than have the cleric removed from the ministry. Greene was jailed for 12 years in 2000 after pleading guilty to 41 sample charges against 26 victims between 1962 and 1985.

At the time of the 2011 review, Bishop Boyce apologised for “poor judgements” in managing the priest, who was accused of “horrific acts of abuse” against children.

 “I don’t want that man in Dromore where I live, and I am a priest. I don’t want him in Dromore,” added Fr Murray.

“I can’t believe this man has been appointed after his tenure in Raphoe.”

A spokesperson for the Dromore diocese said Fr Murray is not a priest in the diocese and is under the jurisdiction of the diocese of Northampton.

“He does not minister for the Diocese of Dromore and does not live in a property owned by the Diocese,” said the spokesperson, adding that any questions in relation to his comments should be forwarded to the diocese of Northampton.