The leader of Ireland's four million Catholics said yesterday he wouldn't resign after a BBC documentary accused him of helping to cover up 1970s child abuse committed by a pedophile priest who went on to assault scores of other children for decades, reports AP in a story published by The Sydney Morning Herald.
Cardinal Sean Brady said the documentary exaggerated his role in his 1975 interviews of two teenage boys abused by Brendan Smyth. He said he gave his report to his bishop, who in turn had responsibility to tell Smyth's religious order leaders.
They, not he, had the power to act and failed to do so, he said.
"I feel betrayed that those who had the authority in the church to stop Brendan Smyth failed to act on the evidence I gave them. However, I also accept that I was part of an unhelpful culture of deference and silence in society, and the church, which thankfully is now a thing of the past," Brady said.
Brady's statement did not address why nobody in the church thought to call the police. Nor did not mention that he, as the canon lawyer in the two interviews, had both boys sign oaths of secrecy promising not to tell anyone outside the church of the abuse they had suffered.
He previously has argued that the oaths were designed to protect the rights of the children, not the reputation of the church.
FULL STORY Irish cardinal won't quit over 'cover-up' (SMH)