Claims against Co Antrim-born cardinal

Published Sunday, 24 February 2013
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The most senior Catholic churchman in Britain, who is originally from Northern Ireland, has been accused of acting inappropriately.

Claims against Co Antrim-born cardinal
Keith O'Brien was born in Co Antrim and leads Scotland's Catholics. (© Getty)

Cardinal Keith O'Brien was reported to the Vatican by three serving priests and a former priest, according to The Observer newspaper.

He contests the allegations, said to stretch back to the 1980s, and is taking legal advice.

Cardinal O'Brien is the head of the Catholic Church in Scotland. He has been the Archbishop of St Andrews and Edinburgh since 1985.

The 74-year-old, who is due to retire next month, originally comes from Ballycastle in Co Antrim.

The claims emerged just days after Cardinal O'Brien called for the Catholic Church to end its celibacy rule for the priesthood.

The cardinal is also an outspoken opponent of plans to legalise same-sex marriage.

He is the only British cleric able to vote in the upcoming conclave to elect a successor to Pope Benedict XVI following his decision to resign.

He previously said he has not yet decided who should be elected as Pope during the conclave, which is expected to be held next month.

It was reported that Cardinal O'Brien missed Sunday Mass at St Mary's Cathedral in Edinburgh.

No spokesperson was immediately available to comment.

© UTV News
Comments Comments
lucylou in belfast wrote (702 days ago):
DEE IN BANGOR===People who put their faith in the SON OF MAN and not in MAN won't lose their faith.
lorna in limavady wrote (703 days ago):
Big restrictions on this story comments ? YES.
maggie in north west wrote (704 days ago):
UTV why bother to ask for comments and never use them. I make fair comments but you chose to ignore. that is ME FED UP.
lucylou in belfast wrote (704 days ago):
DEE IN BANGOR===It's the actions of SOME in the churche/s that leads some people to lose faith.If you set yourself up to preach then you must be seen to practice WHAT you preach.I am not an advocate of keeping abuse of any kind from within any church quiet to 'save face' If the r c church had been open and honest at the first instance of sexual abuse it would have had the respect of the populace==maintained confidence and sent a signal to others who went on to abuse that the church would not be a safe haven for their depravity.I have no opinion on this cardinals' guilt or innocence.He will have his opportunity to defend himself against the three serving and one former priest who have made allegations.Unfortunately the R C church acted only when their hand was forced hence the loss of faith of some who never learned not to put their faith in MAN but in THE SON OF MAN.
Dee in Bangor wrote (705 days ago):
Controlled media in another religion attack shocker. And the masses lap it up. constant attacks at the church is working and people are losing faith by design. Be careful.
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