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In 2014  Marie Collins was appointed as one of two survivors of clergy sex abuse to serve on Pope Francis’ Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors. She resigned from that position this week and wrote to explain why.

Yesterday news broke of the findings of aCommission of Investigation  investigating ,  the deaths of children in ‘care’at  the former Bon Secours home in Tuam, and their burial. That Commssion was established because of the work  which Catherine Corless, a local amateur historian, carried out in face of obstruction from the Congregation of Bon Secours and the local authority.

Both news stories are shocking and disturbing in what they have to say about events past and present. There is doubtless much else we ought to take into account when considering what has happened and is happening: two wrongs do not make a right.

But again and again what is apparent in these stories is a reluctance on the part of the ‘authorities’ to put the interests of victims first and themselves last. What damage is still done; and what hurt is still caused.

  • Let us pray for the victims of abuse, and all those who seek to help them learn to trust in the healing and mercy of God .
  • And let us give thanks for these two determined and principled women, and all who work for truth and justice.

Photograph of the shrine erected in memory of the up to 800 children allegedly buried at the site of the former home. Photograph: Paul Faith/AFP/Getty Images (found at https://www.theguardian.com/world/2017/mar/03/mass-grave-of-babies-and-children-found-at-tuam-orphanage-in-ireland#img-2)

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