The leader of the Roman Catholic Church in Ireland has said he will only resign if asked by the Pope amid allegations he witnessed teenage abuse victims take vows of silence over a paedophile.
Cardinal Sean Brady, the Primate of All Ireland, admitted that he attended meetings in 1975 when two teenage boys signed oaths of silence while testifying in a Church inquiry against Father Brendan Smyth.
The priest was later uncovered as the most notorious child abuser in the Irish Catholic Church, carrying out more than 90 sexual assaults against 40 youngsters in a 20-year period.
Survivors’ groups say the revelations show the cardinal colluded in the cover up of Smyth’s crimes – which, they say, allowed the cleric to continue offending – and say he must quit immediately.
Cardinal Brady has refused to go, however, because he said he acted promptly against Smyth but did not have the authority to turn him into the Gardai.