Friday, December 28, 2012

Sex-abuse clergy still get charity donations

RELIGIOUS orders that owe the State millions in reparations for child sex abuse continue to receive hundreds of thousands of euro in charitable donations.

A survey conducted by the Irish Independent has revealed how organisations shamed by sexual abuse in the Catholic Church have continued to receive support.

All are eligible to claim tax relief because their religious status guarantees official charitable recognition.

Under the 2002 indemnity agreement, the orders were asked to pay €128m to the State.

However, following the publication of the Ryan Report, they were asked to make further substantial contributions in reparation for abuse.

They offered €110m in cash but to date just €39m has been received by the State.

Of the 18 orders that entered the 2002 scheme, 15 failed to provide details of the charitable donations they have received, while three replied with details.

The Oblates of Mary Immaculate reported the most in donations received. A spokesperson said the order raised around €150,000 a year.

Most of the money was raised through sales of work, with the amount of money collected at the church gate dropping.

A spokesman said the order was involved in overseas missionary work as well as working on poverty and drugs programmes in the Darndale and Inchicore areas of Dublin.

The Ryan Report found that there was "extreme" physical abuse of boys in the Daingean Reformatory, Co Offaly, which was managed by the order.

The De La Salle Brothers reported the smallest amount in donations of those orders that responded. A spokesman said there had been one donation of €12,000 earlier this year.

"This is the first and only donation we have received over many years," he said.

A number of brothers from the order have been investigated for child sex abuse.

The Rosminian Order reported that it received €100,000 for foreign missions in 2011 but that this will fall to about €66,000 this year.

It said that a total of €16,200 was raised for the domestic organisation in the past five years, with €8,000 being the largest single donation and €234 the smallest.


A number of Rosminian institutions were investigated in the Ryan Report. 

The report found that punishment was abusive and at times brutal at the Cork-based St Patrick's Industrial School run by the Rosminians.

Seven sex abusers worked at the school from 1936 to 1968. The report found that the order accepted abuse had happened in its institutions and sought to understand it.

A spokesperson for the Sisters of Charity said the order was not in a position to provide the information. 

Of all of the orders investigated by the commission, the Sisters of Charity was the largest provider in the State with 26 industrial schools.

The report found that girls in the schools endured frequent assaults and humiliation.