ACP receives response from bishops regarding censured priests
At an ACP meeting last February, a resolution was passed that the ACP would request the Irish Bishops Conference to meet with the priests who have been silenced by the Vatican, with a view to finding a better way to handle these situations within the Church. A signature campaign followed on this website, and a letter containing the resolution and 1,237 ACP signatures was sent to the bishops in late April.
The following has just been received in reply:
Dear Father Hoban,
I write to reply to your letter of 29 April 2013 which, along with the
attached list of signatures, was circulated to all members of the Episcopal
Conference at the recent Bishops’ meeting.
With regard to the matters raised in your letter, the Episcopal Conference
is unaware of the particulars of any individual case. When issues are raised
about the doctrinal content of a priest’s writings, the usual procedure is
for the priest’s bishop or religious superior to be involved in attempting
to resolve any difficulties. In cases relating to priests who are members
of religious orders / missionary societies, each order/society, as well as
having a provincialate, has its own generalate which may also be aware of
The Episcopal Conference has noted that in such sensitive matters, the
legitimate autonomy of bishops and religious orders / missionary societies
should be respected and the normal channels for addressing these matters
should be pursued.