Bishop due in Laois parish where paedophile priest Malachy Finegan was a curate on St Patrick's Day

Conor Ganly

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Conor Ganly

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Notorious paedophile priest was a curate in Laois parish

Fr Malachy Finegan

A senior catholic Bishop will travel to Rosenallis in Laois on St Patrick's day in the wake of the news that the notorious paedophile priest, the late Fr Malachy Finegan, was attached to the parish.

Kildare and Leiglin Diocesean spokesman Fr Micheál Murphy, confirmed that the late Fr. Malachy Finegan ministered in the diocese of Kildare & Leighlin as curate in Rosenallis from 1953 to 1956.  

He said the diocese of Kildare and Leighlin has "no knowledge or record of any complaint or allegation concerning Fr Finegan". 

Fr Murhpy, who is Parish Priest of Mountmellick Parish in Laois, said Bishop Denis Nulty will preside at the 11am Mass in Rosenallis on St. Patrick's Day.

Fr Murphy said the Bishop encourages anyone with concerns regarding the safety of children to contact, without delay, the Diocesan Designated Liaison Person, the Child and Family Agency - Tusla, the Gardai.

He also clarified that the reference to an assignment in Mountmellick Kildare and Leighlin Diocese between 1973 - 1976 on the Clonduff Parish History Webpage was an error.

Fr Finegan is known by his own northern Diocese of Dromore in to have sexually abused minors in a secondary school and the community as far back as early 1970s.

Fr Finnegan, who died in 2002, abused boys at St Colman's College in Newry, where he taught from 1967 to 1976 and its president until 1987.

He was Parish Priest of Clonduff Parish in Co Down but retired in September 1995.

Dr John McAreavey resigned as Bishop of Dromore this month over the scandal, details of which were revealed recenlty by BBC Northern Ireland's Spotlight in a programme called Buried Secrets.

Catholic Bishops in Ireland have said they will fully cooperate with any statutory inquiry into clerical child sexual abuse, following former President Mary McAleese's call for a public inquiry into the Church's response to child abuse allegations against Fr Finegan.

Mrs McAleese made the appeal after revealing on RTÉ described the abuse that her brother suffered as a student at St Colman's College in Newry at the hands of Fr Finegan as "serious, physical and sadistic", though not sexual.

WATCH BBC interview with one of his victims.