Dublin Archbishop Diarmuid Martin

The Archbishop of Dublin Diarmuid Martin is denying asking for the resignation of two axillary bishops this week.

Responding to Irish television host's suggestion that the Bishop's authority had been undermined by the pope who allegedly this week rejected the offer of resignation from auxiliary bishops Eamonn Walsh and Ray Field, Martin said “I asked for accountability, and I believe that is something . . . I haven’t always been successful in doing that,."

Martin said accountability was when people said “this is the level of my responsibility . . . I stand over that and I am not just going to say sit back and say nothing’’. Asked if the pope had second-guessed him, Dr Martin replied: “No. I know what the pope thinks.’’

In November 2009, there were calls for Field and Walsh to resign from their post in the wake of the publication of the Murphy Report.

On Christmas Eve 2009 at Midnight Mass, it was announced that Field and fellow bishop Eamonn Walsh had resigned.

In their joint resignation speech they said that: "evening informed Archbishop Diarmuid Martin that we are offering our resignation to His Holiness, Pope Benedict XVI, as Auxiliary Bishops to the Archbishop of Dublin.

"As we celebrate the Feast of Christmas, the Birth of our Saviour, the Prince of Peace, it is our hope that our action may help to bring the peace and reconciliation of Jesus Christ to the victims/survivors of child sexual abuse.

"We again apologise to them. Our thoughts and prayers are with those who have so bravely spoken out and those who continue to suffer in silence."

On 11 August, 2010 it was announced that Pope Benedict XVI did not accept Bishop Field's resignation and would return to ministry within the archdiocese along with Bishop Eamonn Walsh.