Ireland's Gaelic Athletic Association (GAA) has claimed it was never informed by the Missionaries of the Sacred Heart of complaints of sexual abuse lodged against one of its Cork county selectors.
It has emerged that the selector - Father Donncha Mac Carthaigh - continued to work for the organization for 11 years after the initial complaint was made against him.
Mac Carthaigh, a former principal of Colaiste an Chroi Naofa in Carrignavar, County Cork, was a member of the Cork county selection team and management from the late 1970s until 1997. By 1986 the first of an eventual seven child sex abuse complaints had been lodged with the order against him.
A Cork County GAA Board spokesman told the Irish Examiner: 'Father Donncha Mac Carthaigh was a member of team managements of Cork GAA minor (under 18) and under 16 age group teams in various years from 1979 to 1997. Throughout that time we were not made aware of any concerns regarding Fr Mac Carthaigh by any statutory authority or by his employers or order.'
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Father Mac Carthaigh stepped down as principal of the school in Carrignavar, County Cork after the initial complaint was lodged in the late 1980's. Then in 1996 he was put on restricted ministry. In 2010 his former order applied to the Holy See to have him laicised.
A second former boarder from the school at Carrignavar revealed to the press this week that he had received an out-of-court settlement from the Missionaries of the Sacred Heart in 2009 after he lodged a civil case against Father Mac Carthaigh. The West Cork man who attended the school from 1975 to 1976, complained to the order of being 'repeatedly raped' by the teacher.
In response to the recent revelations the GAA told the press that 'at no time has anybody made a complaint to us regarding Father Mac Carthaigh’s role with any of the minor and under 16 teams or in any other sphere.' The Sacred Heart Missionaries gave no comment to the press.