An Irish priest who openly supported Irish Prime minister Enda Kenny’s critique of the Vatican over the sex abuse scandal in Ireland is related to a strategist in Kenny’s party, according to the Sunday Independent.
Fr. Tony Flannery, who is a brother of Fine Gael strategist Frank Flannery, was a big supporter of Kenny’s negative view of the Vatican’s handling of the sex abuse scandals that rocked Ireland.
"I was happy with the Taoiseach's statement . . . Many of us priests are frustrated with the way the Vatican conducts its business," said Flannery of Kenny’s message to Rome.
The priest was silenced by the Congregation of the Doctrine of the Faith, and he was forbidden from talking to the press, from writing in Redemptorist Order’s Reality magazine and from contributing to the Association of Irish Priests' website.
The head of the Redemptorist Order, Fr. Adrian Egan, told the Sunday Independent that the media ban on Flannery was due to a number of things.
"It's about his involvement in the Association of Irish Priests, the things he might have preached about, that many of us have preached about -- maybe the connection through his brother to Enda Kenny. I imagine that Tony had no part in that (speech)," Fr Egan said, according to the Independent.
Fr. Flannery is known for his liberal opinions. He is opposed to the Church’s ban on artificial birth control and supports the ordination of women.
Taoiseach Enda Kenny's speech on clerical abuse and the Vatican: