THE sex abuse scandal which has rocked the Irish Roman Catholic Church in Ireland is ongoing with fresh revelations indicating that the present Church Primate Cardinal Sean Brady was present when two abused teenagers were asked to sign silence vows over complaints made against a priest.
The complaints made in 1975 were investigated by Cardinal Brady when secretary to the bishop in Kilmore diocese and, speaking yesterday, the Primate said he had been following his bishop's orders and, at the time, there were no Church guidelines for dealing with such probes.
Child abuse by priests within the Irish Church over a long period of time has caused much anguish and pain not just to the victims but also their wider families.
It has anguished the great mass of Catholics across the island, who are deeply troubled by the damage done to the Church's standing.
The raw wounds that have surfaced with the unfolding personal stories by child abuse victims may never be healed and, inevitably, harsh words are being directed towards the hierarchy.
However, while the level of anger over the widespread abuse is understandable, a man of the integrity of Cardinal Sean Brady must be given the chance to guide the Church to a position where a scandal of this magnitude will never happen again.
Cardinal Brady is a very sincere, humble and compassionate cleric who is clearly pained by the incidence of child abuse within his Church and, if he, as some are suggesting, should be forced to stand down, where does it all end for the Roman Catholic Church in general?