Nazareth homes focus of abuse inquiry


Published Monday, 05 January 2015

Some Catholic nuns at children’s homes in Belfast have been described as “sadistic bullies” at the Historical Institutional Abuse Inquiry which resumed on Monday.

The fourth module of the inquiry at Banbridge Courthouse is focusing on the former Nazareth House and Nazareth Lodge, run by the Sisters of Nazareth order of Catholic nuns.

A total of 102 witnesses from the homes have come forward to give their accounts and more than 90 are expected to give evidence.

The atmosphere at the two properties was described as “bleak, harsh and cruel” by alleged victims, a lawyer told the inquiry.

Senior counsel Christine Smith QC quoted one witness: “The nuns were at best indifferent and most often sadistic bullies who spoke with harsh, loud voices in scornful, dismissive tones.”

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