Today FM

One of Fr Brendan Smyth’s victims is not very impressed with Cardinal Sean Brady’s expressions of regret about his role in failing to prevent Smyth’s abuse.

The former Catholic Primate of All Ireland, Sean Brady, has expressed his horror and offered an unreserved apology to all those affected as a result of the crimes of Fr Brendan Smyth. Brady received sharp criticism after it emerged he had been meetings where two teenage victims of Smyth were sworn to secrecy in 1975.

Their evidence was never handed over to police. Smyth continued abusing children before the authorities eventually caught up with him and he was jailed in 1994. He died in prison in 1997. Brady said:

“There was a shroud of secrecy and confidentiality with a view not to destroying the good name of the church. To offset that, the scandal was kept a secret — very, very secret. Everybody involved would be bound to secrecy too.” The evidence from Smyth’s victims was never handed over to police, allowing the west Belfast churchman to continue abusing children before he was finally jailed in 1994.

One of Smyth’s victims Helen McGonigle spoke to Matt from her home in Connecticut. Helen was just six years old when Smyth first abused her. Now a successful attorney in Connecticut, she says Smyth destroyed her family. She blames Smyth for the death of her sister and brother and the demise of her mother.

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