EDINBURGH (UNITED KINGDOM)
Daily Record [Glasgow, Scotland]
September 5, 2021
By Gordon Blackstock
A former priest who says he was abused by shamed Cardinal O’Brien has called for a secret Vatican report into the allegations to be released.
Brian Devlin, 61, was one of four priests who accused the Archbishop of St Andrews and Edinburgh of sexual misconduct in 2013.
The scandal saw the disgraced cardinal – one of the most senior Catholic clerics in the UK – quit and apologise.
In the aftermath, the Vatican ordered its own internal probe, carried out by Bishop Charles Scicluna.
The bishop – who has gone on to become the Archbishop of Malta – was one of the Vatican’s best known sex abuse investigators.
His team travelled to Scotland in 2014 and carried out interviews as part of their 12-month long investigation into O’Brien’s conduct.
But details of the secret probe – which is believed to have been shown to the Pope – have never been revealed.
Brian, who has written a book called Cardinal Sin about his role in O’Brien’s downfall, has called for the Vatican to finally release the report.
He said: “Somewhere in the bowels of the Vatican there exists a report on the investigation Bishop Charles Scicluna wrote about former cardinal Keith O’Brien’s predatory behaviour.
“I think the Christian thing to do would be for me to get a copy of that report – at least the bits that refer to me.
“Not to do so is further evidence of the Church’s abuse of power.”
Brian, who lives in the Black Isle, has waived his right to anonymity to write Cardinal Sin. The book calls for urgent reform of the Catholic Church.
The former priest – who went on to marry and work in PR for the NHS after leaving the priesthood in 1986 – has also written to bishops in Scotland’s eight dioceses.
He added: “O’Brien’s downfall was a huge global story, which I thought would change the church.
“It didn’t. Nothing has changed.”
Brian said he was inappropriately touched many times by O’Brien while studying to become a priest at Drygrange seminary, near Melrose, in the 80s.
After O’Brien was made cardinal in 1985, Brian quit, calling O’Brien a “fraud”.
In 2013, he found other priests who claimed to have been abused by O’Brien before they went public with their claims.
O’Brien died in 2018, aged 80.
The Vatican did not respond to a request for comment.