Challenging Abuse of Power in the Catholic Church by Brian Devlin

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NOTICE: A book that explores the abuse of power in the Roman Catholic Church was written by a longtime justice activist.

Former priest Brian Devlin, from Black Isle, wrote Cardinal Sin: Challenging Power Abuse in the Catholic Church, exploring his personal, complex and often disturbing relationship between himself and the church hierarchy.

Mr Devlin has been at the forefront of the fight against injustice throughout his career – from treating HIV-positive patients in the 1980s to providing adequate care in the rural Highlands to making to be among those who forced the NHS Highland to face harassment. saga.

His book is thoughtful and very personal, it was designed to be read in one or two sessions. This makes us stop thinking “poor soul”, what can we do to change that?

The author clearly wants his book to be a source of healing for the many people who have been rejected by the church.

To these ends, Mr. Devlin offers a sense of vision to refocus the Roman Catholic Church and its hierarchical structure.

He recounts his experiences as a boy, from Fife, who overcame deafness to enter a seminary to become a trainee priest, studying in Scotland.

He reflects on the fact that he put his faith in a power structure and entered a celibate life as a simple boy with no experience of the world and of sex.

What he found was a privileged life, but unprotected from predatory male behavior.

Mr. Devlin details as normal practice the “healing” he underwent, ultimately naming his former spiritual advisor and mentor, and it would be fair to say, a close personal friend, Cardinal Keith O’Brien, as the author .

O’Brien died in 2018.

Cardinal sin.

Mr Devlin accuses O’Brien – a daring step in itself – of detailing just one life-changing incident and its aftermath.

His voice gave voice to others.

Mr. Devlin’s words are powerful and hurtful, but he doesn’t hesitate to tell his story.

Mr Devlin felt speechless for decades, it was when he spoke on social media that he and many other men showed up to talk about what had happened.

What prevailed could never have been predicted – but exposed the Roman Catholic Church, for which it has since apologized. But no one was censored at the time, nor fired.

O’Brien retired and subsequently died a much diminished man – but the church never stripped him of his high office. Something that bothers the author.

Yet it was in the 1980s, after only a few months of ministry, that Mr. Devlin felt compelled to leave his own call to ministry in the Roman Catholic Church when O’Brien was appointed Archbishop – like somebody else. ‘one who would have significant control over his life and voice.

Mr Devlin takes an unfailing look at his shocking experience – not for a story that calls for sympathy – but a story that cries out for healing and reconciliation in the church and in the community at large.

Without this understanding and recognition, Mr. Devlin portrays a very difficult future for the Roman Catholic Church.

When asked why he wrote the book and if he would fear the consequences, he replied to the Courier: “It was not a choice for me to write the book.

“We were a voiceless community of faithful men who were forced to live a lie.

“There is no room for silence when there is injustice – but there is a place for reconciliation.”

Cardinal Sin is available in bookstores and online, or from the author.

READ: Management of new £ 5.5million Black Isle care home sets out plans to integrate into community


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