Collins, Prendergast meet with Irish abuse victims

January 24, 2011
Archbishop Thomas Collins

Archbishop Thomas Collins

Archbishop Terrence Prendergast

Archbishop Terrence Prendergast

Toronto Archbishop Thomas Collins will meet with abuse victims and lead a penitential service in the course of a two-week visit to the Archdiocese of Cashel and Emly in Ireland.

Collins' apostolic visit to Ireland, which began Jan. 13, was mandated by Pope Benedict's March 19, 2010 pastoral letter to the Catholics of Ireland.

Along with Collins' visit to Cashel and Emly, Ottawa Archbishop Terrence Prendergast has visited the Archdiocese of Tuam.

Collins led a penitential service in the Cathedral of the Assumption in Thurles on Jan. 16 at 3 p.m. Prendergast led a penitential service in Tuam Cathedral on Jan. 4.

All of the apostolic visitors to Ireland will meet with victims, with a particular emphasis on meeting individuals and families.

The apostolic visitors aren't coming to Ireland with a bag full of answers, but "with attentive ears and discerning hearts, to listen to what the Spirit is saying to the local churches we are privileged to visit," said Prendergast in his Jan. 4 homily, quoted in The Irish Catholic.

"We come with the desire to manifest a ministry of encouragement, a zeal for reconciliation, a hope that, as Pope Benedict mentioned in his letter to Ireland, the best of the Irish Church may come to the fore again."