Church Under Investigation by the Vatican for “Sex Party” Claims

Church Under Investigation by the Vatican for “Sex Party” Claims

The Vatican is looking into claims that a British cathedral had a “sex party” amid the pandemic lockdown.

The Catholic Church is looking into claims that a priest at St. Mary’s Cathedral in Newcastle, U.K., took parishioners to his church-attached residence. According to the Guardian, the accusations arise from another probe into the resignation of Robert Byrne, Bishop of Hexham and Newcastle.

Worshippers from the congregation reported church higher-ups that Father Michael McCoy, the cathedral’s dean, had asked them to attend a party despite the fact that such gatherings were banned.

“A number of complaints were made by individuals within the diocese after information came to light about a sex party taking place in the priests’ living quarters attached to Newcastle Cathedral,” a diocesan source told the Sunday Times.

The same priest supposedly behind the party was under investigation for child sex abuse.

According to the Guardian, the same priest committed suicide in April 2021 after learning that he was being investigated by local authorities for child sexual abuse.

McCoy was appointed to the cathedral by Byrne in 2019. According to the source, Byrne was not suggested as being at the party. In December, he resigned from his position. He informed church members that his office “has become too great a burden.”

“My own discernment has caused me to recognize that I now feel unable to continue serving the people of the diocese in the way that I would wish,” he told worshippers.

The Catholic Safeguarding Standards Agency, an independent commission established in 2019 to investigate structures and arrangements to avoid possible harm, is now investigating the cathedral belongs.

“The scope of the investigatory work will cover any reported abuses, alleged abuses, safeguarding concerns and the culture of safeguarding in the diocese as a whole,” said Steve Ashley, the group’s chief executive officer.

“There should be no doubt that we will leave no stone unturned when it comes to keeping people safe, and this includes investigating the safeguarding culture in Hexham and Newcastle,” said Nazir Afzal, chair of the CSSA and former chief prosecutor of the northwest of England.

The local diocese responded by saying it would “continue to work productively and swiftly with both organizations, learning where it needs to, not from rumors and misinformation, but from the facts and evidence provided.”

 

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