The Christian Brothers congregation has today announced a €161 million package of measures as reparation for abuses of the past.
The submission of the package to the Government last Monday comes in the wake of the publication of the Report of the Commission to Inquire into Child Abuse last May.
In a statement, the Christian Brothers said the contribution comprises a donation of €30 million to a Government trust in addition to €4 million for counselling services.
The plan also entails the transfer of school playing fields – which the congregation values at €127 million – into the joint ownership of Government and the Edmund Rice Schools Trust (ERST).
The Christian Brothers said these measures come after prior contributions of €30 million, bringing total contributions since 1996 to over €190 million.
The congregation has also committed providing a further €8 million funding to ERST over the five years to 2015.
“The range of incremental measures outlined above follow the Christian Brothers’ acceptance, shame and sorrow at the findings of the Ryan Report. We understand and regret that nothing we say or do can turn back the clock for those affected by abuse,” the congregation’s statement said.
“As Christian Brothers we will continue to reflect on many of the deeper issues arising from the Report of the Commission to Inquire into Child Abuse. The decisions we have taken to recognise our moral obligation to survivors of abuse and to the people of Ireland will be one sign of our willingness to collaborate fully in creating a new reality for the care of children in Ireland.”
The congregation has submitted to the Government a report of its resources, commitments and liabilities. This is available at http://www.christianbrothers.eu
The move comes a day before the publication of a separate investigation exposing child sex abuse by Catholic priests in the Dublin Archdiocese.
The long-running Commission of Inquiry into the Dublin Archdiocese has examined allegations against a sample 46 priests.The 700-page report will be censored in parts so as not to prejudice ongoing or potential criminal cases.
The Christian Brothers bowed to intense pressure in the weeks after the Ryan Report’s publication last May and agreed to look for a possible new deal to make amends to its victims.
The report exposed the physically and psychologically abusive regimes operated by religious orders in church and state-run institutions.
Additional reporting PA