This items appears on the Independent Catholic News website (here)
Irish broadcasters RTE have apologised without reservation for false accusing a missionary in Kenya of raping a woman.In a statement, the Irish Missionary Union has welcomed the fact that RTE “has settled the defamation against it and has apologised unreservedly for the defamation inflicted on Fr Kevin Reynolds MHM, a Mill Hill Missionary whom it falsely accused of raping a woman in Kenya.”
The IMU says in a statement:
“We acknowledge the suffering that Fr Kevin has had to endure through this ordeal. The courage of Fr Kevin and the dignity with which he has borne this suffering in recent months is to be commended. We are conscious at this time of the suffering of those who are living with the consequences of abuse. We are conscious too of the suffering experienced by any individual against whom a false allegation of abuse has been made. Their suffering and that of Fr Kevin in recent months deserve our consideration, our compassion and an appropriate response.
Apart from the apology for the defamation and character assassination of Fr Kevin Reynolds, the Irish Missionary Union believe that RTE needs to inform the Irish public who support it through licence fees about:
1. Why it decided to broadcast the false allegation when its reporter had been told that the alleged abuser would undergo a paternity test to prove his innocence?
2. Why it chose to confront the priest in public view on church premises after Mass on a First Communion day?
3. The legal advice it was given before it broadcast the false allegation?
4. What means it used to try to verify the allegation made by the person who made the complaint in Africa?
5. What disciplinary action has or will be taken against those responsible?
In addition, RTE needs to inform the Irish public what controls it has now put in place to ensure that such a defamation and character assassination cannot be repeated?
These questions must be answered by the public service broadcaster which rightly, sees it as its duty to seek answers from individuals and institutions in relation to issues that are ‘in the public interest’. The broadcasting of the defamation against Fr Reynolds is a public interest matter too.
The Broadcasting Authority of Ireland must insist that these questions are answered fully and adequately.”
For more information on the Irish Missionary Union see: http://www.imu.ie
You can read more about Father Reynold’s case here