I got the following letter from the Council of Priests in Killala. It is significant in that, while I have had lots of support at ground level in the Church, this is the first word from an ‘official’ source. I am very grateful to the Killala Council of Priests, which, of course, includes the bishop.
On behalf of the priests of the Diocese of Killala I write this letter to assure you of our support for you, and to let you know that you are very much in our thoughts and prayers.
I would also like to gratefully acknowledge your contribution to the development of faith in our diocese through the preaching of Missions in our parishes over the last forty years and for making yourself available to direct our Diocesan Priests Retreat.
While your contribution to the life of the Church in Ireland is well documented, it is important for us to record our sincere appreciation for your committment to breaking the Word of God for people and priests and in so doing, helping all to encounter the love and compassion of Christ.
It is our most earnest wish that you will be enabled to return to this ministry at the earliest opportunity.
In the meantime please know that you have the support, prayers and solidarity of the priests of the Diocese of Killala.