CARDINAL Keith O'Brien admitted on Sunday that his "sexual
conduct" had "fallen below the standards expected of me".
Cardinal O'Brien, the former Archbishop of St Andrews &
Edinburgh, stood down last Monday after allegations of
"inappropriate" acts were published in The Observer (
News, 1 March).
In a statement published by the Scottish Catholic Media Office
on Sunday, Cardinal O'Brien said: "In recent days certain
allegations which have been made against me have become public.
Initially, their anonymous and non-specific nature led me to
"However, I wish to take this opportunity to admit that there
have been times that my sexual conduct has fallen below the
standards expected of me as a priest, archbishop and cardinal.
"To those I have offended, I apologise and ask forgiveness. To
the Catholic Church and people of Scotland, I also apologise. I
will now spend the rest of my life in retirement. I will play no
further part in the public life of the Catholic Church in
The BBC reported on Monday the Vatican would carry out a sexual
misconduct inquiry. It was "not likely to begin until after a new
Pope is chosen", it said.
Pope Benedict XVI has appointed the Archbishop of Glasgow, the
Most Revd Philip Tartaglia, Apostolic Administrator of the
Archdiocese of St Andrews and Edinburgh, it was announced last
On Sunday, The Observer published an interview with a
former priest who, along with three serving priests, reported
allegations about Cardinal O'Brien's behaviour to the Vatican. The
former priest said: "For me, this is about integrity. I thought it
was best to let the men and women who put their hard-earned cash in
the plate every Sunday know what has been happening. If you pay
into something you have a right, but also a duty, to know what you
are paying for."