On Friday July 8th the Irish Independent issued the following clarification on page 6:
In the edition of the Irish Independent dated 17 June 2016, we printed an article entitled, ‘Maynooth in crisis as president goes on sabbatical’. We have been contacted by Monsignor Hugh Connolly, President of St Patrick’s College Maynooth, who has asked us to clarify that the decision to take a sabbatical is entirely unconnected to the other matters referred to in the article.
Monsignor Connolly has been granted sabbatical leave by the College Trustees, having applied for this leave more than a year ago to enable him to pursue theological studies. This is a standard sabbatical leave taken in accordance with the usual procedures of St. Patrick’s College.
Monsignor Connolly will remain as President until the completion of his statutory term in 2017 and will continue to exercise many of his duties as President during his sabbatical.
We are happy to clarify this and regret if any distress was caused. Link to the clarification can be viewed here
The Irish Catholic Apology and Correction reads as follows:
In an article carried in The Irish Catholic of June 16, 2016, we reported on the President of St Patrick’s College Maynooth, Msgr Hugh Connolly taking sabbatical leave. The article went on to deal with matters entirely unconnected to Msgr Connolly’s leave including controversial allegations recently made about life in the seminary.
Msgr Connolly has been granted sabbatical leave by the college trustees, having applied for this leave more than a year ago, to enable him to pursue theological studies. This is a standard sabbatical leave taken in accordance with the usual procedures of St Patrick’s College. Msgr Connolly will remain as President until the completion of his statutory term in 2017 and he will continue to exercise many of his duties as president during his sabbatical. At the conclusion of his sabbatical he will return to the position he previously occupied as Professor of Moral Theology in St Patrick’s College.
We accept that the article linked Msgr Connolly’s sabbatical leave with the controversial allegations referred to in the same article. This was entirely unintentional and we accept that such an insinuation is entirely unjustified as a matter of fact. We acknowledge Msgr Connolly’s reputation as a senior clergyman and a highly respected academic.
The article has been removed from the internet and The Irish Catholic wishes to apologise unreservedly to Msgr Connolly for the distress caused to him.