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This Is The Memory

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Today is the 25th. anniversary of my own mother’s death – she is buried in a graveyard in Moneenroe in Castlecomer. Her headstone states that Mary O’Connor (aged 48) lies here.

I have very few memories of her and the last time I was with her was 1955 when she left Ireland, my father and her children, and went to England and re-married and had 10 more children. On occasion she returned to Moneenroe to her mother and brother but these visits were furtive as she was subject to arrest for bigamy, and breaking a solemn pledge.

For, you see, my mother was once in a Magdalen Asylum. In this Magdalen Asylum she gave birth to my older brother (Bunty) and to get out of the Magdalen Asylum she had to pledge to marry my father, also a sum of money had to be paid.

My father was NOT the father of Bunty, and my father was 15 years older than my mother – also both of them were close blood relatives and special permission had be applied for in order for the marriage to go ahead. Her mother also paid 100 pounds to the nuns in the Magdalen Asylum to further secure her release.

So my mother was released into a forced marriage, to a man years older than her and a very close relative to boot and 100 pounds was paid to for the privilege. My mother produced 3 more children (my older sister, myself and my younger brother) in a very short time. But such an “arrangement” was bound to fail and my mother did leave us and went to England where she had some kind of a life. Of her 10 children one of them became a Cancer specialist – so it seems her mothering skills were put to good use. Of course the 3 children of the marriage were all incarcerated into various detention centres, but Bunty who was born in the Magdalen Asylum was not touched as our mother’s family prevented it and he continued to live with his Granny.

During my time in those places the only information I received from the nuns about my mother was that she was dead – basically that I was an orphan – and that my mother was a tramp and no good to anyone. That she was a wicked woman who was burning in the fires of hell where she would remain for eternity. Yes that’s what Irish nuns used to tell children about their mothers.

Although my mother was buried in August 1980 she died a long long time before that – for you see I BELIEVED the nuns – she was dead to me when I was in those places. The tragedy, to me, is that this denigration of my mother by the nuns prevented me from ever seeking her or her family out. They made me feel ashamed of my mother and this shame has haunted me. And when people talk about forgiveness and moving on they are really asking us, asking me, to forget.

I will not forget and I will not forgive.

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About theknitter

  • meagn

    as a social care student in ireland i am only now learning of the magdalen asylums. i am very discusted with the whole matter and i wish to take this opportunity to say well done to all of the sufferes who had to engage in such terrible upbringing conditions. i would like to compliment you all on your bravery, especially to those who told of their terrible heartbreaking stories. i wish you all a better life in the years to come

  • Fanny

    I’m a french girl who have bought kathy’s story during my late ship in Ireland. As my english isn’t very good, I havn’t finished it yet, but it is a really intersting story, and magdalen laundries are dreadfull… But I would like to know : is there a website or an email to join Kathy O’Beirne? Because I’d really like to speak to her…. If you know, thanks to answer me
    And anyway, congratulations for your article, that’s really interesting and … (I can’t find the words!!!)

  • Hi Fanny

    I’m not sure if Kathy has an email address or a website. I did a few searches on Google for information but with no luck.

    There are more comprehensive sites dealing with the Magdalen Laundries and you might find the information there:


    http://www.magdalenelaundries.com/links.htm <--- this one has a link to a discussion group. I suppose as a last resort you could email the book publisher ..... ! Thank you also for the praise for my article Best Wishes Andrew

  • theresa

    your article was very good the suffering of these women and children should be brought into the public arena,i to would like to know how to get in touch with kathy o’beirne amd let her know what shes doing is trully great,in speaking out against such a holy institution takes emence courage,and just to say keep it up ,as she speaks for hundreads of abused people.

  • Hi Theresa

    Kathy certainly raised the lid on these hell-holes. Not an easy thing to do in a country where the catholic church STILL has influence.

    I’m not sure if Kathy has an email address maybe her publisher …. mainstream

    Best Wishes


  • kellie

    just finished reading kathy’s story and what a story!my heart goes out to her and her friends.glad to see she is still fighting for justice and i hope you get it kathy.would be nice for readers to be able to contact so maybe a new website/email address?xx

  • Hi Kellie

    Kathy’s books are an indictment of Ireland’s religious orders who are still in denial. She is the honest voice of so many.

    It’s very hard to contact her and I’d love to have some contact Email of hers where we could all talk with her.



  • Katie

    Hi everyone, i have recently read Kathy’s book “Don’t ever tell” and to be honest i would have thought that it was happening in the darak ages, not now!! i am outraged that although the laundries are now closed, these women are not free! Also, America and my home country, the UK are very quick to join in with fighting n Iraq and now Lebenon but nobody culd help these poor girls and women. It makes me sick to my stomach that peopl can just turn a blind eye to this evilness.
    on a lighter note i would like to say that i am overwhelmed with all the messages and stories i am reading and hearing. These people are truly amazing for getting through what they have and still fighting fit, i would love to get involved although i feel i would be more of an inconvinience than help 🙁 fantastic work !!!

  • Terence

    I could not believe my eyes when I started to read ‘Don’t Ever Tell’… I have only read the first chapter and felt so sick that a little girl had to go through some horrible experiences and awww bless Teddy for keeping Kathy warm during those dreadful evenings…I felt so sorry that no one was able to protect her or her family from a cruel bullying father…I have to say that I believe Kathy more than the nuns as they are dreadful people…So, I have to say ‘well done’ to Kathy for being so brave to bring this horrible experience and open our eyes of what had been happening in a so called ‘heaven with God loving us’…Ugh to that….I would personally love to meet Kathy and say a ‘BIG THANKS’ for telling us her and other people’s stories…

  • I to have just finished “Kathy’s Story” which had me in tears and i am no serching the net looking for more info. As for the nuns who say that she was never there how could anyone think something like that up ? That is a horrible life for a child and i hope and pray that no one EVER has to go though something like that again as we are now in 2006. I wish kathy and everyone else who has suffed can now rebuild their life just a bit and see that some people out there in this awful world does care. Its also good to know that australia (where i am) is now getting good books.

  • Teresa

    I have just finished reading: ‘Don’t Ever Tell’

    I feel absolutely sick to the bottom of my soul that such atrocities took place against innocent children and young women, and that so called members of God’s church could undertake such atocities.

    My heart goes out to you all. I am not a believer, but if there is a God; I ask that he grant you the inner peace and serenity so cruelly taken from you and that those responsible are brought to justice – and if there is a heaven then surely there is a hell? the rightful place for your abusers and torturerers.

  • Teresa

    I have just finished reading: ‘Don’t Ever Tell’

    I feel absolutely sick to the bottom of my soul that such atrocities took place against innocent children and young women, and that so called members of God’s church could undertake such atocities.

    My heart goes out to you all. I am not a believer, but if there is a God; I ask that he grant you the inner peace and serenity so cruelly taken from you and that those responsible are brought to justice – and if there is a heaven then surely there is a hell? the rightful place for your abusers and torturerers.

  • Elaine – England

    Having readKathys story I feel sick to my heart for her and all of the other children and women who suffered at the hands of these evil people. They will surely enjoy hells damnation for eternity. I feel weak with grief for the opportunities lost in those people who were slowly taken apart by the pure malevalence visited upon them. Who knows what they each may have achieved given a different life filled with love and opportunity!

    To Kathy: I applaud your efforts to uncover the secrets so well hidden. I hope that the love that I and all of the other people who have written messages here and everywhere else, reaches into the depths of your heart and uplifts you. You are worthy and valued beyond you understanding. God Bless you.

  • Grace Metcalfe

    To Kathy

    I hope you get to read this. My heart is broken for you and everything you went through, and all your sisters who went through it with you. Its a small comfort, but there is a lot of peolpe out there who are so proud of you. God’s love for you is endless, and every tear you shed, he cried with your. Your story is not one i will read and forget. The only thing is i wish i could do more.

    God Bless

  • Radio Listener

    There would seem to be serious doubts about the veracity of Kathy’s story. Check alliancesupport.org. On RTE radio on 11 September 06 there was a discussion of her book Don’t Ever Tell and serious concerns expressed by her brother(representing other siblings) and neighbours that she suffered some delusions about her upbringing. The editor of IRISH CRIME magazine admitted being her co-writer on the same show. Her brother claimed he had done no research which would have shown the true situation. The nuns have had a proffessional archivist look for records of Kathy and found none. I am only inserting this so people who were upset may be comforted. However there were sadly many real tragic stories from this period.

  • It beggars belief, it really does. After the hundreds if not thousands of stories from individual women who suffered at the hands of brutal nuns in these Magdalen Asylums – a particular order of nuns (well-known for its “kindnesses”) is looking to sue one individual woman. I suppose then we can take it that the hundreds if not thousands of stories about these hell hole laundries are TRUE!

  • A You Tube Video in Support of Justice for the Magdalene Women made by Gabrielle32

    For The Magdalene Sisters

  • OOOPS Video here

  • I think it is about time that Cathy O’Beirne decided to name the institutions that she claims to have been incarcerated in. She could have given evidence at The Child Abuse Commission outlining the difficulties she had and faced the abusers she claims made her suffer so much. It is obvious to me as to any other survivor of abuse that there are records available which state the date of your incarceration and the date of your discharge from such institutions. I know some people have had difficulty gaining access to such records but they are usually from a much early period in time than Cathy’s age group. People like myself who spent time in these hell holes find it very difficult to accept the fact that she wont name the so called places she was incarcerated in. I also spent time in St. Lomans institution having been sent their directly from the orphanage. I have been able through my solicitors to gain access to all records of my time spent there. Cathy claims to have been their in and around the same time as I was. She would be doing a favour to all of us who have spent so many years trying to be believed to just name the places. She says for legal reasons she cannot do so, that is balony we all had to name these places and people in order to give evidence in front of Mr Sean Ryan at the child abuse commission. If she has any empathy for her fellow survivors she should just name the places and the people and put an end to all the speculation about whether she did or did not spend time in these places as she claims.

  • But it’s not just Kathy who “claims” that the nuns made her suffer – and as for access to records it is a fact that many many records are missing – some deliberately hidden. My official incarceration ended in 1970 yet all the nuns could produce for me were my date of entry and my date of transfer to another Institution .. oh yeah AND the date I made my First Communion – this last piece of information was handed to my solicitors TWO MINUTES before I was sworn in at the Commission to Inquire into Child Abuse (the Ryan Commission).

    Whatever Kathy produces (or doesn’t produce) in relation to the brutality of the nuns DOES NOT invalidate anything I or any other survivor has said.

  • Kelly
  • S Mclean

    I am reading Don’t Ever Tell, and felt much the same as other people who have written in, this is very powerful stuff. I would feel humbled to meet any of the girls who were ‘Maggies’ I feel so overwhelmed by the readings in this book, I really wish I could meet just one of these girls

  • L Ansell

    I have just finished reading Dont ever tell,i was abused when i was a small child for many years,allthough not in the same way as kathy and the other’s alike,what i have been through seems very little compared,well done kathy!!!keep going,we’re all on your side.I can not forgive and forget what has been done,these women are so strong to have survived.

  • Anisa

    well done is all i can say because anyone who can go through such pain and can still tell the story is a hero, and believe me not anyone can do that

  • My from Sweden

    Hi there!

    I was just reading Kathys book sitting on my couch, when a girl on MTv was crying desperately because she didn´t get a brand new Land Rover for her 16 th birthday… Talk about different lifes!!!

    I truly believe in Kathys story, and think it is really sad that some people don´t. Why would she lie?

    But there are people who claims that Jewish (and other) werent killed in the second world war, and that there were no such thing as death camps (like Treblinka, Auschwitz and Birkenau). I wonder why it´s so hard to believe in such things? Why deny it?

    /My – sending my thougths to Kathy and all other Maggies who has been badly treated

  • The nuns have been threatening to sue Kathy for ages now. They should put up or shut up.

  • I´m italian, I´ve read the book and I´d like totranslate it in italian to let know something unknown here in Italy, so I´m looking for an italian publishing co. I had no idea of Magdalene laundries and the cruelty the book deals with. I really enjoyed the book.

  • Bridget

    I have just finished reading ‘Don’t Ever Tell’ I could not put this book down. I am an Australian and have Irish ancestors. I hope that the suffers of these abusive institutions see justice done.The catholic church held responsible for their actions and the priest and nuns involved punished for their crime’s.It would be wonderful if Kathy were to have true happiness in the future.

  • Bridget

    I have just finished reading ‘Don’t Ever Tell’ I could not put this book down. I am an Australian and have Irish ancestors. I hope that the suffers of these abusive institutions see justice done.The catholic church held responsible for their actions and the priest and nuns involved punished for their crime’s.It would be wonderful if Kathy were to have true happiness in the future.

  • Terence

    I have just finished reading the book, see my comment dated 2nd August number 10…Sorry it took me so long to finish it as I was finding it difficut to come to term with ‘God loves and watches over us everywhere’..If God did loves us, why is he allowing all the innocent children to suffer at the brutal hands of so called priests and nuns…All the wars in the past were mostly for religous reasons…I have to say that time has to come for all those who suffered in the past to start naming the brutal people to safe guard future children…

  • aliesha and vera

    hi me and my mum have just read “dont ever tell” im 17 and i think it is disgraceful of what has happened to the children in the homes and laundries i cryed alot and wanted to tell kathy that i am very sorry for what has happened to her it was a shame and i hope she gets what shes intending to do because they deserve what they get. i also feel sorry for her friend liz it was so nasty and cruel they didnt deserve that and i hope liz R.I.P. it is sick what they did. good luck kathy for a bright and happy futire godbless xxxxxx

  • hya ive jst finished reading “Dont Ever Tell” By Kathy O’Beirne n i couldnt put it down. i must be a VERY lucky girl compared to Kathy, as she must of had a very hard time. i feel sorry for her and am glad she tried to stop things that happened to her, happen to other people. well good luck in ur future Kathy x x x

  • kathys book made me so sad. the first chapter made me cry. i am irish but i live in england and my nana was in the magdalene laundries. she ran to scotland and married an irish boy shed come with and had kids, surprisingly we still have the accent!! i also watched the magdalene sisters on channel four last night and that made me sad and angry at the nuns im supposed to respect and idolise. but honestly, those bleeding eejits what hurt my nana can go to hell and i hope they do.
    “i loved my father in hope that one day he would love me back” was the sentence that stood out the most from don’t ever tell probably because i feel exactly that way too. (but my dad doesn’t hit me, he wouldn’t dare, my grandad would kill him)

  • I just turned to this website today. I was orphaned in Dublin. I was released to work for a few weeks. I missed the last bus from town and had to walk 8 miles back. Sr. Ligouri assumed I was pregnant because I was out late and sent me to the Madgalen Asylum to work as punishment for something that I did not do. I live in America. I have to go to Dublin on Sunday to a Redress Boeard meeting dated for the 5th of Dec because they refused to add the trauma of the Asylum to the orphanage traumas. My point is that the nuns in the orphanage put me in there. I had tried to bury all this dehuminizing treatment for a long time; but unfortunitaly it has a way of jumping up at you and striking you when you least expect it. I am glad someone wrote a book about it. Maybe someday I will have the courage to read it. I saw the Movie about the Asylum I was in and I suffered migrane headaches for weeks following.Thank you. Roseanna Ellis.N.J. USA

  • Hi Roseanna

    These nuns are responsible for so much cruelty inflicted on innocent women and children that its a disgrace that they are still allowed access to vulnerable communities.

    The Redress Board here in Ireland will only entertain applications from those who were incarcerated in Industrial Schools – not ONE Magdalen Asylum is on the list! Yet the same “religious” orders who dehumanised children in those places were also responsible for the horrors of these Magdalen Asylums.

    I agree that the PAST is always something that’s AHEAD of you – lying in wait.

    Take Care Roseanna


  • Louise

    I watched ‘The Magdalene Sisters’ on Ch4 last night and it’s left me sickened and disgusted and left in tears that this evil institution was allowed to carry on until almost the 21st century. I’ve also read with interest the various comments regarding Kathy’s Story. Whether the book is factual or not, Kathy speaks for 30,000 poor souls who have either rotted away or are scarred for life because of the unspeakable atrocities carried out in these asylums by so called ‘people of God’, who unfortunately will never be brought to justice. Let’s face it, the Irish government are hardly likely to admit that they allowed 30,000 women and children to suffer horrifying abuse and slavery right under their noses, in the name of God (or should that be Greed?). As per the latest news in the UK, these poor people will probably receive a belated apology from their government in 200 years time, when all responsible have passed away (and will hopefully be rotting in hell) and the victims are at peace. My thoughts are with all the victims of the laundries. After watching the film and reading about some of these poor girls, it really has made me realise how ridiculous and petty my own day-to-day problems are. I wish there was more I could do to help. Louise x

  • Sinead

    I hate this world. I can’t wait to see what good lies ahead when we all leave it. Horrible.

  • Sinead

    I watched the film last week and I am disgusted. What has happened to the human race?. Those nuns are not fit to be in charge of rats. Disgusting!. Such courage those poor women and children had. Well done for your strength. I hope you will be rewarded in heaven.

  • ema

    having read dont ever tell i hav been searching the internet endlessley,trying to find out more about the horrendeous magdalen laundries.words cannot express my deepsest and heartfelt sorrow for those who suffered at the hands of gods women!!!!! god bless you all

  • i,v just finished reading dont ever tell, it is one of the saddest books iv ever read hope kathy will find peace in her heart in the end and stop all the child abuse that goes on in the world gud luck kathy from jackie sheen england.

  • Victim/survivor of Goldenbridge Industrial School, Inchicore. Dublin 8

    “Some people will say this episode is not significant because the woman is mentally ill. Since when have mentally ill people started to make false allegations of child abuse? Only since, they have been encouraged to do so by the highest in the land. Only since they have been “compensated” for doing so – e.g. by the Redress Board.”] Taken from; alliancesupport.org. 28/03/07.

    alliancesupport.org, which is in Northern Ireland -, is partially funded by the Irish Department of Education. All it seems to do is emotionally, mentally and psychologically assail victims/survivors of institutional child abuse. The moderator fit the pseudonymous subsection above, which is one of many -quite nicely, attached it to a genuine article that bears no relation to institutional child abuse. It is implying that people who go before the Residential Institutions Redress Board, [that was explicitly, by Irish government, set up -to impartially, honourably, yes, I reiterate justifiably award those of whom were wrongfully incarcerated – are mentally ill. The perpetrator of these contemptible acts; who incidentally, is an ex De-La Salle seminarian has for some years been harassing and haranguing very vulnerable victims/survivors. This order, throughout the whole world; has purportedly an abominable child sex abuse record. There are allegedly victims/survivors who have threatened suicide. Because of this man’s actions the moderator who was on the receiving end of the Redress Board endorses this operates behaviour and cannot see the woods for the trees. He has shut himself off to the pleas [of those who spent their whole childhood s in the institutions] to stop this caper. He deletes requests, without ever trying to analyse. I rather find them both – pitiable characters indeed. The ex seminarian is forever and a day mouth -piecing intellectuals work he discovers on the web sites. He has never gotten over his De-La -Salle mentors. One minute, it is the Passion of Rory Connor; the next – it is the passion of Tom Hayes… The latter must regurgitate this geek’s perpetual crucifixion.
    Finally yet importantly, I want to say to both of the above mentioned, that it behoves ye to put your energy into helping those who suffered at the hands of the religious. The article above is a typical example of the pain that countless children in the past suffered. IT IS A TESTIMONY OF TRUTH. Where are your testimonials?
    PS: Alliance support indisputably, by the moderators account has hundreds of supporters, perhaps even thousands. So why does one never get to hear their voices. The site ascertains it is for those who spent their young lives – in the institutions… My final answer to that is; — Codswallop! GOOD LUCK, Knitter, you are doing excellent work highlighting the atrocities that were bestowed on us in the dark days.

  • The “alliance” is made up of 2 guys, 3 sheep and a yard brush

  • Victim/survivor of Goldenbridge Industrial School, Goldenbridge, Inchicore, Dublin 8

    “The “alliance” is made up of 2 guys, 3 sheep and a yard brush”.

    Plesae bear with me while I thus rant a little, overdue. Those green three sheep need to be rounded up; immediately – by those two green churchy guys with the yard brush and brought by the green guys to the nearest abattoir. The green sheep have after all been grazing in a luscious green field that did not in the first instance – belong to the green churchy.
    The interloper moocow in the neighbouring green field could do with being sent by the green people to the same destination. Before it yet again decides to escape! I thought it was already hanging up like a pig waiting to be eaten by the two churchy guys – in the two green churchy guys hangout. The contents are albeit implausibly epistemologically, metaphorically questionable to say the least. I do have the propensity to write in riddles. Slan go foill.. Little Dorrit is staring ye in the face, need I say more? A golden bridge victim/survivor of institutional child abuse

  • 2 guys and 3 sheep ! Seems there’s a spare sheep or maybe these 2 guys have a new plan for a fivesome!

  • Victim/survivor of Goldenbridge Inchicore Dublin 8


    March 12, 2007

    Ladies, Gentlemen and Scholars,

    “I know that some people raised as Catholics blame the Church of Rome for their difficulties in later life, nourishing a particularly degenerate literary genre.” – Quote from Michael Fitzpatrick’s article on “The Dawkins Delusion” dated 18 December 2006.

    I sent you the article but I think this sentence is worth an article of its own.

    Dr Fitzpatrick is a “Catholic Atheist”. I describe myself as a semi-lapsed Catholic of the traditionalist type. What we have in common is an education that valued intellectual rigour and took concepts like ‘Free Will’ and ‘Personal Responsibility’ for granted. (Incidentally his “Brother Alpheus” sounds like the name of a De La Salle Brother – my own religious order!).

    We have become a degenerate society in which “Victim” is a term of praise and the degenerates who make false claims of child abuse are richly rewarded from state coffers. Their leaders – like Mary Raftery and Christine Buckley – receive public honours while heroes like Nora Wall, Sister Xaviera and the late Brother Joseph O’Connor are viciously slandered.

    I cannot see how our society is going to survive. We are as decadent as the Weimar Republic ever was. Meanwhile equivalents of the Nazis are everywhere. Islamic fascism threatens us from the outside while criminals – both political and ‘ordinary’ – are undermining us from within.
    What does our society stand for? Are there any values for which people will fight? Surely that type of question should figure in the history books that you write?


    Rory Connor
    [Personal contact info deleted]
    Dear Sir/Madam

    Why has the media in the past, always, in relation to CHILD ABUSE issues, chosen to side with a character as such as the above named when giving media space. It has simply ignored victims/survivors at the expense of this abominable despicable person.

    Yikes, he sounds dreadful. ‘Degenerate’ – what a very odd choice of word.

    Something of a give-away, in fact – as if perhaps he, like the people who ran places like Goldenbridge, thinks the children there were somehow inherently deserving of harsh treatment.

    I bet that’s it.

    t’s a way of thinking that humans seem to fall into all too easily – as with Dalits – untouchables – in Hinduism.

    They’re supposed to be inherently dirty and polluted all the way through.

    Of course there is no such thing!

    But humans like to think there is – unless they’re lucky enough to learn otherwise, or to be too sensible to believe it in the first place.

    The idea of ‘sin’ probably has a lot to do with it…

    All this is one reason I’m so harsh about religion: it can foster this kind of thinking (though non-religious ideas can too).

    We are “bhangi’s” according to Mr. Rory Connor.

    This man sees fit to post his drivel on alliancesupport.org which is partially paid for by the Dept of Education & Science. Millions of Euros over the years has been spent on propping up the wrong sources. Victims/survivors are not the recipients of it and I consider it despicable.

    I expect you will intervene in this matter? Victim/survivor of Goldenbridge institution.

  • Victim/survivor of Goldenbridge Industrial School, Inchicore, Dublin 8


    April 15, 2007

    The alliancesupporg.org is still continuing to churn out one sided arguments. When victims/survivors of institutional abuse try to challenge Mr Rory Connor their posts are deleted.
    This website is not for the likes of ex De-La-Salle seminarian. Since when did he become a victim/survivor of institutional abuse? I am thoroughly disgusted with the shenanigans of both the failed Christian Brother and the Moderator, Tom Hayes….. Victim/survivor of Goldenbridge Industrial School.
    This is a proposal by a Fine Gael candidate in Meath to have a Redress Board to deal with allegations of child abuse in ordinary schools. The standard of proof at the Residential Institutions Redress Board (RIRB) is next to zero and I think there are about 15,000 applicants for “compensation”. Setting up a similar body with similar proof standards for day schools would probably attract hundreds of thousands of people who suddenly “remember” that they were abused by school teachers.

    In particular it would encourage false allegations of SEXUAL abuse. You do not have to claim sex abuse in order to be “compensated” by the RIRB – physical or emotional (!) abuse will do just as well. However because of thuggish media campaigns by Mary Raftery and Co, many people do not realise this and strive to “remember” how they were raped as children!

    Do we really want more of this?


    Rory Connor

  • Tom


  • Victim/survivor of Goldenbridge, Inchicore, Dublin., 8

    Tell me, is there a haze between the Power….ful?…….Curiosity killed the cow information made it all bloated!?! These darn metaphors, am at it again. Victim/survivor of institutional child abuse. Goldenbridge Industrial School, Inchicore, Dublin.
    P.S. My powerful apologies if you aint the moderator of the nassssssssssssssssty alliancesupport.org website that purports to help those who were as children hauled before the courts and imprisoned in Ireland’s gulags.

  • Victim/survivor of Goldenbridge, Inchicore, Dublin., 8

    “Seems there’s a spare sheep” or maybe these 2 guys have a new plan for a fivesome”


    Had they not better QUICKLY retrieve one of the sheep from the slaughterhouse and let the spare sheep and it getting cracking. Before one can say: “who are all the porn stars listed on http://www.alliancesupport.org” there could be a family of the big five O. I’m only ba..ba..ba. yahning!

  • Victim/survivor of Goldenbridge, Inchicore, Dublin., 8


    Rory Connor is yet again using the medium of alliancesupport.org to express his drivel. “In particular it would encourage false allegations of SEXUAL abuse” – cites Mr. Connor, without giving any genuine evidence to substantiate his argument. This failed ex Christian Brother literally appeared on the institutional abuse horizon out of nowhere. He is neither a professional health care worker or counsellor of any description yet he seems to have immersed himself right in the middle of very traumatic, vulnerable people. ONE WONDERS IS THERE A HIDDEN AGENDA TO THIS MANS ILL DEEDS? Goldenbridge Ex inmate.

  • Victim/survivor of Goldenbridge, Industrial School, Goldenbridge, Inchicore, Dublin 8

    “We are becoming an atomised society and that is one problem that cannot be blamed on “the power of the Catholic Church”. On the contrary it is the people who tell lies about the Church who are the main culprits”.

    Do victims/survivors of institutional abuse really have to read on http://www.alliancesupport.org the contant drivel of Rory Connor such as the above. I specifically note his use of “atom”ised language that he “bomb”ards us with – The night classes are definitely getting to his tiny atomised mind. Gosh, I just wish Dawkins, or someone of his calibre could employ his intellectual energy to root and weed out once and for all this weedish, waspish; gibberish; throllish being. The “power” of the Catholic Church does not depend on this geek. He is by their books – history incarnate indeed!

  • susan jameson

    to all the kathys that the Catholic church totured and forgot about…may you find peace and justice in this life. to the catholic church and in particular the clergy that dealt in this torture you will meet your maker and only he will judge you…his vengeance is greater than ours…Jesus said “suffer not the little children but let them come onto me” I truly believe that our words and deeds are played back to us and that we will all have to justify our actions to him..
    Kathy I prayed for you last night and for all those poor children. I hope that the church has attempted to put this in some part to rest by recognising what it has done to you..
    stay safe be happy and don’t allow those preists and nuns power over your mind you have to live your life fully for Liz and all your other dear friends…Don’t let them win.


  • emma pollock

    i have just read kathy o’beirne’s story, and i am astounded and shocked of her childhood trauma,i have tears for all those woman who in fact done nothing wrong, but were wrong done against them,put in mental asylums for speaking out of their torture and horrendus physical/mental and sexual abuse they suffered through the nuns in the laundries, when you think of nuns and preists and being in their care, you would never expect the disgusting way they they treated these poor souls. to be told they were pentinent sinners and their family didnt want them or worse they were dead, how could they be so cruel to take away a childs hope and love and punish them for well nothing. i felt sick to hear of what happened to some of the woman. those woman in mental asylums and unable to live out of care now their lives have been stolen and theirs hearts and souls broken because of torment to why nobody helped them.i cant believe this happened wen the whole of the different communities turnned their heads to look the other way.i just want to say rest in peace and may god take the deceased maggies into his arms for eternity and free thier souls of the hell on earth they lived.

  • Can’t wait for the inside story of Opus Dei to be published.

  • There has been so much denigration Of Kathy on her story of her childhood incarceration with a conscienceless religious order. I hear that Legion of Mary elements and sympathisers of Opus Dei and the Knights of Columbanus are set to do a hatchet job on Kathy.

  • Cassandra

    In regards to the question as to whether there is any logic in making an attendance before the New Commission to enquire I believe the answer remains in the question, What is it you as a person hope to achieve.

    Prior to Laffoy resigning each of the funded groups where in favour of survivors making an attendance even though individuals like me were informing people nothing in the commission was set up for their advantage. We had hopes and aspirations that after all the relevant information had been collated we would see vindication of the claims of survivors brutality and sexual assualt had indeed occurred within the institutions. Laffoy has at least acknowledged in her interim report that the likelihood was that it had happened at least in the Fisheries school.

    Survivors should be aware they are in the middle of a battle between the most vicious organizations ever compelled to answer for the sins of the past. Every means at their disposal will be used to wilfully delay, rupture and finally destroy any possibility of the actual facts being placed into the public domain. You have entered battle against the Irish Government, the Catholic Church. The Attorney General and self appointed survivor group leaders. Funded in the main by these very same organizations.

    The main culprit in the whole affair, The Department of Education has refused on numerous occasions to comply with the letter of the constitutioned law. They have infringed your personal liberties and constitutional right by their actions. Where were or are the voice of the groups who say they represent you. Indeed the silence of the Soliciters who will receive vast amounts of money which in many cases will be larger than the actual awards awarded by the Redress Board have to-date remained silent.

    Mr Noel Dempsey has interferred with the natural progress of Justice. He has determined that sampling of cases is all that is needed. You as an applicant to attend have no rights. Your input will be determined by an individual who is under obligation to comply with demand placed on him by the Minister of Education and not by the natural laws of justice.

    I believe the very fact Mr Sean Ryan has accepted the right of the Education to involve itself is indicative of the lack of respect this Commission has for the Law.

    There will be no valid report at the conclusion of this farce. There will be a structured comical sketch in which Institutional Industrial and Reformatory Abuse never occured. Your experiences will never see the light of day. The Church and State will be completely exornerated and the survivors will be ridiculed.

    Do you still want to attend a Commission which is totally devoid of reality, Intergity or truth. Consider carefully before you enter the Lion’s Den

  • There is no such thing as Perfect Justice. Nobody gets Perfect Justice really and in the case of institutional Abuse its already been shown to have occurred – read the reports on Newtownforbes, Artane, Ferryhouse, Daingean, Letterfrack, where documents were shown acknowledging the terrible state of the children (ill-fed, ill clothed, savagely beaten children) so Ryan’s Report WILL acknowledge the abuse. There have already been cases through the courts backing all those testimonies. Peter Tyrrell’s book written long before any of this will also be taken into account.

    The Education Dept. has long covered up the abuses in the Institutions and for it to act honourably with this Commission would be miraculous. It’s raison d’être now is to protect its patch and hope that the religious orders should most of the blame.

  • Victim/survivor of Goldenbridge.

    “Committee Members of alliancesupport.org are asked to note that it is NOT our function to deal with complaints about solicitors or Redress Board procedures. It is our function to give details of the complaints procedures and other helpful information when asked for. Far too many people who are dissatisfied with their awards, or who have gripes or other complaints about their solicitors are using the Support structure to represent their concerns. This is not what we are about. Give the relevant information when asked and let the person deal with the procedures themselves. We have far more important matters to deal with.

    Yes, Tom Hayes and his cohorts have far more imperative matters to grace with their presence at the alliancesupport.org site. Which, incidentally, they must be here made cognisant of, once again, that the site is/was indeed funded by the Irish Education Dept for the assistance of those who spent their whole/partial childhoods in Ireland’s Industrial Schools/reformatories! It was ‘not’, incontestably, by you//cohorts/government created for entertaining the desolate, ominous essayist ex seminarian in the shape of gloomy spooky Rory Connor and his ilk, the latter of whom uses it as a blackboard to belittle the very victims/survivors of those aforementioned hellholes! It should be the primary utility of alliancesupport.org to pin your ears back and listen to those of whom the site was by it/government distinctively created. Instead, it incessantly sows the seed of dissension, sullenness and animosity in recurrently deleting justifiable stuff posted by unadulterated victims/survivors to its site. BTW, Spam artists fallaciously prop up the number of visitors. I conjecture, does the site give pragmatic amount of numbers to Mary Hanafin when seeking funding.? Tom Hayes, your principal purpose is to serve the equitable needs of those contacting you with legitimate complaints. You declare that “far too many people who contact you that are dissatisfied with their rewards etc…“ If my memory serves me correctly it is not that long ago when you stated that people who contacted you – who went before the RIRB – in the main were comprehensively so fulfilled with their awards. Pray tell us please, what exactly is alliance support about? As a remarkable amount of us, do not either experience alliance or support from your site. I would like to conclude. As long as you keep dangling Rory Connor[s,] in front of our eyes, your site, by us, will never be esteemed or supported. From a Victim/survivor of Goldenbridge, Industrial School, Inchicore, Dublin 8 Ireland. [Eire]

  • Victim/survivor of Goldenbridge, Industrial School.

    “The Education Dept. has long covered up the abuses in the Institutions and for it to act honourably with this Commission would be miraculous.”

    The Irish Education Dept should, [from the outset] never ever have been involved in the running of the Residential Institutions Redress Board. An overseas Independent Body should have been the overseer of all of this vital work…Victims/survivors of institutional child abuse have by all and sundry been thoroughly sold out. Fancy having to tell the very Dept of Education at the Irish RIRB, all about the injustice we received in our respective institutions, when the very same department was as much to blame as the religious for its generational improper examinations of the institutions. The Education Dept has indeed, as you post, Andrew, covered up – to no end – abuse of the highest order, of vulnerable children who were by it, in bygone days, ’ illegally’ placed [dumped] into its care. Indeed, Ms. Mc Manus [on behalf of the Dept of Education] gave evidence, to the Commission to Inquire into Child Abuse. She was, in fact specially selected, by it – for the job. The DOE&S did its coursework beforehand. Cassandra says, “I believe the very fact Mr Sean Ryan had accepted the right of the Education to involve itself is indicative of the lack of respect this Commission has for the Law.” Yes, what Cassandra posts sums it up satisfactorily. The whole god darn lot have conspiring with each other. There is, at this juncture, not very much we can do. We were by the whole shebang from top to bottom SOLD OUT.
    Bertie Ahern, Taoiseach, [Prime Minister] in recent times [Sunday Irish Independent] said, [not verbatim] at a meeting with MRSA casualties spokespersons’ that there were some redress boards that he had regretted putting in place. I noted subsequently that the media in relation to Institutional Child Abuse RIRB did not notice this fact. It left a sour taste in my mouth. Was he, I speculate, hinting at those of us who spent our childhoods in the industrial Schools? As for the Irish Education Dept finding itself acting worthily at the CICA, that for me in drawing a parallel is like posthumously finding Hitler accountable for the concentration camps. No Nay Never! Signed: Victim/survivor of Goldenbridge Industrial School, Inchicore, Dublin, 8 Ireland. [Eire]

  • Survivor of St Georges Industrial School, Limerick.

    St Georges Good Shepherd, Industrial School, Limerick Survivor .

    I was in George’s from when I was fourteen months old.

    If you weren’t a catholic when you were put into George’s, they had you baptised that same day and definitely before you went to bed that first night.

    There used to be a superstition here in Ireland, that if a child was not baptised within hours of been born, there was a curse put on them and where ever they lived.

    The Nuns

    Mother Patrick, she worked in the kitchen.

    Mother Good Council, she became head at one stage.

    Mother Good Shepherd was in charge when I was there but not for all of my fourteen and a bit years.

    There was Mother Anthony, Mother Pauline in the bakery.

    For me the most terrible nun, was Mother Good Shepherd.

    She was savage in all ways and in all our days when she was in charge.

    There was Mother Leoncia(pheonetic)she was, like me now, a nurse and worked in the infirmary.

    There was mother Loretta, she worked in the top room with the shoe repairs.

    Of course there was Mother Josephine, she played the piano.

    Mother Joseph, who is now Sister Breed Mullin, in charge of all enquiries relating to past residents.


    It is well documented that kids like us present as autistic, or in some way retarded.

    This is due to intellectual deprivation along with terrible trauma.

    As you know, frightened children cannot learn.

    They direct all their vitality towards survival of the self.

    This develops into a way of surviving, even in the adult world.

    It’s fear of risk to change I suppose.

    Of course the impact of formative years of trauma leaves many adults with a deficit of intellectual ability.

    Our reading and writing at age 14 was around the six year old stage.

    When we enter the adult world the only thing we understand is survival.

    Indeed we were brought up with such a low opinion of ourselves that even as adults we believe that education is not for the likes of us.

    When I left Georges, I had a reading age of about eight.

    I could just about write my name.

    I knew the alphabet and times tables up to 10, but that was the extent of my learning.

    I remember spending my days in the class room wondering if I was going to be called to be whipped or not.

    You see only the nun in charge whipped us.

    And she worked like this.

    She would tell us to go to her office at a certain time and date.

    That date could be any thing like three and more weeks away.

    So our young minds were consumed about what was going to happen to us; so we couldn’t learn our lessons.


    We had to kneel in front of the nun sitting on a kind of throne in the refectory; we were doing what was called,” penance” and were put in The Black Hole.

    This was a form of solitary confinement.

    It was a pitch dark room. We were put in that room from any thing between three and five days.

    We were only allowed out to kneel in front of the nun, for our meals of dry bread and black coco without sugar.

    We were put into penance petticoats, which were grey things that had no sleeves.

    And that black hole was like cold storage, even in the hot summer.

    Our socks were taken and shoe laces were taken from us and we had to stand in that black hole for three to five days and only allowed to go to the loo, when one of the older girls, who would have been brought up in Georges, opened the door to let us go to the loo.

    She was forbidden to talk or look at us.

    She had to keep her eyes down while she escorted us to the loo and brought us back to the black hole and locked us in.

    This was punishment for things like skitting in the church or when saying the rosary in the evening or even for whispering in the refectory during meals.


    When we were twelve years old, we were made to wear what we called top corsets.

    These things, made by the older girls, were about four layers of calico with strings that came from the back round to the front.

    We had to tighten these strings very tight and the nuns used to rub our backs to make sure we were wearing them.

    The whole idea was to prevent our breasts growing and in adult life they did permanent damage to many of us, in that we could not breast feed our infants, because our nipples weren’t developed, due to these top corsets.


    I went to London, was a cleaner in a nursing home and in those two years I went to evening classes.

    At first I had to do a literacy course and from there I went on to study and obtain five o levels; three b’s and two c’s.

    Nursing wasn’t something that came naturally to me, but it offered me security and a safe place to live.

    Because even though I’d obtained a formal education,

    I was still very institutionalised in that I was too frightened to live on my own.

    I needed the institutional environment of nursing to feel safe and secure.


    Another very prominent trauma in children like us is that we are known as the ‘affectionless thieves’.

    By this is meant we really can’t love anyone.

    We are possessive and when we have kids we are possessive of them and over protective of them and we over love them because it’s the first time in our lives that we experience what it is to really love.

    Pleasure and Love are very confused for us.

    We often mistake pleasure, especially sexual pleasure for love. A survivor from St Georges, Industrial School, Limerick, Eire.

  • Victim/survivor of Goldenbridge, Industrial School, Inchicore.

    Mass at any price for a few? October 20, 2007

    Archbishop Seán Brady will address survivors of institutional abuse at a Mass today in Cork organised by Right of Place and Ms Buckley. The vast majority of survivors will not know of or hear of what Archbishop Sean Brady says. The vast majority of those who came through the various Institutions will not hear because for them and their families they have not been through a Catholic Church door from the time that they left the Institutions. They have not regarded themselves as catholic at all and so will not hear the Archbishops address. This then is why so few from the Institutions attend this Mass each year. Families will of course make up the numbers of “over three hundred” and we would wish that they gain some comfort from their attendance there to day. It would of course be more acceptable to former residents if they could but understand why Bishop Buckley of Cork, together with many other Bishops continue to finance this group called Right of Place while ignoring all other groups or former residents outside Cork. This year too sees another group vying for recognition. Ms Buckley, who sees an opportunity in all that former residents do and achieve while restricting them to a place called “Aislinn” (which has developed a dependence culture all of its own?) is to provide the “Choir” for the Mass to day. What a talented person despite her earlier sad upbringing as portrayed in “Dear Daughter”. No, the greater numbers of former residents who contact the Alliance Support Group from England, Ireland, Canada and the United States with less from other areas of the globe are very vocal about the Religious Orders and the Catholic Church in what they see as their selective offerings of support when it comes with a cheque attached to it. Will these Religious accounts be published? No, of course not. Let us hope that when Mr Justice Sean Ryan submit’s his report that he will recommend the closure of these “madras’s” such as Aislinn and Right of Place Cork which continue to support a “cottage industry” that does nothing but develop a dependency culture for all who use them

    Tom Hayes may deem it robust to malign, and disparage other institutional child abuse organisations – but with the same coupon he should be putting the mirror up to see the emulation of himself and the reflection of his own unreceptive behaviour towards the very same people he purports to be supporting. He cuts off victims/survivors of institutional abuse from having their autonomous say on ‘his’ website. Alliancesupport.org. Yet, he allows an en-seminarian, Rory Connor, who is allegedly employed by the Christian Brothers to govern the website [of which in the ‘first’ instance was ‘first and foremost ‘created for those who were in institutions] with his anti- victims/survivor antagonistic, belligerent, emotionally destructive drivel. “The vast majority of survivors will not know of or hear of what Archbishop Sean Brady says.” Is that truthful, moderator, Tom? What an appalling, outrageous, vile pity that will be for their souls. They will be predestined to perish in hell for not having attended this special mass in Cork. Gosh, if only they had beforehand contacted alliancesupport.org they could have learned all about the mass and have joined in the singing with the new Cardinal and the rest of their institutional sisters and Brothers. Tom says, “They have not been through a Catholic Church door from the time that they left the Institutions.” And who would blame them, I say, for the way the Catholic Church treated them in the past. Suffer little children to come unto me for theirs has been the kingdom of Hell. Suffer victims/survivors of institutional abuse to come unto me – for they do not know any better due to insupportable, unbearable trauma. Victim/survivor of St Vincent’s, Industrial School, Goldenbridge, Inchicore, Dublin 8 Eire.

  • Kathy Ferguson

    From: Kathy Ferguson To: Brenda. McVeigh CICA Tuesday, September 4, 2007 Child Abuse Commission

    Hi. Brenda.
    The survivors claim that while in institutions run by Catholic religious orders, they suffered harsh treatment and sexual abuse.

    It is believed that most of the “orphans” were in fact children born to unmarried parents.

    Since this was during the 1930’s, ’40s and ’50s they were left in the care of religious orders that operated orphanages.

    In some cases those establishments were transformed into health-care facilities and in other cases the children were shipped from orphanages to existing hospitals. At these hospitals, that were also run by religious orders,

    My passion for this work is deeply rooted in my own personal experience

    I have now been informed, that Judge Ryan, gave the Religious Orders that signed the indemnity deal, a choice of having a public hearing ????

    18, Religious Orders signed up for the Indemnity deal. yet only 6 Religious Orders have given evidence at the Ryan commission.

    All the group leaders bar one, and 37 girls Industrial Schools were left out of this commission. WHY??

    It seems strange that all these group leaders, were and are getting paid by the Irish government and the Catholic Orders.

    Who decided that there should be sampling.??

    I like many others, were not asked or given any say on sampling.

    I am not alone. I am one of the many survivors worldwide.

    We are the victims of childhood exploitation and abuse. We are the former street children.

    We are the former children of war. We are orphans and victims of institutional child abuse. Our childhoods have been taken from us by those entrusted to protect and care for us.

    In the wake of that abuse came poverty, homelessness, corruption, mutilations, lack of educuation, girls genocide and death.

    These institutions have built their future on our misfortunes.

    Just like I now feel that this commission has inflicted on me, a promise of a full investigation into all child abuse.

    That seems to have come to nothing. Kathy Ferguson

  • Victim/survivor of Goldenbridge Industrial School, Inchicore

    “We were the victims of childhood exploitation and abuse. We were the former street children.”

    Indeed, Kathy, and I can safely say to you today that I still consider myself to be a “street” person. Nothing has changed. The government cherry-picked the institutions that went on both the Commission to Inquire into Institutional Child Abuse – and the Residential Institutions Redress Board. From: A victim/survivor of, St Vincent’s, Industrial School, Goldenbridge Inchicore, Dublin 8 Eire. (Former Women’s Prison)

  • Victim/survivor of Goldenbridge Industrial School, Inchicore, Dublin.

    Madras (pronounced MAD-res) indeed, is also a city in Jefferson County, Oregon, United States. Nevertheless, wait for it, Madra, “as Bearla” also, quite simply means “dog”. How poetic!
    “Mad Mad Dog” is a religious cardinal out in the Wilton sun” has to it a pleasant Corkian tone. Woof! Woof! I say, the dog has retrieved for himself, a skull, erm, red cap. “Is that my last crimson drop be for thee, To moisten the grass of my forefathers’ grave” etc. The lapdog, I believe, with his new-found rag is over the Vatican moon. Unfortunately, though, I hear that his cunning fox terrier friend was not crafty enough and as a result is consequently foaming at the mouth, because he lost out. There is nobody singing his Dublin praises. He is just a general Vatican dogsbody. What a shame!

  • Victim/survivor of Goldenbridge Industrial School, Inchicore, Dublin.

    Last post, should have read “Corkonian”. I do not give a dog’s bone about the fox terrier. I know he is barking mad/losing the rag over the mad mad dog, before him, getting the precious piece of cloth. What a crying shame, it is not? To hell!

  • Victim/Survivor of Goldenbridge Industrial School, Inchicore, Dublin. Eire.

    “Christine Doyle also said she had never seen babies strapped to potties in Goldenbridge, whereas her sister had claimed it was routine.”

    Re: Christine Doyle & Goldenbridge, Industrial School.

    Just a few Goldenbridge points I would like to share – with whomever.
    1) Christine (a) Doyle ‘worked’ with the babies in Goldenbridge

    2) She was a very kind and ‘innocent’ person.

    3) Also from my very vivid reminiscence of her, she was exceedingly caring and sensitive towards the tiny babies in her charge in Goldenbridge.

    4) She (an unwaged employee) would have looked up to her employer, Sr. Xaveria. Survival technique!

    5) What else would one expect Christine to say except that she “never saw any babies strapped to potties?

    6) She would have been (and still is by all accounts) very influenced by Sr. Xaveria, who was a very candid and domineering Sister of Mercy. This dependency predisposition with those who grew up in institutions is indubitably and predictably very common.

    7) I grew up in Goldenbridge, and I dare anyone to challenge me to say that there were never any babies strapped to potties in the institution.

    8) I saw them everyday with my own two eyes.

    9) Then again, I was not ever a non- consenting teenage employee of Sr. Xaveria. As indeed, was Christina!

    10) I was just a non-consenting illegal unpaid Goldenbridge child slave labourer. Unless that is if one considers a once yearly 2/6d (old Irish half crown) as sufficient, remuneration for jobs (such as rosary beads assembling) rendered.

    11) Pets in Goldenbridge were/are as dissimilar as chalk and cheese in every sphere in their outlook with respect of Goldenbridge (abhorrent) events

    12) One, believe me, has to have had grown up there to understand the dynamics of the abysmal institution… Retrospectively, even as child prisoners in the institution they would have been as divided as, they indeed are now because of the disparate treatment that was to them meted out…

    13) I would like to remind all readers to ‘This is Memory’ to pay no attention to the diatribe apropos Goldenbridge that Rory Connor dishes out on alliancesupport.org. This ex-religious Roman Catholic seminarian does not have any legitimate affiliation to matters pertaining to institutional Child Abuse. He is a self-appointed spokesperson.

    14) Reputable people with legitimate interests in Institutional Child Abuse issues allegedly say that he is being paid by Religious organisations to try to pin the dirt on those who have made complaints about their childhoods in the industrial schools of Ireland of the past.

    15) Rory Connor, the despicable character that he is has also purportedly stooped so low to try to belittle those who have already died in tragic circumstances. His gross actions are far too horrific to state here.

    Victim/survivor of St Vincent’s Industrial School, Goldenbridge, Inchicore, Dublin. 8 Ireland.

  • Victim/survivor of Goldenbridge IndustrialSchool, Inchicore, Dublin, 8 Eire

    Taken from: alliancesupport.org website mid Dec 2007.

    “However, in Monday’s edition of Morning Ireland on RTE Radio 1, a woman who grew up in St Kyran’s, Rathdrum, gave a quite different picture of the same nun, Sister Xavieria.”

    When Sr. Xaveria from Goldenbridge in the early sixties moved to St Kyran’s, Rathdrum, it is a known fact to all of us, (I think, most of us, anyway who remember her – who had no families to go to on summer holiday’s and of whom subsequently went each year to St Joseph’s, Holiday Home) that she had doubtless comparatively mellowed. As we then oftentimes visited the Industrial School on Sundays. Again, (I individually would positively have noticed the difference.) The woman who grew up in St Kyran’s would have gone there (I recall) in 1965. Therefore, my reminiscence of Sr Xaveria would have been in and around the same time, she was there. However, she would never have been in a position to make a Goldenbridge comparison. How could she? She was never there. Sister Xaveria left the gulag in 1963. She can only tell it from her Rathdrum perception. Besides, the beautiful surroundings in Rathdrum would have lent enormously to Sr. Xaveria’s newfound ‘mild’ demeanour. I am sure of that – again, I have to say it that I saw her with my own to eyes. In addition, St Kyran’s was a much more open and less stressful place, so it would have been more difficult for her in my estimation to relate to the children in the same ‘fearful’ way she did in Goldenbridge. Even the staff from Goldenbridge, Industrial School took on a more passive nature when they went on holidays with us each summer to nearby St Joseph’s Holiday Home, Rathdrum. It, albeit was ever so short-lived as when we returned to Goldenbridge it was back as usual to the normal fearful ways. Incidentally, the woman who defends Sr. Xaviera may have been for all we know a pet of hers. In addition, she went there at a time when things were slowly changing. Sister Xaveria also had her pets in Goldebridge.

    I would hazard a guess that the woman who spoke to Morning Ireland on RTE Radio I PRAISING Sister Xaveria is/was more than likely – a pet. They were – (as I have uttered on innumerable times on the Internet) in Goldenbridge – the bane of our lives.
    Sr. Xaveria, in Goldenbridge in my day was the most feared Sister of Mercy. Children lived in fear o her each day of their young lives. Sister Mary Bernadine (who was before my time, thank goodness) was by all accounts even more severe than Sr. Xaveria (Severia) was.

    BTW, it is Sister “Xaveria,” not what Rory Connor has written above on alliancesupport.org. He routinely misspells her name, which tells one that he is not familiar with her on a personal level excepting that from what he reads in the tabloids. In addition, Sister X is just that – a sister, a congregational sister, from a religious organisation known as the SISTERS of “Mercy.” She is NOT a nun. A nun can also be a ‘sister’ but a sister is not necessarily a nun, only a sister that is the case with Sister X. Sorry, but it is not intentional of me to confound the reader. Rory Connor once belonged to religious organisation, I wonder was he only ever a “Brother,” (I must look it up) as opposite to a ‘wannabe’ Priest. Can you just visualise him as being a Father. Heaven’s above! He doubtless, (if that were the case in point,) would have run from his own children! Which he allegedly did to a young boy (in a Dublin pub) – who was in extreme distress.

    My picture is also a different one to the one to given to Morning Ireland Radio I. It is/was a real life portrait. Rory Connor, for a man who was a near De la Silly Brother – he has many typos in his spellings. Why do I ponder? Is he perhaps distracted with all the various concoctions he dishes out a la la la opus dei
    alliancesupport.org carte. Victim/survivor of St Vincent’s, industrial School, Goldenbridge, Inchicore, Dublin, 8 Ireland.

    * St Joseph’s Holiday Home for Girls was only a stone’s throw from the boy’s St Kyran’s Industrial School, Rathdrum, Co Wicklow, Ireland. It was a home distinctly purchased by the Sister’s of Mercy with the profits from the assemblage of Rosary Beads by the prisoners of Goldenbridge Gulag. A portion of the grounds of the Summer home and two old cottages were handed over by the Sisters of Mercy to the Redress Board to help pay towards (our equitable) compensation (that we were not in receipt of when we were as mere children from very young ages on a daily basis perpetually slaving away making rosary beads. I stipulated before that we received 2/6 per annum, for our slavery services rendered, but I must make it much more succinct in stating that we immediately handed over our earnings (if we were lucky enough to receive it, that was) to a staff member who had a makeshift tuck shop in place. We did not during my incarceration period have bank accounts set up in our names with monies from our child slave labour activities.

  • What Rhoary is basically involved with is Historical Revisionism, which is the attempt to change commonly held ideas about the past. In its legitimate form it is the reexamination of historical facts, with an eye towards updating historical narratives with newly discovered, more accurate, or less biased information, acknowledging that history of an event, as it has been traditionally told, may not be entirely accurate.

    “Historical revisionism” (also but less often in English “negationism”), as used in Alliance article, describes the process that attempts to rewrite history by minimizing, denying or simply ignoring essential facts. Perpetrators of such attempts to distort the historical record often use the term because it allows them to cloak their illegitimate activities (and they are illegitimate activities) with a phrase which has a legitimate meaning.

    Negationism relies on a number of techniques such as logical fallacies and appeal to fear.

    Examples of historical revisionism (negationism) include: Japan’s comfort women – these women were actually sex slaves of the Japanese Army, Holocaust denial, and Soviet history.

    Negationism is also used by hate groups on the Internet, and its effects can be found described in literature (e.g. Nineteen Eighty-Four by George Orwell). In some countries historical revisionism (negationism) of certain historical events is a criminal offense. And i think its time that this law was applied to the Child Gulags of Ireland.

  • Victim/survivor of Goldenbridge Industrial School, Inchicore, Dublin 8 Eire.

    Thanks, Andrew, for the information. I am indeed sentient of the subsequent author who has/is in the business of distorting history per se. As he was recently discussed in a comment thread that I habitually visit. I should have in fact made the same connection with Rory Connor. Nevertheless, I did not due to the personal Goldenbridge absorbency factor of subject matter that Rhoary as per usual deems to attacks us on at proverbial alliancesupport.org. Search: Goldenbridge, on the latter site for the elongated Rory Connor claptrap version. My mind always goes back to the past in Goldenbridge whenever this ex- seminarian discusses it. His disparaging, denigrating way gets my manacles up.

    The author in question above is none other than David Irving. His status as an historian has been widely discredited because of controversy arising from his noted ‘Holocaust Denial’ and misrepresentation of historical sources during an unsuccessful libel case brought against American historian Deborah Lipstadt and Penguin books in 1998. An Austrian court found that he is “anti Semitic and racist and that he was associated with right wing extremists who provoke neo-Nazism. The judge also ruled that Irving had “for his own ideological reasons persistently and deliberately misrepresented and manipulated historical evidence.” He served a prison sentence in Austria from/to Feb/Dec, 2006 for glorifying and identifying with the German Nazi party. Which is a crime in Austria – (under section 3g of the Verbotesgesetz law) the Austrians for ‘Holocaust Denial’ did not explicitly prosecute him – as the offence was committed in 1989 and Holocaust Denial Law did not exist until 1992. But prosecutors filed new charges on two sections after Irving was expelled.( Wiki sourced)

    I will look to the bigger picture, in future, when reading the twisted, illegitimate drivel (about Victims/survivors of institutional abuse) that Rory Connor usually pens on alliancesupport.org.
    I am also suffice it to post, forlornly, aware of the Japanese Comfort Women, having on my local site learned about it from very highly educated caring people. They discussed it at great length. I can so much empathise and equate with these women. I know that they have relentlessly being trying to get their story on to the Japanese school curriculum. “One important argument revisionists use to oppose the mainstream conclusions about the abuse of comfort women is to question the credibility of testimony given but comfort women. Hata and other historians claim that the former comfort women’s testimony is inconsistent and unreliable – making it therefore – invalid…For example, some self – identified victims state that somebody like a soldier kidnapped them, but they did not know who they were. (Wiki). It unerringly reminds me of what we (who were against our own will incarcerated in Ireland’s Industrial School’s of the past) to name a few, such as Goldenbridge, Artane, Kilkenny, Daingean and Letterfrack have been going through for the past ten years and the nonsense we have had to listen to from certain shady elements of Irish society. I reckon that the religious orders of Ireland are monetarily funding Rory Connor’s Historical Revisionist classes. I know a few people who have decided to do history classes at Trinity College, Dublin. Next time we have our usual cupan tee I shall quiz them and ask them to explain to me –all about “Negation-ism”. Ahem! I wonder, will I from them get a negative reaction? Victim/survivor of St. Vincent’s Industrial School, Inchicore, Dublin. 8 Ireland.

  • Victim/survivor of Goldenbridge, Industrial School, Dublin, 8 Eire

    Taken from alliancesupport.org. Spin-doctor Rhoary!

    “We are a large group of past pupils from St. Kyran’s Rathdrum – during the period of 1960-1989. We wish to express our deepest concern and upset at recent media reports about Sr Xaveria.

    She is not a cruel person.”

    1) Just to clarify it for the record, with respect of this paragraph of a letter which was in 1996 drawn up by a solicitor [Binchy] of which can by readers be viewed on alliancesupport.org. Sister Xaveria went in “1963” to St. Kyran’s Rathdrum, Co Wicklow, Eire. In addition, NOT in “1960”! Just in case, one gets that impression from the particle of the above letter. Her supporters cannot therefore speak for her for those three years. I have up further above explained to readers some of the reasons why I think Sister Xaveria changed when she went to St. Kyran’s. To briefly reiterate she had absolutely no choice! The open environment she found herself in saw to all of that! Nonetheless, a leopard does not too easily change its spots. So I would not be too inwardly assured that there was a sudden total transformation to that of her ‘cruel’character and reign in Goldenbridge. We have here albeit only her supporters side of the story to make judgment.

    “She is not a cruel person.”

    2) I note that the solicitor used the word “is” as opposed to “was.” Binchy after all drew up the letter in 1996 – and the date that her supporters were last in St Kyran’s was in 1989. So how could they speak for her [then] ‘present’ [1996] position? Unless, of course, that is – that they were/are her friends to that/this day. It was common for ‘pets’ only to visit the sisters for years afterwards when they left their respective institutions, [not orphanages as some like to refer to them]. They were ‘the only ones’ who with them maintained contact. Some even had life long contact. Some also sadly became very highly disturbed because of the abnormal interest that was by the sisters in them taken.

    To conclude, Sister Xaveria was a very ‘cruel person’ to children in Goldenbridge.

    SR. Xaveria also had her pets in Goldenbridge.

    It would to me be unsurprising if she did not continue to have pets during her time in Rathdrum.

    I would also not be too daunted to hear that the supporters of Sr. Xaveria were also employed by her.

    Victim/survivor of St. Vincent’s Industrial School, Goldenbridge, Inchicore, Dublin, 8 Eire.

  • It would be interesting, to say the least, if it WAS revealed how many of these “pets” made applications to the Residential Institutions Redress Board(RIRB). One group formed for the express purpose of denigrating survivors of the Institutions had to fold when it was revealed that many of its members applied to the RIRB for compensation for the abuse THEY suffered in the Institutions!

  • carrie

    i like many others have just finished kathy’s book you poor souls. at least there is a tiny ray of hope that these people of the cloth will rot in hell for all eternity. to kathy i hope you read this what a strong person you are so much love for others you carry yet you were shown so little just know that all who have read your book send you endless love i know this is no compensation i hope the grave stone is finally excepted because all those poor women and children diserved so much better i just wish there was some way that we could help and kathy i just want to hug you and all those women who fell at the hands of those evil nuns and priests god bless the maggies everyone of you

  • my comments are to be found at public inquiry under the following headings”whats new”whos watching the watchers”unanswered questions”be very afraid”hope to contribute to this site if allowed in the near future.slan

  • kathy obeirne

    thank you to all that has spoak your minds about my book dont ever tell from kathy obeirne

  • Victim/survivor of Goldenbridge Industrial School Inchicore, Dublin 8

    OK a final point. The main reason why the Church ORIGINALLY “fought all (actually most) allegations tooth and nail” is that most are false. You don’t have to take my word for it. See two essays by the British cultural historian Richard Webster on his website i.e. “States of Fear, the Redress Board and Ireland’s Folly” and “The Christmas Spirit in Ireland”. In the latter essay he suggests that up to 90% of allegations are false. (I suggest that the % is even higher).

    I strongly suspect that Webster does not have much time for the Catholic Church. However he has written extensively about false allegations against (lay) social workers in the UK and he recognises the similarities with the witch-hunt in Ireland. This is another case of rivals being brought together by the recognition that an enemy wants to destroy them both!

  • Excuse me but the Catholic Church didn’t “ORIGINALLY fought all (actually most) allegations tooth and nail” !

    They covered the abuse up. They moved the abuser from Institution to Institution, from parish to parish, from diocese to diocese to diocese and from one country to another. Thereby facilitating the abuser and by this singular action became complicit in the abuse of children.

    People who were in the Institutions don’t actually don’t have to make any allegations of abuse while illegally detained in these Institutions. The fact of them being in those places is suffucient proof of abuse because their detention was actually ILLEGAL and was only the FIRST ABUSE committed against the children.

    And hasn’t Webster himself labelled ex-residents as criminals! He complains about police ‘trawling’ which starts with the suspect (or an allegation) and then attempts to find the crime. Yet these same police are not allowed to see the records of the religious orders which have in them names and dates of the abused and the abusers.

  • Hi Survivor from Goldenbridge

    It’s typical of Rhory that he would see no crime in the incarceration of children – and have as the jailers of these children dysfunctional men and women who are avowedly celibate. Celibacy in Roman Catholic terms actually means ‘abstention by vow from marriage’ so I reckon that they use ‘jesuitical thinking’ when it comes to abusing children!

    I’ve read Webster’s book and the opinions he has in it on the abuses committed against children in the Institutions in Ireland contain the same prejudices that were exposed at the Commission to Inquire into Child Abuse. At the Commission we were labelled (by the Christian Brothers) as the children of ‘ne’er do wells’.

    So it’s fairly obvious that his sources for that particular strand of his book could only have come from the religious orders and their friends. And he has the cheek to call himself an HISTORIAN!

    Reminds me of David Irving the ‘author’ who writes reams of stuff denying the Holocaust ever happened.

  • Victim/survivor St. Vincent’s Industrial School, Goldenbridge, Inchicore, Dublin 8 Ireland.

    The passion of passionate Placidus

    “The study that accompanied the revision in 1969 of the Roman Catholic calendar of saints’ states: “Saint Placidus, the disciple of Saint Benedict, is now universally distinguished from Saint Placidus, the unknown martyr in Sicily”.

    I am scratching my head wondering as to which one of the two demised saintly creatures could it possibly be who was resurrected in the guise of Rhoary?

  • Ambrose

    Possibly Saint Penile Distemper

  • Victim/survivor of institutional child abuse.

    Perhaps Saint Penile needs a good dose of Tramadol for his distemper!

    As he might, thereafter, be less inclined to bother the media and himself with all this obsessional child sexual abuse kit. But then again…?

  • houghton

    I strongly suspect that my grandmother, who died in New York, was in a Magdalen Asylum during the 1920’s. My mother said very little about her; evidently my grandmother was mentally ill, alcoholic, and promiscuous. My mother severed contact with my grandmother before I was born. But I know that my grandmother was born in England, that she was abandoned by her own mother, and that she was sent to a “convent” by her father when she was about 10 years old. She left this place at about 16,and had her first child soon after. I do not know if that child was conceived in the UK or in the US. My question: Is there any way to access admission records at the Asylums to see if my grandmother’s name is listed? Suggestions?

  • past pupil

    bless you all

  • Victim/survivor of Goldenbridge Industrial School, Inchicore, Dublin 8, Eire

    Past pupil – more like past inmate, would you not agree? Sorry, do not mean to be so derogatory. Thanks for your blessing, well, as long as it is not given with holy water, or the sign of the cross.

  • dd

    hia, ave just finished dont ever tell, i think the book was really good i couldnt put it down, its awful wot happened to that poor women, i was shocked to learn wot nuns were like u wouldnt think they would behave in such an apauling manner, its disgusting that people like them were able to care for young people

  • “Past inmate” is right. Child prisoner too. Heard this description on RTE Radio yesterday: Former attendees of industrial Schools!