Monsignor Hamill steps aside over historical allegation

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Top Lurgan cleric Monsignor Aidan Hamill has ‘voluntarily’ stepped aside while an historical child safeguarding allegation is investigated.

Massgoers in the Lurgan area were told that Monsignor Hamill, who is also the Parish Priest, had stood aside from ministry and parish duties.

He is the Parish Priest of St Peter’s and St Paul’s in Lurgan.

The Monsignor also acted up in his capacity as Vicar General of the Diocese of Dromore as the administrator when Bishop John McAreavey too a temporary break from his duties in 2012.

As yet the nature of the allegation has not transpired.

Originally from Magheralin, Monsignor Hamill was ordained in his home parish in 1969.

A statement issued on behalf of Bishop John McAreavey – Bishop of Dromore, said: “Recently I was made aware of an historical complaint against a priest of this diocese. In accordance with both national and diocesan child protection policy and procedures the relevant statutory authorities were informed.

“The matter was also reported to the designated person responsible for safeguarding procedures within the diocese. The priest against whom the allegation has been made has voluntarily stood aside from ministry and parish duties.

“As an independent risk assessment is now currently being carried out by Social Services it would be inappropriate to make further comment until their report is complete.

“Safeguarding the welfare of children, young people and vulnerable adults is of paramount concern for the Diocese of Dromore. I ask you to pray for everyone concerned.”