Growing concern over religious

group in Ballagh


THERE IS growing concern in West Roscommon over activities involving a religious group, which claims to be part of the Catholic Church. However, this week the Bishop of Achonry, Most Rev. Dr. Brendan Kelly, distanced himself from the group, the Ballaghaderreen based Congregation Of Our Lady of Refuge, stating that it had “nothing to do with the Catholic Church” and “nothing to do with the Achonry Diocese.”
According to Mike Garde, the Director of Dialogue Ireland, he had been contacted by members of the public in relation to concerns over the establishment of the group in the Ballaghaderreen area.roscommonherald

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Roscommon Herald

“We have been contacted by members of the public in relation to the establishment of this organisation and we are investigating these concerns. “We get calls from people on a nearly daily basis, and in the case of Roscommon we are investigating the concerns raised about Ballaghaderreen’s Congregation Of Our Lady of Refuge.”

“We contacted Bishop Brendan Kelly, the Bishop of Achonry, in May to see if he was aware of the existence of this church, which claims to be part of the Catholic Church and he told us he was not aware of it. These concerns need to be investigated,” explained Mr Garde. Dialogue Ireland is an independent trust that seeks to promote people’s freedom to make informed choices about religious, spiritual and philosophical beliefs.
It is understood that the congregation was established less than a year ago by a Ballaghaderreen businessman and has only a small number of members.

The concerns regarding the organisation were raised prior to details emerging from a property in London last week where three women, including a 57-year old Irish woman were held for thirty years.
“As an organisation assisting the victims of cultism, we are contacted every week by members of the public about concerns over cults from all across Ireland and the rest of the world. However, since the story emerged in London last week, the amount of
calls we have received has been overwhelming. We try to help people clarify whether the problems they are encountering result from involvement with cultism or other issues. We refer people on to counsellors who understand the issues related to cult
involvement,” he said.

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