A Catholic priest in Co Antrim has accused Cardinal Desmond Connell and other senior bishops of treating the victims of clerical child sex abuse with "wicked contempt".
In a letter to the Irish News, Lisburn priest Fr Patrick McCafferty said the Cardinal and other bishops are unfit to lead the Catholic Church in Ireland and should follow the lead of Cardinal Bernard Law and resign. Cardinal Law, the Archbishop of Boston, resigned last week over his failure to adequately handle scores of abuse allegations against priests in his charge.
Earlier this year, Cardinal Connell admitted he had made mistakes in dealing with abuse allegations and he vowed to co-operate with any inquiries into the matter.
In his letter to the Irish News, Fr McCafferty accused the Cardinal and other church leaders of "the most stunning arrogance and breathtaking indifference to real human anguish".
Despite the increasing pressure on Cardinal Connell, many abuse victims want him to stay in his post until the current crisis is resolved because an instant resignation would leave many questions unanswered.