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Irish Church officials to monitor inaccurate media reports regarding Church

.- The Catholic Communications Office, an agency of the Irish Bishops Conference, has stated that it will be proactive in monitoring statements made about the Church in the future and will file complaints with the Broadcasting Complaints Commission if inaccurate comments are made, reported The Universe.

The decision comes after the editor of the Irish Daily Star, the second-biggest selling newspaper in Ireland, made what were described as “exaggerated” comments about the Church on Ireland public service network RTE's Prime Time program.

"We should have had less privacy in respect to clerical abuse of children, when they were screaming in every presbytery in the country,” said Irish Daily Star editor Gerard Colleran.

In a complaint filed with Ireland’s Broadcasting Complaints Commission, Martin Long, director of Catholic Communications Office, said the comments had hurt many people, both lay and religious.

"These words were false, slanderous and amount to an allegation against every parish-based priest in the country," he said.

The commission rejected Long’s complaint, saying that child abuse was a serious issue which should be dealt with in a fair and balanced manner, but the statement was made on a live discussion program and the presenter could not have foreseen it.

The commission concluded that although Colleran had spoken in an exaggerated manner, his comments were not intended to have caused offence.

Long told The Universe that despite the complaint’s rejection, the process had been "a useful exercise." 

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