Church official: Farrell 'should never have been made a priest'

Farrell had psychological problems

A priest being examined by the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse was an "odd bod" with a narcissistic personality who should never have been accepted into the priesthood, according to a Church official, reports the ABC.

The Commission is examining how the dioceses at Armidale, in northern NSW, and Parramatta, in Sydney's west, responded to allegations made against then-Father John Joseph Farrell.

Msgr John Usher, who spent 20 years as director of the welfare agency Centacare, said he interviewed Farrell for an hour in 1990 and found his ongoing need to spend time with children a grave concern.

During that meeting, Farrell was purportedly highly critical of the Bishop and priests in Armidale.

"I detected that he had a serious psychiatric illness," Msgr Usher said.

He told the Commission he recommended Farrell see a psychiatrist with experience in dealing with sexual offending by priests.

"I was concerned for this man, Farrell.

"He was an 'odd bod' . . . and you know my thinking was 'this man should never have been made a priest. If he keeps asking for . . . another appointment or whatever, a bishop should not do that until they sort out his psychological problems'."

By then, Farrell had been stripped of his faculties as a priest.

TRUTH JUSTICE AND HEALING COUNCIL

Update 122 - Royal Commission - Farrell - Day 7

FULL COVERAGE

Father John Farrell had 'serious psychological problems' (ABC)

Senior church figures under police investigation, royal commission told (Fairfax Media)

Senior Catholic figure questioned by police over paedophile priest (AAP/Guardian)

RELATED COVERAGE

Tony Whitlam sues ABC over 7.30 ‘cover-up’ (The Australian)

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