THE ARCHDIOCESE of Liverpool has refuted claims that Archbishop Patrick Kelly is over burdened and on the verge of a breakdown, writes Christina White.
Reports that the archbishop could no longer "lead his people" were dismissed as "out of all proportion" by the archdiocese.
Concerns were raised after the archbishop issued a pastoral letter in which he asked the diocese to "pray for me". He spoke of being "burdened", and said he would be going on holiday and on sabbatical. A Catholic newspaper suggested that the trip had not come as a surprise to many priests and had been expected for some time.
But a spokesman for the archdiocese condemned the reports. "The article has blown the pastoral letter out of all proportion. This just happens to be the longest break the archbishop has had for30 years. He is absolutely fine."
The archdiocese insisted that the six weeks sabbatical was arranged over 12 months ago and did not reflect any particular urgency for time away from episcopal duties.