Thursday, March 3, 2016

Roman Catholic priest in Northern Ireland is caught on video, snorting cocaine--in his apartment full of Nazi memorabilia

A night of jocularity in the life of a Roman Catholic priest in Northern Ireland--and wouldn't you know it, by horrible coincidence, the only time in his life he uses drugs, he gets caught on video. At least he wasn't molesting boys. Whatever happened to the kind of priest that Pat O'Brien and Bing Crosby used to play in the movies?

As reported by Ruth Warrander of the Dublin newspaper The Irish Sun, February 28, 2016:

AN IRISH priest has been caught on camera snorting a line of cocaine at a party in his house on church grounds.

Father Stephen Crossan, 37, was seen sniffing a large line of the drug through a note while chatting to a pal in a room full of Nazi memorabilia.

He places a cigarette in an ashtray and seems to say “I shouldn’t” before snorting white powder off a plate in a video obtained by the Irish Sun on Sunday.

The respected Father’s drug use came at the end of a two-day bender that ended with him inviting friends back to his parish home.

Crossan has admitted taking drugs. He confessed: “It was just the one night and that was it. I do not have an issue with drugs.”

A source said revellers went back to Fr Crossan’s home at 11am for seven hours after they had been asked to leave another house party.

They were shocked to see Nazi memorabilia including flags, hats and a Maltese falcon on a plinth on his mantelpiece.

A source said: “Stephen said he was a social worker but told us the truth when we realised he lived on church grounds.

“He had been drinking beers and Jack Daniels as well as taking coke.

“The house was really lovely, with plush carpets and antique furniture everywhere.

“But we were pretty stunned to see all the Nazi stuff everywhere — badges, hats and flags. He showed me all these pins — there must have been about a hundred badges.

“It was all over the house, it reminded me of that Nazi room in Father Ted — I told him that and he laughed it off.

“At one point Stephen put on a cap and did the Nazi salute but he was just messing around.”

The source continued: “There was a big rail of all of his gowns — we tried some of them on and danced about.
As reported by BBC News, March 1, 2016:

Police have begun an investigation after footage emerged of a Catholic priest caught on video snorting what appeared to be cocaine.

Fr Stephen Crossan is reported to have snorted coke through a £10 note during a night of drinking in July 2015 in Banbridge, County Down.

He was in a room containing Nazi memorabilia, and seemed to say "I shouldn't" as he snorted, the Sun on Sunday reported.

He has taken leave from the priesthood.

A spokesperson for the PSNI said: "Police are aware of the article in a Sunday newspaper and are making inquiries."

The bishop of Dromore said in a statement that he had no knowledge of the incident.

It allegedly occurred in the parochial house last July after a party.

The Sun on Sunday said it happened at what was then Fr Crossan's parish home in the grounds of St Patrick's Church, Banbridge, in July 2015.

Father Crossan told the newspaper that he took the drugs but said: "It was just the one night and that was it."

A source said that a group went to Fr Crossan's home after a party and found Nazi memorabilia including flags, hats and an eagle with a swastika on a plinth on his mantelpiece.

In his defence, Fr Crossan told the paper that he was not a Nazi and that he collected historical items from every country.

He said he had been on sick leave with depression at the time of the video and that he had since left the Church but was being backed by the parish.

In his statement, Bishop of Dromore John McAreavey said that Fr Crossan had asked for and been granted leave from his pastoral duties at Seapatrick parish in May 2015. He said he had been receiving counselling and was considering his future.

At the start of February 2016, the statement said that the priest had asked for an extended leave of absence from the priesthood.

Bishop McAreavey said he was concerned for the priest's health.

Fr Crossan is no longer living at the parochial house.

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