‘I would walk a thousand miles to be here to witness this day,’ the institutional abuse survivor said after Stormont’s apology


One of the survivors of a church-run organization in Northern Ireland said the apology issued by North Korea’s ministers today caused him to “shut down”.

atrick O’Rourke (78 years old) was 5 years old when he and his four siblings were taken from their family home in Killybegs, Co Donegal, separated and placed in different facilities.

Mr. O’Rourke was taken to the Termonbacca boys’ home in Derry, where he remained until the age of 16.

The institution is run by the religious organization Sisters of Nazareth and Mr O’Rourke and others were subjected to physical, sexual and emotional abuse during their time there.

I said Independent.ie that he was “in tears” at today’s event because family members did not live long enough to see the apology.

“Four people in my family have passed away, they will never get justice. They will find peace in another world and I am a little emotional today,” he said.

Mr O’Rourke describes himself as a “very active” person and after leaving home he joined the Irish Defense Force, where he received military honors, and he brought people out. Northern Ireland during the Troubles.

“I am not angry or bitter. I am one of these people, no matter what you do to me, I will forgive. We suffered a lot, you know. I’m suffering at this point, but I’m trying to leave it behind,” he said.

“You know the old adage, ‘However, the day is long, the evening finally comes’. Well, that evening has come now, so it has. ”

Mr O’Rourke said politicians from across Stormont Congress had worked towards an apology today and while some survivors felt former Stormont ministers should also apologize, he was “very I’m glad we’re all together.”

Mr O’Rourke and his late brother Joseph presented evidence of abuse they suffered to the Historic Institutional Abuse Inquiry (HIAI) in Banbridge, Co Down, eight years ago.

He told the inquest that he served the masses in a nearby girls’ home, where his three sisters were kept and that he “never knew they were there”.

“That day when I came back from Banbridge, it was like someone hit me with a sledgehammer. For the first time in my life I almost fell. he said.

“I don’t blame all the nuns for what happened. There are some good nuns, and I said it. “

On Friday, Mr O’Rourke and other survivors watched in the boardroom as a one-minute silence was held, before five ministers, representing each of Stormont’s main parties, delivered on behalf of the Government. apology.

A public apology was suggested in HIAI’s final report, published more than five years ago.

Representatives from the six foundations that ran the facilities where the abuse occurred are also apologizing, the De La Salle Orders, the Sisters of Nazareth, the Sisters of St Louis and the Sisters of the Good Shepherd, as well as the Barnardo and Irish Church Quest.

Archbishop Eamon Martin also reiterated the Church of Ireland’s apology to survivors of the historic abuse.

He said: “On behalf of the Catholic Church in Ireland, today I would like to reiterate my immeasurable apology to all those who have endured their terrible experience in Church-run facilities. executive committee and their loved ones.

“Today is a day of mixed emotions for them. Their response to today’s apologies must be heard and respected. Words are not enough and will never undo the harm done.”

After the events at Stormont, Mr O’Rourke said he had left before the phone call and instead took “a long Edward Carson walk in the rain” before boarding a bus to the city centre. Belfast Street.

He plans to return to his home in Rush, North County Dublin, for the weekend, where he will go swimming at nearby Rush beach, which he does every day.

Mr O’Rourke said “you have to move on” and he was grateful he was able to stand in Stormont today on behalf of his deceased loved ones.

“No matter how bad you are, there are always worse people. I am grateful for so many things. I’ve had a long enough life with my resume. Many survivors did not live that long. he said.

“We’re not history, you know, but I’m happy to see this day. I am thinking of my family, and I must be here for them. I would walk a thousand miles to be here and witness this day. “

https://www.independent.ie/irish-news/id-walk-one-thousand-miles-to-be-here-to-see-this-day-says-survivor-of-institutional-abuse-after-stormont-apology-41437774.html ‘I would walk a thousand miles to be here to witness this day,’ the institutional abuse survivor said after Stormont’s apology

Fry Electronics Team

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