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Squatter priest challenges new cardinal

A 62 year old Scottish parish priest is refusing to leave his presbytery after he resigned following clashes with parishioners.

Cardinal-designate Keith O'Brien invited the priest to his home twice to try to sort out a row over his future. But Fr John Robinson stormed out of both meetings before a conclusion could be reached.

Fr Robinson resigned in August after parishioners complained that he had bullied and shouted at them. He admitted he had been branded a danger to local schoolchildren because of his fiery temper. Archbishop O'Brien now wants him to rest and to leave his four-bedroom presbytery across from the church.

But Fr Robinson is refusing to budge until he gets guarantees about his future duties, income and pension. He admitted to the press that he had used "choice language" to his superiors. But he vowed to exercise "squatter's rights" until he wins the fight over his future.

Church spokesman Peter Kearney said: "There does appear to be a difficulty in persuading Father Robinson to vacate the parish house.

Daily Record

Priest on the move (Peeblesshire News 19/8/03)
Pastures new for popular Peebles priest (Peeblesshire News 23/8/01)
Serious message as Father John is kidnapped! (Peeblesshire News 21/6/01)
Archdiocese of St Andrew's & Edinburgh | Archbishop

9 Oct 2003