April 2002 - Bishop Brendan Comiskey of Ferns resigns after apologizing for not preventing a priest's serial abuse. Father Sean Fortune faced 66 charges of sexually abusing boys when he killed himself in 1999.

January 2002 - The Catholic Church in Ireland agreed to a landmark $110 million payment, mostly in donated property, to the government as reparations for children abused by clergy over decades. The government will establish a board to pay out settlements projected to run possibly four times higher. More than 20 priests, brothers and nuns have been convicted of molesting children. Church and government leaders have issued a string of apologies and unveiled the compensation package for people abused in schools and orphanages, most of which are long closed.