Pope accepts resignation of disgraced anti-gay Cardinal Keith O’Brien

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The Pope has formally accepted the decision of disgraced Cardinal Keith O’Brien to resign all his duties.

The disgraced British Cardinal will not be stripped of his title, but has renounced the rights and privileges that come with it.

Cardinal O’Brien resigned as Archbishop of St Andrew’s and Edinburgh in 2013 after admitting to “inappropriate sexual behaviour” with several priests.

In November 2012, he was named ‘Bigot of the Year’ by gay rights charity Stonewall due to his staunch opposition to LGBT rights and marriage equality.

Previously he had stated that same-sex relationships were “harmful to the physical, mental and spiritual wellbeing” and compared equal marriage to slavery and child abuse.

It was also alleged Cardinal O’Brien had a long-standing physical relationship with one of the men whose complaints about his conduct sparked his resignation.

According to reports, the Cardinal will have no participation in any public, religious or civil events.

He said in a statement: “I wish to repeat the apology which I made to the Catholic church and the people of Scotland some two years ago now on 3 March 2013.

“I then said that there have been times that my sexual conduct has fallen below the standards expected of me. For that I am deeply sorry.

“I thank Pope Francis for his fatherly care of me and of those I have offended in any way.

“I will continue to play no part in the public life of the Church in Scotland; and will dedicate the rest of my life in retirement, praying especially for the Archdiocese of St Andrews and Edinburgh, for Scotland, and for those I have offended in any way.”