Cardinal Quits ‘Public Life’ of Church Over Sexual Conduct

March 3 (Bloomberg) -- Cardinal Keith O’Brien, who was Britain’s most senior Catholic cleric, said he plans to spend the rest of his life in retirement after admitting sexual conduct below the standards expected of a priest.

The cardinal, who resigned his post, said he will play no further part in the public life of the Catholic Church in Scotland.

“In recent days certain allegations which have been made against me have become public,” O’Brien said in a statement on the church’s website. “Initially, their anonymous and non-specific nature led me to contest them. However, I wish to take this opportunity to admit that there have been times that my sexual conduct has fallen below the standards expected of me as a priest, archbishop and cardinal.”

He said he apologized and asked forgiveness of those he has “offended.”

“To the Catholic Church and people of Scotland, I also apologize,” he said

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Mike Harrison at mharrison5@bloomberg.net