Tiger's image is burning bright on front pages. Unconfirmed reports are that the golfer and Elin Nordegren Woods rowed over an alleged affair, causing him to crash his car. The image of his enraged wife, brandishing one of his clubs and mistaking the car's rear window for a golf ball, brings illicit glee to golf widows everywhere. But Woods insists his wife "acted courageously when she saw I was hurt". Could be the truth – or that new "mental reservation" we've been hearing about elsewhere. Bishop of Limerick Donal Murray, whose "inexcusable" failure to protect children is detailed in the Murphy report, has no reservation in refusing to resign. He says he will 'be guided by the priests and people of the diocese'. Minister Willie O'Dea wants to guide him towards the door. Flood waters won't go either and the east of the country experiences what many Lee side and Shannon side homes have endured as the Liffey bursts its banks.
The Bishop of Limerick still remains high and dry. A local group of priests and laity supporting Murray say they are "convinced" of his "utter commitment to truth and justice". Victim support group One in Four expresses deep disappointment that leaders from church and state fail to grasp the fundamental finding of the Murphy report. Someone else not listening is Sepp Blatter. He's turned a deaf ear on the FAI's alleged private request to be named team no 33 at the World Cup – but lets everyone else in on what he thinks is a great joke. As FIFA president he considers himself very hands on –that's how he thinks soccer is played too. Bono is interviewed to mark World Aids Day, but can't resist referring to Fifa saying it's "not a giant bureaucracy that can't be turned around". He also gives Irish fans a derisory laugh with his expectation that FIFA will do the "really noble thing" and allow the Ireland squad play.
Public sector unions do a turnaround by deferring tomorrow's strike leaving schoolkids downcast at missing a day off, but workers with the prospect of gaining an extra 12 if unions accept unpaid leave rather than pay cuts. The deal may be the best the Taoiseach can get – he's running out of options quicker than a Gillette ad executive seeking a squeaky clean role model. Holy apparitions are not what they seem either: Dr Eamonn O'Donohue attributes the "unprecedented" and "very dangerous" increase in the eye condition solar retinopathy to people staring at the sun at Knock shrine. Big blinkers elsewhere in the church, but this time of the fiscal kind. "The biggest shower of bastards on the planet" is a Cork priest's assessment of the Revenue Commissioners after his name appeared on a list of tax defaulters. "The church believes priests, like anyone else, should pay taxes," a spokesman says. Oh good. Father Tadhg O'Donovan, with a property portfolio estimated to be worth millions, is very sorry – on his archbishop's instruction.
Tiger Woods probably never thought his voice message to Jaimee Grubbs would be made public either. The golfer apologises to his family on his website but without making it clear what his "transgress-ions" are. Now it's the turn of 20-year-old Ekaterina Ivanova whose 62-year-old 'boyfriend' Ronnie Wood has seemingly "gone ghetto" on her. The Rolling Stones guitarist is arrested on charges for her assault. The Sisters of Mercy pledge €128m in property and cash for victims of abuse in their care. This time, the transgressions were committed over decades.
Figures showing how much those in the Republic enjoy trekking to Newry are revealed, with the CSO announcing that Irish shoppers going north spent half a billion euro between June 2008 and June 2009. The public sector have one day less in the Buttercrane Centre as they're still caught up with pay negotiations closing at 2am on Friday morning with no sign of agreement. Swearing, tax-avoiding priest Tadhg O'Donovan books a date with Archbishop Dermot Clifford to discuss his remarks about those bastards in Revenue. They talk about reading out a statement at Saturday night mass to clear things up. That is, of course, if there's anyone left in the churches.
You Cannot Be Serious
"I would have to go back and examine in absolute detail what is in the Dublin report ... but I do know for a fact that some of the interpretation put on that and being placed against Bishop Murray is a misreading of the report." Bishop of Killaloe Dr Willie Walsh (left) bases his support for the Bishop of Limerick on 'someone' else's reading. He later said he regretted his remarks