Mad monk who disrupted church services avoids jail
Brother Damon Kelly, above, a member of a bizarre Catholic cult known as the Black Hermits, was warned that he would be jailed if he ever repeated his compulsive threatening and abusive behaviour.
The warning, according to this report, came from Sheriff Thomas Ward who heard that Kelly barged his way into an Argyllshire church service screaming:
This is a synagogue of sin.
Dunoon Sheriff Court heard that the deranged Kelly charged into St John’s Presbyterian Church in Dunoon dressed in black robes shouting and ranting in front of shocked churchgoers. Hours later he forced his way into a nearby as Church of Scotland kirk in Kirn.
Kelly claimed he was “doing God’s work” by disrupting the Sunday prayers.
When he appeared in court yesterday charged with behaving in a threatening or abusive manner, the 54-year-old began arguing with Sheriff Ward – but was told to shut up.
The sheriff said:
This is not a conversation. I am speaking, and you have to listen. If you do this again and you cause this type of trouble again, no matter what your views, you will go to jail.
You can express your views any way you want so long as it is within the law.
Kelly interrupted again to say:
May I ask a question?
But Sheriff Ward replied:
I am not here to answer questions, that is not the way this works.
He ordered Kelly to carry out 180 hours of unpaid work within nine months.
Kelly is one of three Black Hermits based in Corby Northamptonshire. According to a Catholic Herald report in 2015, the Black Hermits were founded by Father Fr Stephen Joseph de Kerdrel, a former Capuchin novice-master in 1999 for young men seeking “a more primitive form of [religious] life”. The two Brothers were later joined by Sister Colette, a former A&E consultant surgeon.
The lunatic trio were based in St Patrick’s Church in the Diocese of Northampton but were evicted last year because of Kelly’s behaviour. Brother Kelly had been arrested ten times for travelled around the country giving out leaflets condemning homosexuality and abortion.
Last year he appeared before magistrates in Leicester after rowing with a married lesbian couple as he distributed homophobic leaflets.
When the couple challenged him about their contents, he told them:
We used to burn people like you.
When they tried to return a leaflet to Kelly, he told them:
Keep it, urinate on it, defecate on it.
A fortnight later, he returned to their home and posted a letter addressed:
To the witches from the monk.
According to Father de Kerdrel, Bishop Peter Doyle of Northampton, who invited the hermits to live at the presbytery in 2011, said they had been given their marching orders for bringing the diocese “into disrepute”.
Hat tip: Angela_K.