The Government's decision to delay publication of the report into sexual abuse by priests in the Catholic Archdiocese of Dublin has been condemned by the campaigner who first exposed church cover-ups in the capital.

Andrew Madden said ministers referred the Commission's Report back to the High Court despite having it since last July.

He criticised a comment by Minister for Children Barry Andrews that there was 'a material fact' that had not been brought to the attention of the High Court, and the Government wanted to seek the court's direction on the matter.

He said the Cabinet had had plenty of time to detail its concerns over ongoing criminal proceedings and present them to the High Court on two previous occasions.

He also recalled that last Thursday the High Court issued a very clear order regarding publication which a child could have understood and have actioned within an hour.

This afternoon publication of the report was postponed following a decision in the High Court to adjourn until tomorrow week the hearing of an application by the Minister for Justice, Dermot Ahern.

Mr Justice Paul Gilligan said the application had been made with respect to an issue which had not been raised at hearings on the report earlier this month.

It had been widely expected that the Minister would publish most of the Murphy Commission's report before this weekend.

Chapter 19

Last week the High Court ruled that the report of the Commission of Investigation into sexual abuse allegations in the Dublin archdiocese could be published - but all references to one person must be removed.

The commission investigated how clerical child sex abuse allegations involving a sample of 46 priests were handled by Church and State authorities in Dublin between 1 January 1975 and 30 April 2004.

Some of the cases involve men who are facing court proceedings.

Its report was referred to the High Court by Minister Ahern in July.

Under the Commission of Investigation Act, the minister must seek directions from the High Court if it is felt the report could prejudice court proceedings.

Mr Justice Paul Gilligan ruled that the report could be published but that a specified part, Chapter 19, might prejudice court proceedings.

He directed that Chapter 19, or references in the report to the person who is the subject of Chapter 19, could not be published unless otherwise directed by the court.

His judgment lists 22 references to that person which must be removed before the report is published.

Justice Gilligan said this part of the report could be mentioned to the court again on 5 May next year.