The entrance to the site of a mass grave of hundreds of children who died in the former Bons Secours home for unmarried mothers is seen in Tuam, County Galway June 4, 2014.
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DUBLIN - Ireland's Roman Catholic Church told the order of nuns who ran the former home where a mass grave of almost 800 children was found that it must co-operate with any inquiry into the discovery.
Ireland is considering an investigation into what the government called a "deeply disturbing" discovery of an unmarked graveyard at a former home run by the Bon Secours Sister where 796 children died between 1925 and 1961.
The Archbishop of Tuam said that while it did not have any involvement in the running of the home, his diocese was horrified and saddened to learn of the scale of the number of children buried at the Church-run home.
"I can only begin to imagine the huge emotional wrench which the mothers suffered in giving up their babies for adoption or by witnessing their death. The pain and brokenness which they endured is beyond our capacity to understand," Archbishop Michael Neary said in a statement.
"Regardless of the time lapse involved this is a matter of great public concern which ought to be acted upon urgently."
The Bon Secours order was not available for comment.