The Irish Catholic Church nails its blood-soaked colours to the mast. Continue reading
Tag Archives: Ireland
He’s really God, dressed up.
Children at a north Kerry school who became upset after a visiting priest implied there was no Santa Claus have been reassured by parents and staff that the priest was mistaken, and Santa does indeed exist.
Weird old bearded man you’ve never seen, lives in a place that doesn’t exist, constantly watches everyone’s behaviour, descends on people all over the world but never shows up on radar.. of course he doesn’t exist. Are you kidding?
The Irish Catholic Bishops have seen fit to clarify the church’s view on gynecology given Savita Halappanavar’s death from sepsis at 17 weeks in her pregnancy and the concern that evacuating her uterus was delayed because the fetus still had a heart beat. The full statement is here, but this is the excerpt I find most troubling:
- Whereas abortion is the direct and intentional destruction of an unborn baby and is gravely immoral in all circumstances, this is different from medical treatments which do not directly and intentionally seek to end the life of the unborn baby. Current law and medical guidelines in Ireland allow nurses and doctors in Irish hospitals to apply this vital distinction in practice while upholding the equal right to life of both a mother and her unborn baby.
I spent quite sometime trying to understand how one could possibly translate this statement into medical care. I’ve been a doctor for 22 years and an OB/GYN for 17 years and I admit that I am at a bit of a loss…
That’s polite medical-speak for ‘these people are barking mad’.
Hey Bernie! Because of your insane beliefs, a beautiful healthy young woman is dead. How do you sleep at night?
A YOUNG woman died of septicaemia in Ireland after Catholic doctors refused to terminate her miscarriage because abortion was against the country’s law and religious beliefs.
Savita Halappanavar, 31, died last month in University Hospital Galway after three days of agony, the Irish Times reported on Wednesday.
Doctors told her she was losing her 17-week pregnancy, as her cervix had dilated and the amniotic sac had broken, and that the foetus would not survive.
Her husband told the newspaper she begged for birth to be induced but was told this was not possible because the foetal heartbeat was still present “and this is a Catholic country”.
Praveen Halappanavar said that his wife, a Hindu, said, “I am neither Irish nor Catholic,” but they said there was nothing they could do.”
Mr Halappanavar said his wife was left in extreme pain for another two-and-a-half days until the foetal heartbeat stopped. The dead foetus was then removed but Mrs Halappanavar was soon taken to intensive care where she died on October 28.
Update: An inquest reveals more details of this poor woman’s horrific ordeal.
THE Vatican’s most senior representative in Australia failed to co-operate with a government inquiry into child sexual abuse in Ireland and once invoked diplomatic immunity in a civil suit in which a victim was suing the church.
Archbishop Giuseppe Lazzarotto assumed the job of apostolic nuncio in 2008, a role equivalent to the Vatican’s ambassador.
He had served in the same role in Ireland but left before the government released an inquiry into sexual abuse in the Dublin archdiocese, the 2009 Murphy Report. The report criticised Archbishop Lazzarotto for not responding to a 2007 request to provide the inquiry with evidence of abuse.
The Censorship of Publications Board, made up of five people appointed by the Minister for Justice, is in charge of deciding whether a book can be banned or not, but it can’t act on its own accord – it has to receive a complaint before it can assess whether a book should be added to the list of prohibited publications.
Right now, there’s a grand total of zero books banned for being indecent or obscene. Books about abortion, on the other hand, are a different matter.
Eight books are currently banned in Ireland for providing information on how to procure abortion. Three of the books are explicitly about abortion: …
Unexpectedly, four of the other five are sex guides….
…while most books are unbanned 12 years after they were first banned, the legislation governing censoring books brought in a different rule for abortion books which means the 12 year rule doesn’t apply. Because of this, all eight of the books will remain banned indefinitely until someone appeals the banning.
Far more magazines than books are banned in Ireland, but for much more varied reasons. 266 magazines are currently banned in Ireland; a strange mixture of hardcore pornography, crime magazines from the 1950s and 60s, and ones which inexplicably fell foul of the censor at the time (Broadway and Hollywood Movies, Eye: People and Pictures, and Health and Efficiency magazines are all banned).
Your taxes at work, keeping Dublin dirt-free.
The Catholic primate of all-Ireland has said that he will not resign as Church leader despite revelations in the BBC’s This World programme.
It found Cardinal Sean Brady had names and addresses of those being abused by paedophile priest Brendan Smyth.
However, he did not pass on those details to police or parents.
Cardinal Brady said he accepted he was part of “an unhelpful culture of deference and silence in society, and the Church”.
“With others, I feel betrayed that those who had the authority in the Church to stop Brendan Smyth failed to act on the evidence I gave them,” he said in a statement on Wednesday.
“However, I also accept that I was part of an unhelpful culture of deference and silence in society, and the Church, which thankfully is now a thing of the past.”
So enabling the perpetration of rape and violent assault on children is ‘unhelpful’, is it, bedad? What a thing it is to have an education!
Today FM radio presenter Ray D’Arcy has refused to apologise for controversial comments criticising the Catholic Church.
Speaking on his show this morning, the Kildare native said his comments on Friday, where he said that “the Catholic Church, in many ways, had f***** up this country”, had been aimed at the Church hierarchy, and not “people like my mother who is a devout Christian”.
While Mr D’Arcy repeated his apology for use of offensive language at an inappropriate time, he said the apology demanded by the Catholic Communications Office for his statement “would not be forthcoming”.
“There won’t be a retraction,” Mr D’Arcy said, reiterating that it was the Catholic hierarchy and the “litany” of abuse scandals and other issues to which he was referring in his original comments.
And on the same website, on the same day:
A Californian diocese has agreed to pay $3.75m (€2.8m) to a man abused as a child by the Tipperary priest who last week fled the US to return to Ireland.
Not ‘fucked up’, by hundreds — maybe thousands — of violent child abusers in schools, orphanages, convents and monasteries? What would you call it, then? ‘Mildly inconvenienced’?
Update 2012-05-03: Now we know: ‘unhelpful‘.
A Fine Gael TD said today that fornication is the “most likely cause” of unwanted pregnancies in Ireland.
Mayo TD Michelle Mulherin made the remarks during a debate on proposed abortion legislation in the Dáil.
“Abortion, as murder, therefore sin, which is the religious argument, is no more sinful, from a scriptural point of view, than all other sins we don’t legislate against, like greed, hate and fornication, the latter, being fornication, I would say, is probably the single most likely cause of unwanted pregnancies in this country,” she said.
The Middle Ages just called. They miss you.
Father Tony Flannery, a Catholic priest who has been outspoken in his criticism of the abuse crisis in Ireland, has found himself under investigation by the Vatican for his liberal views.
Founder of the Association of Irish Priests, Father Flannery told TheJournal.ie that the Vatican has contacted him to inform him of the investigation.
The effect of the investigation was immediate. This week The Irish Catholic newspaper reports that Father Flannery had to cease writing his monthly column in the Redemptorist Reality magazine in response to news of the investigation.
What a shame we can’t silence Tim Flannery!
The gardai have confirmed to former Fine Gael election candidate John Colgan that they have prepared and forwarded a file to the DPP after he made allegations that the address by Dr Boyce was in breach of the Prohibition of Incitement to Hatred Act, 1989.
The homily, entitled: “To Trust in God” was delivered to worshippers during a novena at the Marian shrine in Co Mayo last August and subsequently reported in the media, including The Irish Times, under the headline: “‘Godless culture’ attacking church, says bishop.”
Mr Colgan, a retired chartered engineer and economist from Leixlip, Co Kildare, referred in his formal complaint to two key passages in Dr Boyce’s homily which he believes broke the law.
One of the passages referred to the Catholic Church in Ireland being “attacked from outside by the arrows of a secular and godless culture”.
A second passage, which was included in the complaint, stated: “For the distinguishing mark of Christian believers is the fact they have a future; it is not that they know all the details that await them, but they know in general terms that their life will not end in emptiness.”
Oliver O’Grady (66) had thousands of explicit images of children stored on computers and USB drives, some depicting victims as young as two.
He was jailed yesterday for three years at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court.
The images were discovered after O’Grady left his laptop on an Aer Lingus flight. A staff member examined the computer and alerted gardai after coming across the files.
THE POPE has accepted the resignation of the Catholic Bishop of Derry, Séamus Hegarty, who is standing down for health reasons…
Dr Hegarty submitted his letter of resignation earlier this month. In a statement, he said he had received a diagnosis of a condition which was “unfortunately, irreversible and progressive”. It meant he was “no longer able to fulfil the role of diocesan bishop”…
In recent years, he has faced questions concerning his handling of clerical child sex abuse allegations, particularly in Raphoe. He said he would welcome a statutory inquiry into the handling of such allegations there.
A report on the handling of such abuse allegations by church authorities in Raphoe has been completed by the Catholic Church’s child protection watchdog, the National Board for Safeguarding Children…
The reports are expected to be published in coming weeks.
Let’s hope the emergence of truth and the pursuit of justice proves to be ‘irreversible and progressive’ too.
It is understood Fr Peter Muldowney, parish priest of Mooncoin, asked for a period of leave from his ministry with immediate effect so that “a safeguarding matter” concerning him could be addressed.
The Bishop of Ossory, Dr Seamus Freeman, acceded to the request.
A garda investigation has begun but it does not relate to Fr Muldowney’s period in the Diocese of Ossory.
At Mass in Kilkenny city on Saturday evening, Fr Martin Delaney told the congregation in St Canice’s Church that he had been asked to go to Mooncoin with immediate affect so that the claim of “abuse” against Fr Muldowney could be investigated.
Dr Daly, who was the Bishop of Derry for 19 years during the Northern Ireland Troubles, has become the first senior Irish Catholic cleric to call for an end to celibacy in the church.
His intervention in the debate over whether priests should be allowed to marry is highly significant because he is still one of the most respected figures in the Irish Catholic church at a time when faith in the institution has been shattered by paedophile scandals involving clergy.
Challenging centuries of Catholic theocracy, Dr Daly has said that allowing the clergy to marry would solve some of the church’s problems. The number of Catholic priests in Ireland is sharply declining as older clergy die and few young men commit to a celibate life. In some parishes the church has transferred priests from Poland and the developing world to fill the gap.
Rational and brave! I’m afraid there’s no future for you in the church, Bishop.
Sorry, just trying to recapture some of the old News of the World style there…
AN unresolved battle about gay clergy within the Church of Ireland is threatening to erupt after the News Letter’s revelation that a senior cleric entered a civil partnership.
The Very Rev Tom Gordon’s same-sex union, which was reported for the first time on Saturday, led to weekend meetings of “genuinely shocked” senior figures from the traditional wing of the church, while gay rights campaigners hailed the move as evidence of the growing acceptance of same-sex couples within the Church of Ireland.
Yesterday the Rev Gordon said that he had received approval from his bishop, the Rt Rev Michael Burrows, prior to entering the partnership in July with his boyfriend of 20 years.
Though the reality — with just ten comments in five days — appears to be that nobody who matters gives a flying fuck. Do read the comments though: some of them are scary.
The Irish justice minister has said that forthcoming child protection measures, including mandatory reporting will “apply regardless of any internal rules of any religious grouping”.
Alan Shatter was responding to comments made by Cardinal Sean Brady who defended the seal of confession.
Cardinal Brady stressed it was a “sacred and treasured” rite.
Mr Shatter said past failures in the Catholic Church had led paedophiles to believe they could act with “impunity”.
Last month the Cloyne report was published.
It found the diocese failed to report all complaints of abuse to police.
Bad news, Cardinal: you and your henchmen are no longer above the law.
County Donegal in Ireland is about to have its bucolic image shattered by a report into how paedophiles, both clergy and laity, abused children for decades.
An investigation into clerical sex abuse in the Catholic diocese of Raphoe in County Donegal is about to report its findings, which are expected to be damning. Meanwhile, new evidence has emerged from victims of a parallel paedophile ring operating in the same Gaelic-speaking corner of the Irish Republic.
A number of survivors of abuse have told the Guardian that lay members of the church as well as priests sexually exploited them for years in the county.
And as with the expected conclusion of the report into Raphoe, they say the national police service, the Garda, was complicit in a culture of cover-up that allowed the perpetrators to carry on abusing them.
Ireland is squeezing the Roman Catholic Church to hand over cash and real estate toward a 1.4 billion-euro ($2 billion) child-abuse bill amid the bitterest stand-off yet seen between the Vatican and the government….
[Irish PM] Kenny said the church needs to be “truly and deeply penitent for the horrors it perpetrated, hid and denied” after three government reports on clerical abuse and cover-ups rocked one of Europe’s most devout societies. With the focus now moving to who compensates the victims in talks starting next month, the church’s riches and dominance of Ireland’s educational system face their most direct threat in the country’s modern history.
More than $400m of compensation to American victims of sexual abuse by Catholic priests was paid with loans and guarantees from Allied Irish Bank, it has ben revealed.
The funds, in the form of loans, guarantees and lines of credit, were given specifically to pay clerical abuse victims, and led to AIB being dubbed the ‘Vatican’s banking arm’ in U.S. legal circles.
The revelation that a comparatively small Irish bank based on another continent was used to pay off victims will raise questions about AIB’s links to the church.
Let’s hope the shareholders are asking questions — and getting answers.
…or why Catholics can get away with murder.
The most startling new measure in a system of mandatory reporting is the obligation for priests to violate the sanctity of the “sacramental seal” of Confession when a paedophile reveals that he or she has been involved in such activities. Senator Nick Xenophon has proposed a similar measure for Australia.
The sacramental seal binds priests under pain of excommunication and serious sin never to reveal what has been communicated to them by the penitent in Confession, unless the penitent gives explicit permission.
I have no hesitation in stating that priests will guard the sanctity of the seal of Confession with their very lives. They would certainly undergo imprisonment rather than violate it. Even if a penitent confesses that he or she has been involved in a case of rape, murder or serious theft, the priest will do nothing to indicate to anyone that there was a crime confessed or who was the perpetrator.
OK, now explain why this is a good thing.
Or maybe by now it’s just force of habit.
The Irish Catholic Hierarchy of course tells the truth about many things (which is a pretty low hurdle for ethical behaviour), but it is unsafe to assume that telling the truth is their default position, without further corroboration, in cases where it is in their interests to mislead us. Even if they insist that they are not lying or misleading us, they might be lying or misleading us when they say that. Or they might be practicing ‘mental reservation’. Based on their record whenever they have been independently investigated about dealing with child sexual abuse, that is the most prudent default position to take.
Below are 35 relevant extracts from the Cloyne Report that support the need to be cautious about believing what members of the Irish Catholic Hierarchy say. For context, Bishop Magee was in charge of the Cloyne diocese. He resigned last year, and he went into hiding when the Cloyne Report was published. He is also the only man to have been private secretary to three different Popes at the Vatican. Magee had placed Monsignor O’Callaghan in charge of investigating sex abuse allegations in Cloyne. Ian Elliott is the Chief Executive of the Irish Catholic Church’s Child Protection Board.
Fr Federico Lombardi, the Vatican spokesman, denied that a letter sent by the former Papal Nuncio to Irish bishops encouraged them to cover up abuse allegations. The Cloyne report described the letter, which objected to a framework set out by the bishops for handling abuse cases, as “entirely unhelpful”.
However, Fr Lombardi insisted it was “understandable and legitimate” to raise objections, as the measures risked contravening canonical law. “There is no reason to interpret that letter as being intended to cover up cases of abuse,” he added.
Fr Lombardi added that harsh criticisms of the Vatican following the report were “curious”, claiming they “demonstrate little awareness of what the Holy See has actually done over the years to help effectively address the problem.”
However Maeve Lewis, director of abuse survivors’ group One in Four, hit out at Fr Lombardi’s claims. Saying they “completely lack substance”, she added his words are “part of the now familiar refusal by the Vatican to acknowledge that the culture of loyalty and secrecy which facilitated the sexual abuse of children extended far beyond the Irish Church.
“It is further evidence, if needed, that the Vatican’s claim to prioritise the safety of children is completely lacking in credibility,” she said.
And all that stuff about the loving Sky Daddy is a bit suss, too.
Seriously. When an organisation’s whole existence is based on spreading a fantasy, why should anyone expect them to tell the truth?
Irish Catholic priests have said that they will not reveal secrets given in confession even though new legislation by the Irish government will call for it.
The new legislation will be introduced after another child abuse scandal in Cloyne, a Cork diocese came to light. As late as 2008, clerics accused of child abuse were being protected by the diocese the Murphy Inquiry found.
The Irish government has now stated that a zero tolerance law will come into effect. However, the group that represents Ireland’s Catholic priests says the secrecy of the confession box must be retained.
Having inflicted confinement and misery on thousands of Irish people, perhaps it’s time for the priests to have it inflicted on them for a change.
…because the Vatican lets them.
Retired Bishop John Magee has been singled out for failing to follow Church rules on reporting clerical sex abuse in an Irish diocese as recently as three years ago.
A fourth damning inquiry into the church lays the blame for the mishandling of allegations with the former Vatican aide who served as personal secretary to three popes….
The long-awaited report also found his second-in-command Monsignor Denis O’Callaghan did not approve of the Church’s protection guidelines, in particular the need to alert the police, and “stymied” child abuse policy….
The commission’s devastating criticisms go right to the top of the Catholic Church.
It lambasted the Vatican and accused it of an “entirely unhelpful” reaction for referring to the Irish Church’s mandatory reporting guidelines as merely a study document.
It found the response from Rome effectively gave a carte blanche to the likes of Bishop Magee to ignore the guidelines and offered “comfort and support” to senior clerics such as Monsignor O’Callaghan who dissented from official Irish Church policy on paedophile priests.
Looks like the distraction didn’t work.
Lopez’s digital version of the Virgin of Guadalupe will go on public display in UCC today as part of her Our Lady and Other Queer Santas exhibition which runs alongside the conference, organised by UCC’s Centre for Mexican Studies.
In a statement issued yesterday, Bishop of Cork and Ross, Most Reverend Dr John Buckley, said: “It is regrettable and unacceptable that this exhibition seeks to portray the Mother of God in such an offensive way.”
Fine Gael Cork South Central TD Jerry Buttimer also issued a statement saying it is not acceptable for any person or artist to denigrate another’s beliefs or to use art as a catch-all excuse for bigotry, prejudice or blasphemy.
If you don’t want other people to ridicule your beliefs, then don’t have ridiculous beliefs.
Aoife Kavanagh presents an investigation into evidence of sexual abuse by Irish missionaries in Africa, and asks how priests and fellow Christians have escaped punishment to date.
The really sad thing is that most of this could have been avoided if the Church had only recognised its employees as human beings, not bodiless souls. So many people, all of them thinking: “I’m the only sinner.”
For years it was Ireland’s hidden scandal: an estimated 30,000 women were sent to church-run laundries, where they were abused and worked for years with no pay.
Their offence, in the eyes of society, was to break the strict sexual rules of Catholic Ireland, having children outside wedlock.
Although it has been more than a decade since their story came to light, the women are still waiting for an apology.
Now an advocacy group, Justice for Magdalenes, which has spent the past two years lobbying the Irish government to investigate the laundries, is taking the case to the United Nations, alleging the abuse amounted to human rights violations and hoping that an official rebuke will shame the government into action.
Because apparently nothing can shame the Catholic Church.
Former priest Bill Carney was named as one of the worst cases in Dublin’s Catholic diocese in the Murphy report into clerical abuse there. However, for the last 10 years he has been free to live quietly in Britain.
In its 40 pages on Carney, the Murphy report said that his was one of the worst cases the commission investigated and that the Church’s handling of his case was “nothing short of catastrophic”.
“It was inept, self-serving and for the best part of 10 years displayed no obvious concern for the welfare of children,” the report said.
In 1992, the Church convicted Carney internally, under Canon law, of child sexual abuse.
But this compulsive paedophile refused to leave the parish house. So the Church paid him £30,000 to go away.
“And what I was thinking this morning was that it’s an awful day for relatives – we don’t want it to happen, none of us want it to happen – but God willing, for those who are gone, God willing, it is a wonderful day for them”
Fr Mick Murphy, who anointed the victims of the Cork Airport crash.
Go on, tell us again that it’s not a death cult.