Monday, 28 May 2012


A member of the leadership team of the Association of Catholic Priests (Ireland), Father Brendan Hoban, has said that his organisation of 900 + Irish priests are not “dissidents”.
In the dictionary the word “dissident” is defined as: rebellious, dissenting, unorthodox, non-conforming.
I was present at the ACP gathering in Dublin on May 7th 2012 and many voices from the floor called for the ordination of women, the abolition of compulsory celibacy for priests and the full inclusion of gay and lesbian people in every aspect of Catholic Church life – including I imagine the ordination of gay men and lesbian women.
The Vatican and Roman Curia has ruled - out for all time – the ordination of women. They have declared that they have no intention of making celibacy optional for Catholic priests. They call gay and lesbian people GRAVELY DISORDERED and have no intention of ordaining them or blessing their unions.
The Pope, Curia and the world’s bishops say that they are the magisterium – the teaching authority of the Church. The Pope claims to be infallible on matters of faith and morals. He believes that what he says is what Jesus says!
In calling for the ordination of women, optional celibacy for priests and the full inclusion of gay and lesbian people in all aspects of Church life the ACT, Father Brendan Hoban, Father Sean McDonagh, Father PJ Madden, Father Kevin Hegarty, Father Gerry O’Connor, Father Tony Flannery, Father Adrian Egan and Brian Darcy are dissenting from the official teaching of the Roman Catholic Church and therefore they are DISSIDENTS!  In fact Rome would regard them as spreading heresy and promoting schism. If Rome wants to take it far enough it could suspend them from the priesthood.
The ACP is going to have to: “pee or get off the pot”.
 Verbal liberals, who just talk and never act, are more dangerous within the Church that right wing fundamentalists. At least you know exactly where you stand with right wing individuals like Father Vincent Twomey and scary organisations like Opus Dei and The Society of St Pius X.
Is the ACP just going to be another Catholic clerical talking shop or is it going to challenge what needs to be challenged? Time will tell. Current squeaky noises from the ACP are worrying.

Bishop Pat Buckley

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