Sunday, 1 March 2015

SEX AND BELFAST SEMINARY - "THE WING"

Saint Malachy's Belfast.

Over the past 4 days there have been "tit for tat" comments on the Blog between two contributors regarding sex and The Belfast Catholic - The Wing at St Malachy's College.

The story originated over Father James Donaghy - the former parish priest of Bangor - being able to goo freely into The Wing, lock himself into a seminarians' room and sexually abuse him. He had been sexually abusing this young man at parochial houses since he was a child of 13.


Abused since 13 in priest's houses


Questions are not being asked about why the college president - Bishop Donal "Dickie" McKeown - the current Bishop of Derry - did not make himself aware of this abuse and stop Father Donaghy going to the seminary.


Dickie

Questions are also being asked about the then seminary rector - Father John "Phylis" McManus - who was aware of Father Donaghy's visits, As it turns out Phylis herself has now gone missing amid rumours of homosexual activity.


Phylis


And finally questions are being asked about the then seminary spiritual director - Father Paul "Flossie" Symonds  - who is currently undergoing a church trial in Dublin for inappropriate behaviour / abuse of young men. 


Flossie
One contributor to the Blog suggested that the other seminarians present in the seminary at the time were "moral cowards" for not complaining about what they saw going on to the church authorities.

Other contributors have said that these seminarians were "powerless" - would not have been listened to had they complained and would in fact have been expelled from the seminary for complaining about priests. 

Those comments are included here below to allow for further clarification and debate. 

·  Anonymous 26 February 2015 at 14:09

You spoke to ex-seminarians who 'felt powerless to act'. Of course they weren't powerless to act! We have not received from Christ 'a spirit of timidity'.

If your claim about 'The Wing' is true, then these men were moral cowards who CHOSE to do nothing.

And wasn't the seminarian (s) you state was abused an adult as well? Couldn't he or they simply have said 'no'?
Ha, ha, One can just imagine the prim and priggish little fairy who wrote the above! "I say, Donaghy, you cad! You've got my gander up! Desist you bounder!"


Donaghy


Rapists don't ask permission of their victims. Neither do they take "no" for an answer.

These ex seminarians were there training for the priesthood and the seminary authorities had TOTAL CONTROL over them 24 hours a day.

Had they accused a priest of anything they would have been immediately expelled.

The "victim" you spoke of was abused by Father Donaghy from the age of 13. Donaghy had totally groomed him and had him under his control. The abuse in the seminary was when the 13 year old was 18.

Within months of this he did get the courage to speak out.

You obviously have no idea of the power abusers have over their victims.

I didn't know that seminarian had been abused by the priest in question since the age of thirteen; I apologise for my poorly informed comment on the matter. However, I disagree strongly with you that those others were powerless to act: they could and should have blown the whistle on that priest - even at the risk of being expelled. Those seminary authorities did not have total control over their students. The students in question clearly valued their futures more than the welfare of another human being. As I said, they were moral cowards.

Thank you for your clarification.

I still think you are a little harsh expecting 18 year olds to stand up against the might of the church.

Maybe moral immaturity rather than moral cowardice?

Pat





Pat, if just one of those seminarians had had the moral gumption to stand up to what you called ' the might of the Church', he would have had the might of Christ behind him - not to mention his eternal gratitude.

When I was at Maynooth, I reported a fellow seminarian for his sexual fantasies about young boys. He hadn't committed any crime, so I couldn't substantiate my report about him. I did not find this an easy thing to do, but I did it all the same. And I wasn't much older than those seminarians in ' The Wing'.

The more you say the more I appreciate your point of view.

I would love you to meet one of the ex seminarians who I have listened to.

Congratulations to you for your courage.

Did you suffer as a result of your courage?

I was sick with fear and uncertainty, made worse by the fact that I was on my own. However, I was believed, and the person I'd reported was monitored.

Nothing more could be done with him: remember he had merely expressed his fantasies to me on a number of occasions; he hadn't acted on them.

Thank you for offering me the opportunity to meet one of those ex-seminarians, but in truth I'd rather not accept your offer: that whole affair at Maynooth nauseated me, and just recalling it today still makes me feel physically sick.

I can understand how you feel.

A number of the ex seminarians I have spoken to are still suffering emotionally and psychologically from what they endured in the Belfast seminary - after 15 years!

He was "monitored"? Not expelled? If you were believed. why didn't they expel him? I hope they didn't ORDAIN him??? To have such fantasies and express them to someone, in my view, would debar him from priesthood.




In the Wing, at the time you peak of, when Dirty Donaghy was on the prowl, there was truly nothing we could have done. He was so obviously 'well in' with Bishop Walsh and Fr McManus. You would have been out on your ear.

The place was screwed up. I eventually left. As far as I now know, Fr Paddy McCafferty did his best to alert authorities to the danger, based on his own past experiences and his fears for the young guy in question. But to no avail. It seems he too was ignored.

The judge, when passing sentence on Dirty Donaghy, described him as a "ruthless sexual predator". I don't think it is very fair of you to describe us, back then, as "moral cowards". It never dawned on us that there was the slightest thing we could do to change things.

Disorder was deeply ingrained into the system of St Malachy's Seminary under "Phyliss" McManus, Paul Symonds and co. I hope the place has changed for the better!

I'm sorry to hear that about those ex-seminarians.

I have found the Novena of Surrender to be especially helpful in times of trouble; it's on the internet. Just type 'Novena of Surrender' and then click on 'Novena of Surrender to the will of God. Catholic Doors Ministry.

Edmund Burke may have said those words about evil triumphing when 'good men do nothing'. Unfortunately, what he didn't say is that there is always a price to pay when good people act in the face of evil. And the greater the evil, the greater the price to pay.

All the best.

To Anonymous who replied to my comment on 28 February at 13.08.

A person cannot be expelled without proof. I could not offer proof, only allegation. Would you be happy to be condemned on the unsubstantiated word of another person?


You are mistaken: Fr James Donaghy was not around when I was in 'The Wing'.

I stand by my claim, that you and your fellow seminarians were 'moral cowards'; in fact, you all disgust me.

Oh well, there ya go!

I never said you were in the Wing when Dirty Donaghy was on the go. You are quite happy to condemn us though - even though you weren't in that system as it existed at that time.

We "disgust" you, do we? The feeling is mutual, you self-righteous prat! Your post though is very suspect.

You weren't accusing your fellow seminarian of skipping over the wall in Maynooth to sneak down to the Roost now were you??? You were accusing him of what P, Benedict called 'the most egregious crime'!!! And they "monitored" him - whatever that means!

You are a smug git - whoever you are - high up there above us all, looking down from the lofty heights of your "moral high ground".

You betray yourself in your initial comments - jumping to conclusions about the victims of a man who was a brutal rapist! "Just say no?? It wasn't bloody Grange Hill.

I repeat - you were up against the power of a sick system. Dicky McKeown has his head up his backside. John Murray inhabited another planet. Phylis McManus was salivating over the boys he fancied and trying to get into their trunks. Paul Symonds was ejaculating over lads' feet! Dirty Donaghy was Walsh's right hand man.

If you think you could have done better brave Anonymous Crusader - good luck to ya! See ya! Wouldn't wanna be ya!

For all your talk on here - for all we know - the guy you reported is 'out there' - untreated - and a danger to young boys! So much for your "reporting to the authorities". Disgusted, are ya? Yeah right. Ditto!


To Anonymous who posted on 1 March at 10.21

If you re-visit my post of 28 February at 23.19, you'll see that there is a gap in it; that gap contained a statement along the following lines: I've made checks on the person I reported, and as far as I know, he was not ordained. So please God my reporting of him bore fruit after all.

I don't know why this part of my post didn't appear, but it was sent.

All my postings are genuine, and apart from the one error I made (and for which I apologised), truthful.

I'm sorry for upsetting you. I shouldn't have said 'you all disgust me'; that was uncharitable and unchristian. I ask for your forgiveness.




46 comments:

  1. As a priest of Down and Connor I am deeply ashamed of these happenings. James Donaghy is in prison receiving his due punishment.

    But what of those who have seriously SINNED BY OMISSION?

    "Have you no fear of God at all" ?



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    Replies
    1. Father,

      Thank you for your comment.

      Do you not realise by now that there are bishops and priests in the Catholic Church who not only have no fear of God - they do not believe in God at all!

      Their actions and inactions - on a daily basis - show lack of faith and soul.

      Delete
    2. Why was some action not taken against Donal McKeown, John McManus and Paul Symonds - and indeed against Bishop Walsh over this awful episode? As a mother of two teenage boys my heart goes out to Mr Donaghy's victims. I would not let any child of mine near anyone in a collar.

      Former Saint Patricks parishioner.

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    3. You should not tar all priests with the one brush. I have been hurt by a priest in my past but I have also been helped by another priest. One or two bad apples do not make a rotten barrel.

      Delete
    4. This is very true.

      However if the good apples in a barrel do nothing about the bad apples then eventually the rot spreads!

      Good apples have the obligation to get rid of the bad apples - and not just turn a blind eye.

      Delete
    5. Thank God I am a good Prod.

      Delete
    6. Plenty of "Prods" as you call them, abuse children too. We are still awaiting the Kincora enquiry. Bigotry is not an answer to anything.

      Delete
    7. ......and the investigation of the sexual abuse (and maybe murder) of boys by good prods in the House of Commons and the House of Lords....

      Delete
  2. Oh, you better believe it! Plenty of "good Prods" abuse boys and girls. Look at Paisley's mate, Bible-Thumper and catholic-hater "Pastor" Willie Mullan (it was in the Sunday Life about him). He shot himself. And Free Presbyterian elder William McGrath who oversaw the horrors of Kincora and went to his grave with his bitter wee lips tightly sealed! There was no prising open his "loyal" clenched jaw! http://www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/sunday-life/news/paisleys-dead-pastor-friend-linked-to-kincora-abuse-30446746.html

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  3. Too many "good prods", too many "good catholics and too few real Christians.

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  4. Some 4% of priests are paedophiles. Most paedophiles are family members and known friends.

    Belfast Medic.

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  5. As a priest of this diocese, I am deeply ashamed of the way in which we have betrayed these young men who came to us in good faith, believing they had a vocation to serve God as priests.

    I am disgusted at the calibre of men we put in charge of St Joseph's Wing/St Malachy's Seminary - putting "wolves" in charge of the "sheepfold" as it were. I am appalled.

    I am ashamed of myself too because I listened to, for example, John McManus', vilification and ridicule of Fr Paddy McCafferty for speaking out over the years - hearing him described as a "trouble-maker", "disloyal", a "disgrace" and worse, by McManus and a few others I could mention but I will spare their blushes.

    I listened and never raised my voice in support of him in public or in private. I feel that he is owed a personal and public apology, by the diocese. I take my hat off to him for "sticking with the Church". There were plenty of his so-called "brother priests", who would happily have watched him sink! If ever anyone has been vindicated, it is this good priest.

    Shame on all of us. I don't know how we put this right. I seriously hesitate to encourage any young man to enter the seminary in this diocese for how do we know they will be safe? What are the qualifications of the men currently charged with formation? How fit are they spiritually, psychologically, even "sexually", to be entrusted with a crucial work? Have we learned from the past of allowing the likes of "Flossie" and "Phylis" to "form" our students?

    I am horrified and sickened at what was going on right under our noses and we didn't want to know. Kyrie eleison! Priest, D&C.

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    Replies
    1. Dear Father,

      This is probably the most honest and compassionate thing I have heard from a D&C priest ever.

      Thank you for acknowledging the suffering of these young men. There are nearly a dozen of them.

      But no one wants to listen to them and I can assure you their residue of pain is deep even after 10 or more years.

      Some have even lost belief in God.

      They went into The Wing full of idealism and and a desire to serve.

      Their plight calls out to Heaven.

      Pat

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    2. Bishop Paddy Walsh presided over all this evil. He appointed Donaghy to positions having been informed of his habits.

      He appointed Phylis and Flossie to The Wing.

      When 2 seminarians complained to Pat Buckley, Walsh sent McManus to intimidate them!

      He knew that Donaghy had a teenage boy (later a seminarian) living with him in Whitehouse and Bangor.

      But he did nothing!! I wonder why? There may be a very uncomfortable answer to that question.

      Noel Treanor has the duty to apply restorative justice in various ways.

      I will not be holding my breath !!!!

      Priest.

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    3. I can confirm what the priest above says.

      Paddy Walsh despatched John McManus to England to speak to two seminarians that had been abused by James Donaghy.

      One was in a new seminary and was extremely vulnerable to the Walsh / McManus attack.

      On return McManus wrote letters to Walsh - copies of which I have - denying what Donaghy was at.

      It was all moral and psychological terrorism!

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  6. When one considers all of this - along with the nefarious antics of Judge Gemma Loughran during the attempts to bring Jim Donaghy to account and justice - one cannot but conclude that something very rotten is (or was) at the heart of the diocese.
    Priest.

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  7. And Bishop Treanor went on to appoint Phyliss as Chancellor of the diocese!!! Egg on the face or what??? Who was advising him?

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  8. The "principality of D & C" seems to be a weird and offbeat place based on the words that have flown over and back accross theese blogs. The Irish College as also featured in the discussions. What about the other dioceses and colleges how have they measured up over the years?

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  9. There were problems in Maynooth with the president Monsignor Ledwith seducing seminarians and its famous seminarian cruising area: The Pink Corridor.

    Clonliffe College Dublin, now closed, had a strong gay subculture.

    St Peters in Wexford was a full blown gay mecca.

    Seminaries in England, Rome and USA have all had problems.

    Maybe priestly training should non institution based?

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    Replies
    1. What a good idea. Scrapping celibacy would also help as would a positive portrayal of human sexuality in all its diversity. The old unwritten law that sex = sin needs to be publically demolished

      Delete
  10. There were problems in Maynooth with the president Monsignor Ledwith seducing seminarians and its famous seminarian cruising area: The Pink Corridor.

    Clonliffe College Dublin, now closed, had a strong gay subculture.

    St Peters in Wexford was a full blown gay mecca.

    Seminaries in England, Rome and USA have all had problems.

    Maybe priestly training should non institution based?

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  11. McManus wrecked people and Parishes
    He spent 1 year in Sacred Heart after he left .'The Wing' and people could not stand him! He the went to Whitehouse and there he did nothing but upset people, argue, and stop all the good work done by the previous PP before him!
    By the time McManus was finish in Whitehouse the congregational attendance had fallen by half, the organist left and the choir stopped, the folk group were disbanded due to what I am lead to believe was a personal vendetta McManus had against the young man leading it, the childrens liturgy stopped, and many hurt and upset people left to seek out another Parish.

    He is a disfunctional man and for all that to happen and Noel Treanor to give him one of the highest standing positions in the Diocese? Says it all really!

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  12. I heard Fr McCafferty described as a "effing nuisance", a "disaster" and "a nutcase obsessed with abuse", by senior men in Down and Connor. However, "This poor man called and the Lord heard him and rescued him". Fr Paddy lifted up his voice. Thank God that he did. Priest.

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  13. Amen. He has suffered so greatly. I hope he can achieve healing.

    Pat

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  14. Believe me, I'm no apologist for abusers or their clerical managers.
    I've just been trying to think of possible explantions for the failures by bishop Walsh and others mentioned to take proper preventive action concerning sexual improprieties at St Malachy's Wing.
    At worst end of the scale of blame, were conscious choices made to ignore evidence, thereby further victimising complainants? And if that was the case very serious questions inevitably arise: were 'superiors' too involved in improprieties?

    Working from the other end of the scale of blame, how feasible is it that in those less enlightened days, clerical superiors had so little knowledge, experience or understanding of homosexual sexual improprieties and its damaging effects, that this (at a time long before current public awareness of the issues) combined with naivety and incredulity as to the events alleged, when combined with an instinctive reluctance to think the worst of clerical colleagues, and a gullibility in accepting their 'explanations', led to disbelief of the complaints being made. I ask this bearing in mind that as said elsewhere in Pat's blogs, some clergy are simply not very bright, and we should not equate clerical ranking/superiority with either superior intelligence, intellectual rigour, or indeed the moral courage and strength of character required to take decisive action.

    Elsewhere, posts refer to McManus having now 'gone absent amid suspicions of homosexual activity, and previously he was 'salivating at trying to get into boys trunks.' So was McManus just as manipulative an abuser as Donaghy? And if so, is it right to blame bishop Walsh, particularly as you say Pat that you've got copies of letters from McManus to Walsh denying Donaghy's impropriety. I'm wondering what reports written or verbal , were made at the relevant times, by whom, and to whom?
    Having asked these questions, I'm conscious another contributor says that Walsh knew Donaghy had a teenage boy living with him in Whitehouse and Bangor, so it's also reasonable to ask to what extent bishop Walsh questioned Donaghy concerning this.
    I've more questions than answers, but those of you with personal experience of the events might help shine more factual light into the public domain. Please do.

    Finally I wonder what parallels might exist here with current criticisms of police and social services managers in Rotherham and Oxford concerning grooming and sexual abuse of young girls there.
    What forces, personal, practical social and political, militate against those in authority taking strong preventive action?
    MourneManMichael

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  15. This is a very well thought out attempt to understand the dynamics of the whole situation.

    As the representative of the family of one of the seminarians -and eventually the seminarian himself - it took me 10 years to make Bishop Walsh act and even then the action was pitiful.

    The two overiding priorities of Bishop Walsh and the clergy were the "good name" of the church and the protection, at any cost of fellow clerics.

    The only "bombs" that cracked open this clerical bunker were publicity and eventually prosecution.

    My own view is that everything and everyone could be sacrificed on the altar of protecting the clerical club. What value have 12 seminarians compared to the invaluable jewels that are "the church" and the "priestly caste".

    It was a case of: "It is necessary that 12 men should die to save the " Bride of Christ".

    To me this kind of thinking is as far away from the teachings of Christ as the earth is from the edge of the universe.

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    Replies
    1. Another question/thought. Has any civil action for damages been taken against Donaghy, and/or D&C diocese?
      Bearing in mind the diocese's duty of care; that abuse by at least one priest (officer, or at least a representative of the diocesan organisation) is now proven in law; that concerns at his behaviour had been raised with his diocesan manager the bishop much earlier; the many precedents now established by substantial awards for damages, it would seem that civil action for damages could well be productive in addition to providing the oxygen of publicity to further highlight evils done.
      MMM

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  16. Pat: Thank you for that illuminating and succinct reply.
    I see no reason whatsoever to disbelieve your comments, clearly arising from experience, nor do I think your perceptions are negatively biased as you are outside what you call the 'clerical club'.

    My humanism comes from beliefs outside the personal failures of clergy in the tribal church I was reared in. But were I still in that process of seeking truth justice and meaning in the RC religion, scandalous personal behaviour and cover ups by its clergy such as have now been made public, would certainly raise serious doubts in my mind as to the basis and validity of any part of their professed religious beliefs.
    MourneManMichael

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    Replies
    1. Thanks MMM.

      I totally respect your humanist perspective.

      From my perspective they have abandoned their "faith" in God for the worship of a Golden Calf of their own making - their "church".

      From any perspective the fruits of this behaviour have to be ridicule and total loss of credibility.

      Their idolatry will be their undoing - an undoing that, thankfully, is well under way.

      Delete
  17. I would like to thank my fellow D&C Priest who contributed to the blog at 10.44 on March 2nd. I agree with everything he said.
    In my own experience as a Priest in this diocese I have come to the conclusion that any cleric who raises an uncomfortable truth or issue for the Bishop, will through time discover that they are viewed as "the problem". I have witnessed numerous examples of this over decades.
    I and many other clergy in this diocese hoped and prayed that Bishop Walsh's successor would have brought a different outlook, and practice to the role of Diocesan Bishop. Very sadly Bishop Treanor has been a huge disappointment in this regard. He has many of the worst traits of Bishop Walsh, and a few of his own as well,
    including year by year leading less & less Confirmation ceremonies; the 84 yr old Bishop Walsh often filling in for him.
    We now face the prospect of 12/13 more yrs of Noel's detached ministry. I doubt there will be much to salvage in our Diocese when he finally hangs up his crozier !

    Priest of Down & Connor.

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  18. What a sad state of affairs. There is politics plans, counter plans and strategies. Is there any care of souls does the name of Jesus or christian faith get a look in edgeways? What of the other denominations? How are they measuring up in terms of care of souls vs the woes of the organisation?

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  19. A couple of points: I think Pat may sadly be right and that a number of our colleagues have no Faith or belief in God at all and are mere functionaries cynically filling a "role". That makes me shudder.

    You see nailed up on trees and telegraph poles in this part of the world a question they might ponder - "Where will you spend Eternity?"

    No doubt - if "Phylis" had not been stopped in her trot, she was heading for a severe case of "inflammation of the button holes" - maybe even auxiliary bishop. That too makes me shudder.

    I think whoever "got" this diocese was receiving a "poisoned chalice" - poisoned by the likes of "Phylis" and other cronies, the "in crowd" as they were, under PW.

    Donaghy, we all remember was "Jubilee Jim" and does anyone else recall that nauseating production in the Waterfront Hall back then which was, essentially, a hymn of praise in honour of "This Great Diocese Of Down And Connor"?? I sat through it. I hope it has shortened my purgatory.

    Bishop Treanor has been handed this "poisoned chalice". I personally find him to be a gentleman - a good man and I will happily work with him in serving God's People here who deserve best service.

    Finally, I believe we must all have a bit more confidence in God. This is not a "game". This is the life upon which the Lord will judge us, when we stand in front of Him, after drawing our last breaths.

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  20. Dear Father,

    Thank you for that honest and plain speaking comment.

    I do agree with you that Phylis was "on the way up" - and what's more she knew it - which gave her a feeling of invincibility. Had PW continued to reign she may well have had a mitre by now.

    PW seemed either powerless against James Donaghy. Donaghy has always claimed that he had "something" on PW. PW denied this to me at a face to face meeting in Lisbreen. But when he denied it he was looking at the floor.

    I do agree that Noel Treanor inherited a poisoned chalice.

    Maybe his "perceived" remoteness and coldness is a defence mechanism? But this approach will not work. It is causing more problems.

    Only a courageous and grace-filled intimate involvement with both priests and people is the answer to all these ills.

    Maybe he is overwhelmed by the size of the problem?

    But very soon something is going to give - and what an explosion / implosion that will be.

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  21. I came to Thinking Catholicism only last week. I've found this blog exciting (it has a gutter-press appeal), informative (when it isn't being hysterical), and occasionally humourous (when it isn't being malicious or vindictive). But I've found, too, disappointment at the personal abuse from some of its contributors, including you Pat.

    Take the post above from a priest on 5 March at 10.45. After suggesting (no doubt fraternally) that some of his colleagues might, in light of their conduct, ponder just where they are going to spend Eternity, slips into some questionable conduct of his own by referring to a fellow priest as 'Phylis' and thereafter as 'she' and 'her'. Hardly respectful. And hardly the impulse of the Spirit. But the irony seems lost on that priest.

    As for you Pat, was it really necessary, in a previous post, to refer to a fellow- priest's 'big willy' just because you disagreed with his stance on abortion (which, incidentally, he's entitled to)? You and I know that's what's called an 'ad hominem' argument (one that attacks a person rather than their point of view); it isn't really an argument at all, but a form of gratuitous personal abuse and a clear sign that the author has lost the debate. Yes, it was amusing, in a sniggering sort of way. But respectful? An impulse of the Spirit?

    If our profession of faith in Christ makes no difference to our conduct towards one another (especially to those with whom we strongly disagree), then what's the point of it? Sure don't the pagans do as much?

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    Replies
    1. Have to say I agree wholeheartedly with this sentiment that it does little credit to any contributors here, including you Pat, if we sink to the level of personalised abuse, no matter how humourously or superficially indirectly it's put.
      I did raise it as an issue some time back. While I simply ignore the childish ignorant and idiotic comments of what in my own mind I think of as alcoholic invective from those few midnight contributors who criticise you personally Pat, I wouldn't want the value of many thoughtful and thought provoking comments minimised by less considered and considerate ones
      MMM

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    2. I think, Fr, you need to lighten up a wee bit maybe. "Phylis" was how J McM was referred to by the clerical students in The Wing. Our Lord, after all, called Herod "that fox" because he had fox-like qualities. McManus was called Phylis, if I remember correctly, after the fashion of a Hairdressers (Phyliss's) on the Crumlin Road. Because John McManus' hair always had a blue-rinse, bouffant, just out of the Hairdressers style to it! And, by the way, Where will you spend Eternity, Fr?

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    3. Where will I spend Eternity? With you and Jesus, I expect. We can have a good laugh together - for Eternity!��

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    4. Hopefully at St Brigid's Lake of Beer :-)

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    5. I'll drink to that!

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  22. Dear Friend,

    Thank you for your comment and your constructive criticism.

    Maybe some aspects of my style of writing has been influenced by the 15 years I spent writing columns for the "Red Top" newspapers?

    But I also have a sense of humour - which can be dark and mischievous - that is not appreciated by everyone.

    But then again I have seen of so much in institutionalised Roman Catholicism that would make you weep if you did not laugh.

    I can assure you that I have suffered - and continue to suffer - so much abuse at the hands of some clergy that any "abuse" I offer in return. Maybe I am not the Christian I should be? But if I was "meek and mild" they would have buried me years ago.

    When you are going to build a new house the first stage is always DEMOLITION. Demolition is often a crude and dusty business. I am probably part of the demolition team?

    I do know that my heart is in the right place and everyday I try to serve God and others (especially the alienated) as best I can.

    Maybe what I like in "style" I make up for in substance? Either way Jesus is the bridge between the ideal and what we are as sinners. I know that this bridge is MY only hope.

    Pat

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  23. Pat, I was moved by your honest and humble response to my post.

    Don't misunderstand: I wasn't judging and condemning you or anyone else; whatever
    you all have done, I have done the same or the like.

    It's just that I don' want you to change for the worse. As a young priest, you inspired me. You were the kind of priest I wanted to be: compassionate, merciful, just, courageous, intelligent, innovative and, above all, steadfast in your service of Christ and his people. No matter what your enemies hurled at you, your resolve remained. You were an incredible example of a priest whose priesthood pointed squarely to the
    continuing priesthood of Christ in the Church. Such a contrast to the priesthood of so many others, which pointed to themselves rather than Christ. Those men should not
    have been ordained.

    I know you have suffered such abuse at the hands of fellow priests, and it makes me
    angry when I think of it.

    Please continue to serve Christ with the same loyalty to his Spirit that you once so
    clearly showed, that empowered you, and yes, that brought you such terrible crosses for loyal service. This is the biblical meaning of 'cross', but then, you know this much
    better than I.

    Your blog has enormous potential to shine light into some very dark places both in
    the Church and the wider world. Don't diminish that potential by eclipsing your light with personal abuse.

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    Replies
    1. My Friend,

      Thank you. I will do my best to follow your advice.

      Pat

      Delete
  24. The fact still remains that there is a serious problem running through D&C
    There are a group of priests who seem to think it is ok to bad mouth other priests, hurt and upset the good Parishoners, and destroy a whole parish - and yet, nothing is done, in fact quite the opposite, it seems to be that once they have successful wrecked the place and hurt everyone in the process, they get a big promotion!

    Where is McManus now?

    What do other priests, who contribute to this blog feel about his behaviour within Sacred Heart & Whitehouse Parishes ? I would be interested to hear their opinions!

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  25. as a guy at a jesuit school for 8 yrs in the 1970's
    unfortunately i know what happened

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  26. as a young guy at at jesuit school in 1970's i believe what went on above.......... i was there

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  27. Let's not forget the HIGH SOCIETY Bishop in Dallas, Texas. Bishop Farrell arrived in Dallas from New Jersey several years ago and the very thing he did was purchase a pricey home in the rich section of Dallas. He said he needed it to entertain his rich guests in Dallas in order to solicit donations for the church.
    Well, the diocese has a huge social hall connected to the Cathedral in downtown Dallas that would have suit this purpose splendidly bur the Bishop didn't want that.
    He probably would have garnered even larger donations BECAUSE people would have been impressed with his humble attitude, But this Bishop is very much into himself and he doesn't think like this.
    He's also the Bishop who has refused for years and years to feed homeless people on Christmas Eve by helping to fund the Catholic charity of 17 years that feeds them a huge buffet meal every Christmas Eve,
    Doesn't it say in the Bible that you're supposed to feed the hungry and shelter the needy? I guess this Bishop of Dallas took the day off from the seminary when they covered this dictate of Christian charity, I don't buy his selfish attitude.
    Don't EVER try to get an appointment with this Bishop as he remains totally inaccessible to the common folk. And, after sending him at least 40 emails over the years I have NEVER gotten one email in response. That alone tells me volumes about the character of this Bishop. Smokescreen 101

    ReplyDelete