Tuesday, 13 March 2018

THREAT TO PRIEST AND ANTI CLERICALISM

HILLTOWN PAROCHIAL HOUSE

WHILE ALL RIGHT THINKING PEOPLE SHOULD ABSOLUTELY CONDEMN THE RECENT THREATS AGAINST HILLTOWN PARISH PRIEST - FATHER CHARLES BYRNE - WE CAN ASK OURSELVES IF THESE THREATS INDICATE A RISE IN ANTI-CLERICALISM ON THE ISLAND OF IRELAND.



Many priests nowadays do not wear their clerical collar in public because of the verbal abuse they get when wearing it.


I personally always wear my collar and I have been verbally abused because of it - not in Northern Ireland I must admit - but on the streets of Dublin.

The history of various countries does show us that in those countries where clerics were once powerful and influential they are now greatly disliked. 


Historic anti-clericalism was a reaction to the Catholic Church's interference and domination of national politics.

And here in Ireland since the 1970's we have seen a similar push by people who want Ireland to be a secular and pluralist modern democracy.

But there is now another wave of anti-clericalism that stems from the constant revelations of sexual abuse by priests and the covering up of that abuse by bishops and other Church authorities.

This very emotional form of anti-clericalism is now present in Northern Ireland following the exposure of the 40-year reign of terror that Father Malachy Finnegan imposed on the students of St. Colman's College in Newry and upon child parishioners in Hilltown.



People are very angry that he was able to get away with all this physical and sexual abuse for so long and that while he lived he was treated like a "holy man" and when he died he was given the full houours of a clerical funeral - including a large headstone. 

Former Irish president - Mary McAleese - gave voice to that emotion in recent days when she called for an inquiry into the Father Finnegan reign. Her own youngest brother was abused by Finnegan.


MARY MC ALEESE


Every single Catholic priest - like every citizen - has the right to go about his everyday life without being threatened or abused in any way. And when we are we are quite within our right to make complaints to the police and have those who abuse and threaten us dealt with.

But in honesty and sorrow, we must also realise that our black suits and collars remind people of those priests who did abuse and those bishops who did - and do - cover up.

I think that the Irish Catholic Church must get itself ready for a long period of strong anti-clericalism and instead of feeling sorry for itself it needs to openly confront and confess all its wrongs and work for change.

The Irish author and political observer Tim Pat Coogan once wrote that Ireland was colonised twice - one by the British State and once by the Roman Catholic Church.


TIM PAT COOGAN


The 1916 Rising began the process of getting rid of "The Brits".

The anti-clericalism that is already here - and growing - is the beginning of the process of bringing the Roman Catholic colonisation of Ireland to an end.

It will be a painful and challenging time for many.

But hopefully, it will make Ireland a better and freer place to live.

Maybe then we can truly have an ISLAND OF SAINTS AND SCHOLARS rather than an island of  TAINTS AND COLLARS. 


69 comments:

  1. Who once described Ireland (island of) as 'priest-ridden and priest-bidden'? Awk! It was I, of course. (Faux Magna would have said: 'Awk! It was me...' No education.😆)

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    1. No I wouldn't! I would say 'Blue Magna Carta-ridden'.

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    2. It would be a sign of intellectual integrity to acknowledge the origin of the phrase you are adapting.

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    3. Another day of Bastardo Carta’s toxic stream of consciousness.

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    4. 15:40, the truth often is toxic...to those allergic to it. (Like you, and most Roman Catholic priests that ever were, are, and ever will be.😆)

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    5. No. Not the Truth, Bastardo - YOU. You are toxic. The Truth sets us free. Your bitter, bigoted, warped, thwarted, vicious little world view, is pure poison and every healthy person is allergic to it. This is because you yourself are enslaved at so many levels.

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    6. Magna Carta you wouldn’t know Truth if it bit you on your big fat butt. Your jaundiced view and warped interpretation of reality is not Truth, you sad little spoiled priesteen.

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    7. And you didnt acknowledge the source as you never do.

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    8. 17:35, yes, in your Orwellian world lies are truth, and vice-versa.

      If you have been set free, then why do I see such chains about you? Chains of self-delusion, self-deceit, priest worship, clericalism...I could go on, but my typing finger wearies.😆

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    9. My 'big fat butt', 17:51? Actually, I'm told I have quite a cu... No, I shouldn't boast.😆

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    10. 18:30, I AM the source of that epithet. The part 'priest-ridden' dates from the 17th century; the author is unknown. (Plonker.)

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    11. Pat, do we have to scroll through a magna carta play at the top of your blog before we get down to the real discussion. Sorry magna.

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    12. Mags, There are no chains on me you moron :-D

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    13. 18.35: The deeply deluded and damaged one speaks again, sadly rotting and drowning in his own foolishness and warped mind. How long must we witness his demise? Pat, set this man free and stop printing his blogging as it is fast enabling his total falling apart.

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  2. Pat, They must have recognised you in Dublin when the abused you on the streets. Personally as a priest of over 20 years standing who always wears the collar I have never been insulted or abused in Dublin. In fact if I encountered you on the street in Dublin I might be sorely tempted to abuse you too!

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    1. You would meet your match I can assure you.

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    2. There is thousands of other priests just like you that were never abused but sadly there is some that have. I don't think it's right to abuse anyone. If people have a think against the Catholic church let them but they should not tar everyone with the one brush because of a small few bad apples.

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    3. @00:17

      Old habits die hard.

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    4. @00.17
      Youre not a very good priest so are ya.

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    5. 00.17.....you aren't a very compassionate priest then.
      Hope you never in my parish.

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  3. Just a suggestion Pat. If you and others with blogs like yours and who write in papers and magazines as well as those who have access to radio and tv were to talk about the good priests that we have the likes of Peter Mcverry instead of the monster's which are small compared to the good priests and bishops them maybe people might see it's ok for priests to wear their clerical collars when out and about amongst the people.

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    1. If the 'good' priests acknowledged the constant covering up and looking the other way on abuses in the church and the hurt it is causing, we might all be in a better place.

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  4. 00.26: Pat, problem with that comment is that it proves you are a bully too! Far from the "kind' and 'caring" person you want us to believe you are!. Underneath, you are far too nasty. Much of your rhetoric fans and fuels hatred of priests. Sadly.

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    1. I am not bully. I do not mind bei g challenged.

      But I would not take abuse or harassment from anyone anywhere.

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  5. This has been brewing for a long time. The anti collar feeling was about in my day. I did not feel comfortable wearing it because of the model of Priesthood it represented to me. The abuse issues were just coming to light. The work of being a priest I had no problem with.

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    1. I shouldn't worry Sean because you gave your collar up ages ago. Now you have a Protestant one to wear in England - hypocrite.

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    2. MournemanMichael14 March 2018 at 14:07

      Reading your comments 11:53 set me thinking about the nature of integrity, and wondering just how many understand the concept.
      For what it's worth I believe many whose views and actions are criticised ( for having changed from a former position), are honestly and with integrity, following their new understanding.
      Surely an intelligent response to new insight is to adapt and change rather than obdurately persist with the status quo?
      From that perspective therefore I have to ask if it's reasonable to criticise change as hypocrisy?
      MMM

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    3. So what, 11:53? The 'Roman collar' is now a symbol of moral degeneracy, debauchery, defilement and disgrace. Who in their f**k*n' right mind would be proud to wear it these days?😆

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    4. Have you woken up Magna? It's the same pattern with you. Spend a whole evening verbally abusing posters on the blog.

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    5. Magna@16.53 I just had a horrible feeling. If you weren't kicked out of Maynooth you would be gladly wearing that same Collar. Shut up you ignoramus.

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    6. It's a shame for the collar-chasers who want to have a priest, or even marry him.

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    7. Maggie would fit in well with the bitter sad d priests who posts on here

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    8. 'Collar-chasers'? Marriage? Are we talkin' hetero -homo here?

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    9. Magna at 16.13, your comment is simply untrue. The roman collar is fast becoming a symbol of the persecuted one. In one way I admire those men who submit to wearing it. It can be, rarely in my experience, worn with real humility. If we keep using judgemental words like that then we will never do the heavy lifting that's required to help put things right. There seem to be two types of contributors here. Those who say the church is corrupt and needs to be destroyed and those who say there is great corruption and we need to help the church, as we know it, through its enormous difficulties.

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    10. Both, dear Magna, at least on mainland Britain.

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    11. 11.53 The word hypocrite is a bully word as stated above.

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    12. @ 21.57
      We, in Ireland, don't recognise the term "mainland Britain"
      We are not an offshore secondclass colony, thank you!
      Perhaps you didn't realise how offensive that term can be to some.
      You'll know better next time I dare say(--unless it was deliberate of course)

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  6. Sean, Your discomfort wearing clerical dress might have more to do with your innate unsuitability for the role than anything else.

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    1. 9.02 That's a fair comment. In terms of doing the "job" I gave 100% I have no issues now with the "protestant collar" which looks the same from across the street. My issue then was celibacy and my head was in a far different place. The views of church were different 25 years ago.

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    2. None is worthy...as the other one true but more enchanting church prays.

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  7. And what is yours Mise ?

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  8. Well I admire you Sean, you are not scared of criticisms.

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  9. It’s nice to see a few of the fully paid up members of the clergy club up and about early today. Bless!

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  10. They prob fasting for lent too.

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    1. Never mind the "fasting" - a little bit more abstaining wouldn't go amiss in some cases!

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  11. Many years ago I used to be regularly harangued between O'Connell Street and Trinity College by a colourful lady outraged by some alleged misdemeanour of "His Disgrace the Archbishop". One day I tried, "Nothing to do with me. I'm Church of Ireland" and got an earful about "the spawn of Henry VIII" though she never did bother me again. Does anyone else have memories of her?

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  12. I think the film Calvary sums everything up. Many good priests will be crucified for the sins of a few. The people we should really blame are those in power who just looked the other way. The institutional church has utterly disgraced itself. Within the church there is beautiful spiritual art work, music, buildings and books that the people of today desperately need. It really is a human tragedy.

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  13. The perpetrators rarely seem to come to justice, and any Vatican investigations never seem to come to anything either resulting in bitterness and resentment.

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  14. 10.42: Irrelevant comment re: issue being discussed. The anti-clericalism is very understandsble. As a priest I accept the deeply felt hurt by many who were abused and who seek to rebuild their lives, if ever. I accept too that a moral harshness was inflicted on people in the past, oftentimes alien to the gospel of Christ. Early in my priesthood I realised many anomalies and hypocrisies. However difficult it was to offer and live by a different vision of ministry, I've always tried to treat everyone equally and with respect, allowing each person the opoortunity to contribute meaningfully to their parish community. Thankfully I had many wonderful priests who inspired me in this task. However, now after almost 40 years, because of so many scandals, so many cultural and social revolutions, I feel on the margins, as if all my previous years have been in vain. Now it is very challenging to re-envision and re-imagine a new way forward. But my faith enables me to do what I'm given to do in a given situation and try to live by example. We need prophetic voices and more fundamentally the Church immediately requires the presence of visionary women, of which there are many.

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    1. 13.23 I understand what you are saying. At the time getting out was my salvation even though the way I did it was wrong. The question for older clerics is do they have the energy. I certainly wouldnt be able to repeat history even if I wanted to which I dont.

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  15. Please don’t feel on the margins...Hawking never gave up.
    After a lifetime of being married and rearing a family, many widows and widowers have to embark on a new and different way of living.
    Some don’t and stay stuck with thoughts of what they have lost.
    So never let age get anyone down, and never think of what might have been.
    Just do it...change the way you did stuff...we all can...I am!!!!!!!!

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  16. Pat have you seen the report in the latest Tablet about the French court case involving the Prefect of the CDF? He is accused of ordering the Archbishop of Lyon to cover up a case of the usual.

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    1. Yes, Cardinal Barbarin will be tried next month.

      That is what happens when you pledge allegiance to the Roman ***** rather than to Christ: the innocent will be sacrificed. For the ***** demands absolute loyalty and obedience from her collared pimps.

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    2. 16.58: The sick, demented, putrid stench has emerged from his nest. Ugly as ever, Magna.

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    3. 17.26: Just ignore the Magna nonsense. If this guy seeks fulfilment or happiness out of his vile, pousonous commentary, then he is seriously psycholigically and pathologically unwell. Not sympathy, but long term therapy is what he needs. That Pat allows his words to be printed is only encouraging him in his mindless, self destruct rampage.

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    4. Pat why do u allow a post like 17.26 ?
      Have you no regard for us your faithful?

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    5. Magna, for your own well being, seek help. Otherwise, you will descend into utter darkness and continue to be intensely disliked as at 17.26. Take the advice of others. If you have any real self respect, listen......

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    6. 19.31: Don't you think it's time to name Magna for what he is - as expressed by 17.26. He is now a toxic presence on this blog. The only true regard Pat can show his genuine followers is to cut Magna off whose words are just disgusting and offensive and come from a deeply flawed and warped mind. Magna is soulless.

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    7. Those who pass by note that 17:26, 19:25 and 21:56 mentioned NOTHING of what Barbarin did, or did not do (but should have done).

      The welfare of innocent children seems to mean absolutely NOTHING to the likes of 17:26, 19:25 and 21:56. WHY?

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  17. Pat, I was talking to someone this morning and we wondered if The Little Brothers are still in existence, it’s just that we don’t hear very much about them anymore?

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    1. The Little Brothers are still there. Things are going more slowly because of illness etc.

      It's good to let something grow very slowly and to put down deep roots.

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  18. I wish the Little Brothers every blessing.

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  19. what does 'Little' mean in this context? Are they dwarfs, or are they poorly endowed genitally? Please clarify!

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  20. I think 23.56 is extracting urine I don't like the word little but for different reasons. I respect the group for who they are. There is alot of 23 56 attitude on here which is sad.

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