Archive for category Church

Referendum Postscript

The Referendum to Repeal the Eight Amendment to the Irish Constitution will change several aspects of life in Ireland but it will also leave several unchanged. The removal of the 8th amendment means that for the first time the Irish government will be free to make it legal to end a pregnancy without any reason. […]

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New papal nuncio from Nigeria has Irish faith line

On the feast of Our Lady of Fatima, May 13th last, Pope Francis was at Fatima to mark the centenary of the apparitions. On the same day, his press office in the Vatican published the daily bulletin and it included the following short note: “The Holy Father has appointed as apostolic nuncio in Ireland His […]

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Living in a disappearing priesthood

My historical sense of catholicism in Ireland, which I learned in school, was speckled with events that were depicted as reference points in Irish history. The Wild Geese, Cromwell, Fr Murphy of Boolavogue, Nano Nagle, Daniel O’Connell and Catholic Emancipation, the Great Famine and the soupers, the War of Independence, the Maynooth Mission to China, male and female […]

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‘They’ve taken the Lord’

The women who were the first witnesses to the empty tomb and the Resurrection of Jesus summarised the situation in this way for the Apostles. “They have taken the Lord out of he tomb,” Mary said, “and we don’t know where they have put him.” Sadly, the same phrase applies today to a small church […]

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Life is an ocean, and the church is a boat

I’ve been doing a lot of twisting and turning in my mind of late, trying to describe accurately what it’s like being a priest in the Irish Catholic Church these days. The scriptures are loaded with images and parables but none seem to fit. Many pastoral letters from various popes paint more ideas and they […]

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Among the ways to wed

I don’t remember how many times I have participated in the Rite of Marriage at non-Catholic churches but there have been several. I have always experienced hospitality and kindness from the clergy of the other Christian churches. Today was no different. It was my first time being in St. Mary’s (Church of Ireland) Church, Dunmanway. I […]

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The Holy See’s new directive on funerals and cremation

I heard a few minutes of two radio programmes today and both were dealing with funeral related topics! Then into my Facebook status comes an update from the Tablet magazine in London to tell me that the Vatican has issued a new directive about cremations and . Then the local undertaker calls to make plans […]

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When sport and faith compete

There are a lot of Sundays at Mass time when some truths may not be spoken out of fear of being devoured on social media or on a radio programme. So we tend to let obvious difficulties just slip by. One of these is the interplay between sport and the faith and worship life of […]

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