May 25th, 2015
Brendan Hoban in his weekly Western People column offers his thoughts on the outcome of the marriage referendum.
"A clear message for the Church is that the bishops’ view was roundly rejected not just by the gay community, or those sympathetic to its views, but by tens of thousands of ‘ordinary’ Catholics."
"There’s a massive change taking place in Ireland and, once again, the Catholic Church finds itself out-thought and out-manoeuvred, too influenced by the conservative right, ....
Trying to keep out the tide is always a failed enterprise. When will we learn that simple truth?"
May 23rd, 2015
Seamus Ahearne gives his thoughts in the aftermath of the debate, discussion and decision of the marriage referendum.
" The sun still shines. The rain still comes. We all go about our business. We make our arguments and then accept what has happened. No one has died. It isn't the death of life or family or marriage as we know it. "
May 20th, 2015
Lester Feder reports for buzzfeed on the referendum 'that is testing the limits of progressives’ hope for change under Pope Francis'.
May 19th, 2015
In his weekly Western People column Brendan Hoban ponders the question that many are asking themselves this week, 'how will I vote', because "come Friday, there’s no middle ground between Yes and No."
May 12th, 2015
Brendan Hoban in his weekly Western People column questions the wisdom of bishops threatening to have priests withdraw from the civil aspect of Catholic marriages in advance of the marriage referendum.
"Let me say, first of all, that in my opinion (for what it’s worth) Archbishop Martin (and other bishops) are unwise to even suggest that priests solemnising marriages in Catholic Churches would, in the event of a YES vote being carried, no longer agree to act in a civil capacity."
Request: Comments on the substantive issue of the referendum should be directed to the thread 'The Marriage Referendum: Archbishop Diarmuid Martin explains why he is voting No; Fr. Pádraig Standún explains why he will be voting Yes'
May 12th, 2015
As a result of the 2nd international meeting of priest associations and lay reform groups that recently took place in Limerick an open letter has been sent to Pope Francis.
"Pope Francis, we – priests and deacons, ministers and Church citizens, women and men – need you! We appeal to you to clear the way for new forms of parish life, their ministry and management. Let us open the priestly office to everyone who has the charism. Let us develop new management models and forms of pastoral ministry so that parishioners can participate according to their charisms. Let us establish a new culture of co-responsibility and joint decision-making in all structures of our Church. Let us remember how Jesus understood and lived community. God’s spirit compels us. Let us be courageous and tackle this together!"
May 12th, 2015
Chris McDonnell reminds us that if the Jubilee Year of mercy is to mean anything then there is a need for people to feel and experience having mercy shown them.
He asks, "How will the Church be a sign of mercy in the Jubilee year? It will not be enough to declare a Jubilee without our showing mercy in a real and recognisable manner".
May 8th, 2015
Fr. Pádraig Standún, writing in this week's column, Standún’s Station, in The Connaught Telegraph explains why he will vote for the marriage referendum.
Archbishop Diarmuid Martin, Archbishop of Dublin, in an address to Diocesan Communications Officers explains why he is voting against the marriage referendum.
May 4th, 2015
Brendan Hoban, in his Western People column, tells us we have to face reality when considering the future for our Church, even if in our circumstances that denial is understandable. However he is adamant that "Fantasy is no help to the Irish Catholic Church."
May 1st, 2015
Sean McDonagh keeps us informed about the forthcoming encyclical that deals with ecological issues. He includes a quote from Neil Thorns, the head of advocacy at England's Catholic Agency for Overseas Development (CAFOD), as saying that “the anticipation around Pope Francis’s forthcoming encyclical is unprecedented. We have seen thousands of our supporters commit to making sure their MPs know climate change is affecting the poorest communities.”
What will be the response of the church in Ireland and its bishops?