21Oct Stones still Standing

Chris McDonnell reflects on the recent synod.
"What’s changed?
We don’t deny the faith of earlier generations by asking that question".
Chris is a retired head teacher having taught in London, Leeds and on Merseyside. Married with three children and eight grandchildren. He is a regular contributor to discussion in the catholic press, journals and blogs.

15Oct ‘Why Women felt compelled to speak out in Killaloe Diocese’

Kathleen McDonnell in her address at Claremorris explained why she and others in Killaloe diocese felt compelled to speak out against the introduction of the male only permanent diaconate.

30Sep Survey on permanent (male only) diaconate

Survey on permanent (male only) diaconate

29Sep CDF, Edinburgh, Kasper, and the local Church.

Seamus Ahearne, as usual, asks the pertinent questions about what is essential in belonging to church.
'I feel so embarrassed that such nonsense (banning and silencing) is still going on. Robust discussion is essential in our faith. Anselm said: ‘Theology is faith seeking understanding'

"If any of us are listening to the Christ of the Gospels in recent times – we would get something of these message: The Table is open. All comers are welcome. The outsiders are the insiders. The unlikely ones are the most acceptable ones. Never shut doors. Open hearts and open minds and open imaginations."

29Sep Can women’s voices be heard in Pope Francis’ Church?

Invitation to The McWilliam Park Hotel, Claremorris on Sat October 11th from 2.00 - 4.30pm. Admission is free and all are welcome.

29Sep Interesting times in Limerick Diocese

Brendan Leahy, bishop of Limerick, has announced a Synod for the diocese of Limerick

28Sep A civil war in the Church?

Brendan Hoban in his Western People column questions the commitment of the leadership of the Irish Church to follow Pope Francis on the issue of family.
"Ireland will be represented at the synod in Rome by an archbishop and a nun. In a way no more needs to be said about the response of the Irish Church. While both may well be up to speed on the realities of marriage and family life in Ireland today, neither is married or has children so the signals are all wrong. Isn’t it inexpressibly sad for our Church that there was in Ireland no one the Irish bishops could find to trust who was married and had children?"

22Sep “The signs of the times which can offer us hope and courage.” Pope Francis

The pope said the enormous amount of work and demands being made on pastoral workers "make us run the risk of becoming frightened and withdrawing in on ourselves out of fear and self-defense."

"And out of that springs the temptation of self-sufficiency and clericalism, that codifying the faith into rules and instructions, which the scribes, Pharisees and doctors of the law did during the time of Jesus. We will have everything exact and everything just-so, but the faithful and those who are seeking will continue to be hungry and thirsty for God," Pope Francis explained.
If pastoral ministry uses the same approach the scribes and Pharisees took, "never, never will we be witnesses of being close" to people like Jesus was, he said.

21Sep Pope Francis’ advice to Bishops

Andra Tornielli provides a translation of Pope Francis' address to bishops and says that the speech the Pope gave to bishops appointed during the last year was one of the most important pronouncements of his pontificate: Be present in your dioceses and make sure you are reachable, welcome everyone without discrimination, don't be pessimists who despair because “the fort is under attack”

18Sep Different forms of priestly ministry?

In light of the discussion due to take place at the AGM and as part of the ongoing debate in our church about vocation and ordained ministry we include these two contributions of how ministry is already being carried out in varied ways in church. Thanks to Brian Eyre and Mossy Hynan for these contributions.