26Jul Breaking New Ground

Chris McDonnell writes in The Catholic Times about the shortage of priests and states that "It will soon be too late to consider a possible resolution to the problems we face unless we take active steps now to address our difficulties."
"there is a now a clear necessity for Commissions to be set up both in the UK and Ireland by the respective bishops’ conferences to examine the whole issue before the model we are currently struggling to manage breaks and we are left to pick up the pieces."

09Jul International Conference of Reform Movements in Chicago

Tony Flannery reports on the the third International Conference of Reform Movements which is scheduled for Chicago next October.
"we aim to enter into deep dialogue, understanding our similarities and our differences, enjoying our diversity and finding common ground leading to common action. In this way we hope to strengthen our commitment, and energise our work, for Church reform."

04Jul A failure of imagination and courage

Brendan Hoban writing in the Western People continues to question when the bishops will find the courage and imagination to face the 'vocation crisis' in the Church in Ireland.
"The simple truth is that the problem with vocations to the priesthood is that young Irish men are no longer saying YES to a celibate vocation, their parents are encouraging them to say No and the vast majority of priests in parishes know that prioritising celibacy over the Eucharist is not just bad theology, it isn’t working."

26Jun Sunday Eucharist is centrally important

Pádraig McCarthy reminds us, and the bishops, that St. John Paul II said "among the many activities of a parish, none is as vital or as community-forming as the Sunday celebration of the Lord's Day and his Eucharist".
John Paul also underlined the importance of “ensuring that parish assemblies are not without the necessary ministry of priests”, but according to Padraig 'the Church is not ensuring this.'
Time has run out for action to be taken but we wait, and wait, and wait......

21Jun Stifle debate, stifle church

Tony Flannery has written an article, published in The Irish Times and on his own website, about the attempted stifling of the debate about the ordination of women.

"The efforts made by the Vatican to silence discussion on the ordination of women over the past 50 years have been both unsuccessful and unwise."
"Though Pope Francis has said that this door is closed, his consistent call for open discussion and dialogue, and indeed for open doors, has created a climate where the whole issue of women’s place in the church is now centre stage."
"The effort by the Vatican to stifle debate, often by using methods that should never be part of the Christian community, is doing enormous damage to the church."

14Jun What do we need? Catholic Intellectuals or Cheer Leaders

Brendan Hoban, writing in the Western People, welcomes Archbishop Diarmaid Martin's recent comments about the lack of 'people of intellect who can address the pressing issues of the day' in the church in Ireland and the need for ‘competent lay men and women well educated in their faith’.
Archbishop Martin's comments, read in conjunction with Siobhán Larkin's research http://www.associationofcatholicpriests.ie/2016/06/nurturing-the-roots/ ,
point to a definite need in church and is a call for urgent action to address this issue.

19May Bishops meet with Association of Catholic Priests

Report on a meeting between the Association of Catholic Priests and representatives of the Irish Episcopal Conference – Council for the Clergy – in the Columba Centre in Maynooth on Thursday, May 19, 2016

15May Priestless Church Buildings

What to do with church buildings when there are no priests is an issue that will face most parishes in the immediate future, despite the fact that church authorities soldier on as though no drastic changes are on the horizon.
Alan McGill puts forward a suggestion on how these buildings can be utilised 'by predominantly or entirely lay communities so as to continue to be oases of prayer and pastoral care'.
Alan McGill works fulltime as Director of Faith Formation and Liturgy at the Basilica of the Sacred Heart of Jesus in the city-center of Atlanta. He is a native of Dublin.

08May ‘My experience at the hands of the CDF’

Notice of talk by Fr Gerard Moloney CSsR before "We Are Church" AGM

11Apr Limerick Diocese Synod ….. a real marker, but the journey goes on

Ainead Ní Mhuirthile gives a personal reaction to her experience as a Synod Delegate in the Limerick Diocesan Synod.
Ainead quotes one priest saying “I thought I’d never see the day where lay people would have a vote in a Church Synod,” adding “should have happened a year or two after Vatican 2 of course…”
and Bishop Leahy "This Synod is a real marker, but the journey goes on.."