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New Idea for DFTBA News

18/06/2012

Ireland has never had a proper hurricane. Sure, we had the tail end of Hurricane Charlie, which buffeted the island for a few days. However we have never seen that awesome power of nature, no natural disasters. No uncontrollable change wrought by destruction.

It is surprising then, that Ireland has changed, changed by no natural disaster, but one man-made. Throughout the world the Catholic Church have been buffeted by the destructive winds of change, tearing at anything not perfect pure, but nowhere is that more felt than Ireland. Forty years ago, one third of the Irish population, 1.25 million people turned out to a large park in Dublin for a papal mass given by John Paul II. Forty before that 500,000 people turned out for the closing mass of the 1832 Eucharistic Congress.

These gatherings were symbols of the power of the Catholic Church in Ireland, a land where 90% of us still claim membership of the church. However no number near that was seen with this congress. Perhaps to give us a sense of what was to come, RTE, the state broadcaster cut the footage of the opening mass for a football game (not that anyone watched the mass.)

A disappointing week for the church was shown with the near empty stands of a relatively small stadium that they held the mass in. In a land that claims such a connection to the church, the former land of saints and scholars, I cannot help but think that there must have been a hint of sadness in the eyes of Cardinal Sean Brady as he surveyed the scene. (Not that we care.)

So what happened, what massive hurricane of change ravaged the church, simple, abuse. Abuse of children, of power, but more importantly of trust. Ireland is a young country, one who had put so much faith in the Catholic Church, but that faith was betrayed.

But DFTBA News is a positive source for news. I do not mean to dwell on these stories. I merely write this to introduce a new project for us. This coming weekend several of us will, instead of our regular posts, be giving our opinion as to how church and state can work together, or not as the individual opinion may be.

I invite you all to write your own piece to be included in this. I promise to post everything that is well thought out and respectful. I understand that some may want to defend the church, or any one of them, I would love to have people with honest opinions say them. If anyone wants to respond to this article go ahead as well, DFTBA News wants to open discussion, and we need your help with that.

~Sean

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2 comments

  1. Actually I know people who went to the Congress and they have pictures of a completely full stadium. All seats and half of the pitch were full. You should also take into account that a lot of elderly people who would like to go cannot travel to such an event. You should get your facts right before writing an article like this. I have no interest in the catholic church at all so don’t think this is just someone standing up for them without reason. In my opinion Catholicism is a load of codswollop!


    • I think the point was that while 80000 people almost filling to capacity a sporting venue is significant, it pales in comparison to the days of yore, so to speak, when pilgrims flocked in their millions.



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