Readers Blog: Once fawning Irish now too cynical

Maurice Fitzgerald, in your letters page of Thursday, January 25, dismisses the Catholic Church as hypocritical and outmoded.

The controversy about the possible removal of the Eighth Amendment of the Constitution on abortion is the occasion of his tirade.

The Catholic Church is honoured and respected, around the world, for its charitable and missionary work. This is true, despite the many faults of its members, clerical and lay. It is far from being “hypocritical and outmoded”. Whether Mr Fitzgerald likes it or not, that work will continue. The Church will still inform peoples’ consciences and foster moderation and humanity, regardless of what Mr Fitzgerald thinks.

He made the fatuous statement that the stance of the Church on abortion leaves the pregnant woman without rights.

She has all the human rights that all of us have.

But she doesn’t have the right to take the life of a third person, namely the child in her womb, for her own convenience, which is what those who propose abortion on demand up to 12 weeks’ gestation want.

The Irish have gone from being craven before the Church to utterly dismissive of it and its influence on society. Either position is irrational. The Irish tipped the cap to the Church at every turn and now believe that it has no role in the world.

This shift might be understandable, given the Church’s past excesses. But, to anybody who understands the role of religion in society, the last state is as irrational as the first.

Some action should be taken against those who slander God and religion. Ignorant, barbarous views should not be met with silence.

I protest against Mr Fitzgerald, and the many who unthinkingly share his views.

God grant, if necessary, that Church people, lay and clerical, be always able to counteract liberal and permissive agendas, even if they have to give their lives for the sake of good, as they did of old.

The penal laws may well be on the way back; but this time they will be enforced by a government of our own. This is not as far-fetched as it may seem.

Will there be an opt-out conscience clause for nurses and doctors, if the Eight Amendment is repealed? This is the pass to which ‘modern’ Ireland has come.

(Fr) D. O’Brien MSC 



Co Cork

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