If you would like to submit a contribution to our Readers Blog section then follow this link. Be sure to include your full name, address and contact number otherwise your submission will not be considered for publication. We will contact you prior to publication.

Ring changes over The Angelus

Open Letter to Minister for Communication, Energy and Natural Resources

Dear Minister,

In your new role as minister with responsibility for broadcasting may I draw your attention to the prime-time slots assigned to the Angelus on RTÉ 1 radio and television? In my view, religion should be treated as a commodity in the same way as other basic needs. Just as all of us crave food, water, etc., a majority of people have a need to transcend the reality of their daily struggle to survive and to find deeper meaning to their corporeal existence.

But the State needs to be neutral in its broadcasting policy. The Republic is now a multi-cultural society with a myriad of religious philosophies and practices. In exclusively promoting one religious sector that propagated an institutional belief system leading to the human rights abuses of the Magdalen Laundries, the mother and baby homes, illegal adoptions, child sexual and physical abuse and the torturous practice of symphysiotomy, can only lead to dissent and racial/religious grievances; we’re all acutely aware of the possible consequences of such preferential treatment.

Perhaps a more concrete argument might be made to bring the broadcasting “powers that be” to their senses. The one minute prime-time slots on RTÉ 1 radio and RTÉ 1 television would cost the Catholic Church approximately €2 million per annum if it was asked to pay for such slots. It is unconscionable that the taxpayer should be asked to foot the bill for such promotion.

The Department of Education would also be wise to take a more neutral stance in matters of religion in state-funded schools. In treating religion as a commodity, our classrooms could be rented out to religious groups after school hours and the proceeds could be used to promote and foster special talents such as the arts and sport.

It’s now time to review the special status conferred on the Catholic Church by RTÉ and other state-funded institutions and the collusion in this practice by successive governments. As a constituent, I now call on you, minister, to justify why this policy should continue.

Good luck in your brief.

Anne O’Reilly

42 Dundrum Gate

Dundrum

Dublin 16


Lifestyle

Setting sail to travel the world as part of your job has a romance all of its own but for marketing manager Máire Cronin and engineer Mark Crowe it led to love.Wedding of the Week: Cruise ship co-workers Máire and Mark sail off into sunset

One of the genres that has seen exponential growth in the podcast world is the sleepcast. Open Spotify on your phone in the evening and a number of offerings are available, writes Eoghan O'SullivanThe Podcast Corner: podcasts that will put you to sleep

Cutting-edge animation was paired with the look of an old-fashioned family film for Call Of The Wild, writes Esther McCarthyCall of the Wild: CGI dogs have their day in new Disney adventure

A new exhibition recalls the late entertainer Thom McGinty, writes Richard Fitzpatrick.Remembering The Diceman: street performer and social activist

More From The Irish Examiner