Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Dublin diocese is an unhappy place

Without trying to re-hash controversy about it again, apart from the riding rough shod over the rubrics regarding the gender of the owners of the feet the Pope washed last Holy Thursday. I was disappointed that the feet the Pope washed were not the feet of priests, it is not in the rubrics, but it has been the custom of the Roman Pontiff to wash the feet of priests who are from his diocese. It is an important sign for the world's bishops and clergy.

A good bishop's first responsibility must be to his clergy, before he is the Father of anyone else he is the Father in God of his co-workers, his priests, the promise of fealty made by the priest to his bishop at ordination places the both in unique position in the modern world, it is not one of the managed and manager, and certainly not one of employer and employed which increasingly it tends to become today, the model is actually that of God the Father, the loving Father of his sons, to them he is supposed to be the good Shepherd. Above all he is supposed to strengthen them, first of all because he loves them and secondly so that through them he might serve the flock of Christ.

I occasionally get emails from clergy in the Dublin diocese, it is difficult to tell from this distance whether they are typical or exceptional. No where in Ireland does the Church seem to have lost the faith more quickly, no where do the clergy seem to have been more bruised and battered by the fall out of the child abuse crisis than in Dublin. From across the water for a long time Archbishop Martin seemed to be the only effective Irish Bishop, the only one to address the terrible history presented in the media of the Irish Church, it seems almost as if all his efforts and energies have been spent on this issue.

 Fr Eamonn Whelan has published his own reflections on the relationship of Dublin's clergy with their Archbishop, who rather than offering healing and paternal care seems to be bullying and domineering and damaging further those who have traumatised by the faults of their confreres. What what I hear and from what Fr Eamonn reports Dublin is an unhappy place.

Charity begins at home!


gemoftheocean said...

Oh. Dear. I will take your word from reports that Dublin is an unhappy place. But I think the phrase "Charity begins at home" is WIDELY misunderstood these days. I was taught that the meaning WASN'T "we take care of our own and the heck with everyone else, they can come 2nd even if their needs are greater than the one in the home" but "we LEARN charity from examples we see our parents give us - and we extend it to consider OTHERS our "family" too as they are all God's family.

As far as the foot washing thing STILL rocking your world -- it really isn't THAT big of a deal, frankly. I can see it EITHER way. You can either do it with JUST priests, or GROWN men to represent the apostles (you always wonder which guy is "playing" Judas, but never mind-and please, no young altar boys if you go this route) In that case it is essentially a representation of a historical snap shot. A moment in time when Christ enjoined on his chosen that because He is showing them the example of service in a most menial way - that they are to follow [future tense] His example, and be servants. For to really lead is to serve. The church hierarchy, in truth is an INVERTED pyramid. With the Pope "at the bottom" as it were holding up the bishops, who hold up the priests, who hold up the people. Is not one of the pops titles: "The servant of the servants of God?"

That said, it is two thousand years on. The rubrics are given in the pope's name, and he is the ultimate authority of changes, so he has no need to apply to himself for a waiver to wash the feet of anyone he chooses.

So if he chooses to wash any 12 random people's feet to show the intent of the message Jesus had, he is showing that the church -- of which he is the chief messenger on earth - is the servant of ALL people. And not just the guys in "the club." In that case, the 12 should be a representation of society at large to best illustrate this. Men/women, boys/girls, people of all colors and social status. The church is to serve all- and frankly people outside the church as well as Christ came on earth to open up heaven to potentially all mankind. Charity may "begin" at home -- it's where we learn it - but it's certainly not to STAY "at home."

[What would NOT fly is the pope washing 12 women's feet.]

BJC said...

Somebody's just posted this link up on the Protect the Pope blog. Off-topic a bit but relevant for the Church in Ireland.


Supertradmum said...

Father, I have spent almost nine months in Ireland in the last year and a half and I have had many discussions with priests on the situation here. First of all, Ireland did not, according to these good priests, lose the Faith so fast. Priests who are old and wise told me that the process started over three generations ago, as the Irish did not take responsibility for their own faith, did not appropriate an adult faith and were anti-intellectual about their faith.

The efforts of priest since WWII here has been to get the adults to take personal Catholicism and make it a reality instead of relying on cultural Catholicism.

Also, the parents and grandparents did not pass on the Faith. I have been told by people in their 60s and 50s that there was no home rosary, no home prayers or Bible reading, no saints days celebrations and so on.

Dublin is no longer Irish, and I am living here again for three months. I daily hear Russian, various Indian dialects, Urdu, Punjabi, and Polish. I never see young Irish in the Churches, except for one young man who stands out, and on Sunday, at the TLM all the young people I have met and made friends with are foreigners-Polish, Asian, Scottish, Brazilian and so on and daily Mass attendance is the same.

The Irish have only themselves to blame for the lack of faith, and so-called Catholics are pro-abortion and pro-gay marriage, as I have discovered.

There are many reasons for the rot-the Celtic Tiger was but a symptom not a cause.

I have attended pro-life rallies and I am one of the younger participants in the pro-life rosaries

I am, frankly, tired of the lie which states how did Catholic Ireland die so fast? It was a slow death brought on by lax parents, and very bad catechesis in the so-called Catholic schools.

And, it is a contracepting culture as well. The lie of Catholic Ireland is not helped by a weak hierarchy, who still, after all this time, have NOT made a joint statement about the abortion bill or the fact that Catholic hospitals will have to do abortions.

With bishops refusing to stand up and a lax laity, preferring to tolerate sin rather than fight it, Ireland will become more and more evil. So goes another European nation into the darkness which it cooperated with too long...

Ma Tucker said...

It is best to refer to him as Archbishop DIARMUID Martin as there is a tremendous Archbishop Eamon Martin of Armagh now in place. Archbishop Eamon is a great hope and consolation for the country. It really would not do to mix the two men up.