Saturday, May 23, 2015

Those Irish

So a victory for tolerance, equality, social justice; a defeat for intolerance, inequality and Catholicism. Couldn't be simpler!

And yet tolerance, equality and social justice are precisely what the Catholic Church in Ireland for the last few decades. What I am told has been missing has been that rather intolerant idea of a personal Saviour, with a rather rigorous, even judgemental outlook: Jesus Christ.

Presumably what the Irish vote actually reveals is the feeling of the majority of Europe, even the rest of the world. Is it that it it is only a few reactionary Catholics and fellow travellers who hold out for a traditional view of family, sex and homosexuality?

The big question is: is there as place for the 'Antis' in contemporary European society? David Cameron might have had to use the government whip to get a majority for his marriage equalities legislation through the British Parliament, in Ireland that wasn't the case, it was a popular referendum,. Yes we can argue it was funded by foreign money, that the 'No' campaign was hounded off the streets, but even so from one end of the country to the other this was a popular referendum and greeted with popular enthusiasm.

So where now for Catholics and those who hold on to traditional values? Ireland historically doesn't do tolerance, neither does it tolerate for too long an oppressor, even if it can't quite throw off the yoke, it bears it with dis-ease.

For now there is a pause for partying but soon there will be slew of legislation to facilitate the popular will and to force opposition out of society. One might have thought the Asher's bakery judgement north of the border might have been a warning but obviously not.

Would the vote had been different if the provisions at the end of Pope Benedict's letter to the Catholics of Ireland had actually been implemented? Similarly would things have turned out differently had the present Pope spoken and not allowed himself to be portrayed as 'open' to homosexual culture, or even if the Irish bishops had been stronger? Probably not.

What is so remarkable is how Ireland has thrown of Catholicism, or put it another way, what is remarkable is how easy contemporary Catholicism is thrown off. Those roots which were once presumed to run deep into the Irish psyche, that helped her survive poverty and oppression, that produce enormous numbers of priests and religious who shaped the Catholic world, are shown to have been in reality shallow indeed.


Sixupman said...

An headline from the International Business Times -

"Ireland Gay Marriage Vote: Irish Catholic Church Takes A Cue from Pope Francis. Charts New Course Amid Waning Influence".

According to BBC interview: "Abortion next target"!

Mrs McLean said...

It's a tragedy, and I wait in dread for the onslaught against the No-voters, the humiliation of priests and laymen dragged before Irish courts for not burning incense before the god of gay sex. "I'm a good Catholic, and so is my husband, so why can't we have our wedding in a CHURCH?" they will hear. "Why won't this woman bake our wedding cake? Why won't this band play at our reception? MAKE THEM DO IT OR MAKE THEM SUFFER!"

Mark said...

The Irish abuse scandals have discredited the church in Ireland.


The vote is not in any way surprising. For many the Church in Ireland is a cesspit of ignorance and hypocrisy.

Solitary Sojourning said...

Just a hundred years ago Ireland produced the great Fr. William Doyle. Now they have fallen for this garbage.

Father, we might have a smaller Church for the future however let us pray that it is a faithful one.

Frederick Jones said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jane said...

First it was money from Europe that turned Ireland into the Celtic Tiger, and no tiger believes it needs a Saviour or a Church.

Then it was the abuse crisis which made it ok not just to ignore the Church but to turn against her and feel justified.

Add to that the
consciences desensitised through disobedience to Humanae Vitae.

A three-pronged attack - wealth, injustice and disobedience - and Holy Ireland lies in the mud. Good St Patrick, please pray for her.

JARay said...

Ireland has sunk into the very pits of intolerance. If ever a country had a soul then Ireland has sold hers to the devil himself.
1) Finland has given 500,000 reservists notice to prepare for war with Russia.
2) ISIl has advanced further in Syria and Iraq.
3) China has warned America to stay out of the airspace over the Spratly Islands.
4) Afghanistan is simply waiting for the Americans to move out before the Taliban take over.
5) England is not immune to earthquakes.
6)Earthquakes have killed thousands in Nepal.
Scripture says that there will be wars and rumours of wars before the end of the word comes and we are told that God Himself said "Will there be any Faithful when I came again?"
How long, O Lord, how long?!

Patricius said...

"And the whole people answering, said: His blood be upon us and our children."

At least in the rest of the world this abomination was imposed by the ruling elite. To the Irish alone belongs the shame of having voted for it themselves.

Frederick Jones said...

Why must I delete my comment given above? It merely makes a true historical assertion and

follows it by an axiom of moral theology. As for the latter St Thomas More said as much to Mr Rich

about the powers of the English Parliament.

However I happily accept the judgment of Fr Blake as to whether it should be deleted.

Consternation said...

Decisions made by popular acclamation....

2015: Ireland and same sex 'marriage'

1938: Austria and Anschluß with Nazi Germany

33AD: 'Crucify him! Crucify him!'

John Vasc said...

"Those roots which were once presumed to run deep into the Irish psyche, that helped her survive poverty and oppression..."

Yes, absolutely right, Father. But I wonder if one of the strong motivations for this kind of popular wave of materialist modernism has to do with that poverty-stricken Irish past, and the desperate collective wish to put the humiliation of centuries behind them? 'Look how modern we are!' So, the baby of traditional belief thrown out with the bathwater of the historical past?

And of course the next logical stage in that deliberate amnesia would be Abortion 'reform' - with real babies being discarded...

faith said...

As an Irish Catholic I find the comments here very much anti-Irish. Perhaps we could lay the blame at the feet of the porn being broadcast day and night into Irish homes by the BBC for the last thirty years. British soap operas that promote values totally at odds with the Christian faith. Perhaps we could lay the blame at the feet of the British abortion clinics who offer to kill Irish unborn children for a sum of money and have destroyed the lives of women for the last 40 years. Perhaps all the priests who have abused children and still do have discredited the name Christian and are to blame. But what's the point. The world is a very dark place at the moment-ISis is breaking into the back of the house while the orgies and parties are going on in the front rooms of all the countries of Europe. But the grace of God is at its strongest since the time of Our Lord for those who really want to know, love and serve God. Deo gratias. Pope Benedict's prophesy will come true, a small, scaled-down Church of true worshippers who will be salt and light in a dark dark world.

GOR said...

Sadly, I no longer recognize the Ireland where I was raised. The outcome was predictable as so many people have lost their faith and become totally secularized. The bias of the politicians, the media, businesses and ‘celebrities’ was disgusting – aided and abetted by some recalcitrant clergy who have betrayed their calling.

But, God is not mocked. There will be a price to pay – sooner or later.

Hoser said...

I'm not at all tuned into Irish Catholicism, except that liberalism in the Church in general has grown leaps and bounds in Europe for decades, probably since the 1930's when the Church of England first made birth control OK. But this debacle of Irish politics is just mind blowing to us in the States. We fight tooth and nail to maintain the Sacrament of Marriage and the Irish give it away in a rush to the voting booth. What is the deal? I have never seen the extent of the depravity of the world over the past ten years. I wonder what God is thinking? It is time for a new Chastisement? I would not blame him if he allowed one.

Our Lady of Good Success-pray for us. said...

'Ireland's' apostasy is where anyone in post-Christendom lives these days.

"what is remarkable is how easy contemporary Catholicism is thrown off." That's the truth of it. As to 'roots', however, how can contemporary Catholicism have any 'roots' (even if they were just 50 years old) since Francis has already declared the Catholicism of JPII outdated, and likewise JPII's Catholicism declared Paul VI's outdated and likewise Paul VI's Catholicism declared John XXIII's outdated)?

Contemporary Catholicsm, what some call the post-VII Church, or the Concilliar Church, is drowning in the Humanist religion lauded by its prelates. Humanisitic religiosity affirms 'God' only as an immanent entity, an element of the human world and therefore ipso facto subject to change, and with a perceived 'goodness' that is as mutable and as idiosyncratic as any human individual or individual generation cares to make it. It is 'god' from the bottom up. Meanwhile, the God of revelation, our Rock and our Redeemer, Who declared that there are sins that 'cry out to heaven for vengeance' and His immutable, transcendant voice is drowned out by din of contrary humanism.

BTW - the link to Benedict's letter to Ireland - one almost forgets that a Pope is capable of doing and saying something Catholic.

John Fisher said...

What is wrong with Ireland? Usually voting to amend a Constitution involves a 2/3rds majority of ALL voters. There is not room for only 51-68% of voters turning out to decide such issues. In any event Parliament has no jurisdiction. How can a Christian country even have civil marriage even before the issue of same sex pseudo marraige? There are 9 way to participate in the sins of another. How could bishops including the Archbishop of Dublin say it is possible to vote either Yes or no with a good conscience. Does this apply to all sins? The sexual acts of homosexuals which I will not spell are not at all the same as the sexual act that usually leads to bearing children. They are all ordered to achieving a sexual serotonin high... and that is their sole end. Humans can form all sorts of attachments that result from the amount of emotional effort invested. Pope Francis said nothing. No letters read from pulpits. I am disgusted by the modern Irish. I have family there. I note Roscommon alone defied the trend!

RichardT said...

Ireland turned its back on Christian marriage in 1995 when it allowed divorce (again, by referendum). This latest vote is just detail.

Divorce is the much bigger issue. Very few people will be tempted into same sex marriage, and most of them will be living in sin already, but divorce strikes at the heart of Christian marriage.

I'm not saying this latest vote isn't wrong, just that we lost the war for marriage long ago.

Anonymous said...

My feeling is, that this vote is a not really a vote for support for homosexual rights, but a massive two fingers up at the Irish Church for its past arrogance and coverings-up of child abuse.

Sadie Vacantist said...

It's the self-inflicted wounds which are difficult to take. The Irish hierarchy call this a "wake-up" call? Where have they been for the last 50 years? How are younger Irish clergy being empowered by their seniors to re-evangelise? New as in "new evangelisation" is in reality code for anti or non-evangelisation.

Cosmos said...

Fr Blake,

As your article initially alludes to . . .

Contemporary Catholicism is NOT easily thrown off. "Yes" is contemporary Catholicism. Avoiding "No" and negativity is a fundamental principle of the re-conceived faith.

And there can be no doubt, contemporary catholicism embraces homosexuality.

You, on the other hand, are not a part of contemporary Catholicism. You embrace a bunch of official positions that are written down in various documents that are completely ignored. This makes you a regressive stuck in the past without the freedom of the Spirit who is always moving "Forward!"...

In contemporary Catholicism, its all about the Spirit over the Letter. There can be no apostasy because everything is kept off the books. Nothing ever rises to the level of official teaching, so nothing can contradict it. An no one can quite define "official teaching" anyway.

Welcome to modernism, Catholic-style!

Eriugena said...

And that referendum in 1995 was held on Corpus Christi. A whole slew of Bishops who procreate children and use diocesan money (pennies given by the poor faithful to polish statues of St Philomena and iron corporals) to pay their school fees, what do they care about the Sacrament of Matrimony? (or the Sacrament of Priesthood, for that matter.) The Hierarchy has a duty to remind us of these things and inform our consciences, And yet, what do they do? They live more uxorio with their housemaids and then say that voting yes in the latest referendum is quite alright...

Patrick Sheridan said...

The Roman Catholic church in Ireland was never a force for good and lost virtually all credibility in the wake of the sex abuse scandals, the Magdalene laundries and the brutality of the schools dominated by the religious orders (the Christian Brothers in particular). My grandfather was an Irishman from Strabane and sent my father to a Church of England school because he did not want my father to undergo the kind of psychological and physical abuse to which he had been subject as a child.

The two great evils in 20th century Irish history were Partition and the Roman Catholic Church. Nobody can deny that this plebiscite is a tragedy for Ireland but you can't really blame the Irish for not listening to a church with such a disgraceful reputation lecture them on sexual morality; that is even if any of the Irish prelates spoke in defence of Marriage at all. I expect they just gave up. An absolute travesty.

Long-Skirts said...


Flee Ireland
The Faith is dead
Go west young man
Where the Truth is said

Where the Truth is said
At daily Mass
Where wine's Blood red
In gold not glass

In gold not glass
The wafers wait
For ordained hands
To consecrate

To consecrate
And multiply
For starving souls
God hears your cry

He hears your cry
“I know mine.”
Where priests are formed
Of Melchisedech's line

Of Melchisedech's line
A great Seminary stands
With other Christs
And chrismed hands

And chrismed hands
Hell's depths do hate
Hell spreads her errors
To hesitate

To hesitate
'fore God's gift grand?
There are Priests being formed
Flee, Ireland!!

M. Prodigal said...

It is time for remaining true faithful to double down in their prayer lives and quests for holiness. This is spiritual warfare! And the true Catholics are going to be persecuted in many arenas for not compromising with evil as the majority have done. The road is NARROW that leads to paradise and BROAD that leads to perdition. Sadly, too many wolves in shepherds clothing are guiding souls down that broad road. God is not mocked and there will be an answer from heaven but in the meantime, it is for the true faithful to continue to live HOLY lives and set the example, no matter what. It is for the true faithful to console the Heart of Jesus and to remain close to the most Blessed Mother seeking protection under her mantle.

Jeanne Patterson said...

Thanks be to God that my Irish-American mother passed on to her heavenly reward a year ago and didn't have witness this. It would have truly broken her heart.
To Mary, the Queen of Ireland, we pray:
Mary, powerful Virgin, You are the mighty and glorious protector of the Church. You are the marvelous help of Christians. You are awe inspiring as an army in battle array. In the midst of our anguish, struggle, and distress, defend us from the power of the enemy, and at the hour of hour death, receive our soul in Heaven. Amen.

Sadie Vacantist said...

The poet on here says "go West". In reality, it is in the East where the natural law is being preserved most effectively.

I agree with the economist, Dr. Paul Craig Roberts, that the PIIGS + France should look Eastwards. Even if the motive is financial expediency, just do it. If they can get Germany to join them then that is fine.

Let the banks (and not the Church) take the hit and move on.

Anonymous said...

No, Patricius, the Catholic Church was mainly good in Ireland up until the overtaking of the seminaries and Catholic faculties from the 1960s, when the modernist revolutionaries came to power in the Church. I was born and have lived all my life in Ireland, as an improving sinner but always adhering to the truth of the Faith and the Natural Moral Law. I'm 46 and all my life I've had to defend the Faith, and more so fundamental objective morality against attack. I've been involved in fightng against abortion in one way or another since 1981/2. We've always been on the back foot in fighting evil because we did not have the leadership or backing of the bishops and priests (majority reneged on duty) except a tiny minority over those decades. I have lost my health and income, and much more besides directly and indirectly due to this ongoing fight (led by powers and principalities). The bishops and priests long corrupted by the composite heresy of modernism and hidden apostasy abandoned the Faith, and their flocks decades ago. The mostly sodomitical sex abuse was a rotten fruit of same, and the homoheresy and just plain heresy meant they had gone with the world, the flesh and the devil a long time ago. The apostasy of the Catholic population was in main a result of the apostasy of the clergy in powerful positions, that destroyed the clergy, refusing candidates that espoused the Faith, and taking and promoting those who supported heresy and various intrinsic evils. The remnant in Ireland have been mainly without holy and zealous bishops and priests for decades. The few who remain loyal to the doctrine of the Faith are mostly outside of, marginalised from "official" Church who control chanceries, parishes, schools, hospitals, etc., and which in the vast majority are opposed to the Catholic Faith and Natural moral law. Excuse my incoherence - I am exhausted. Please pray for Ireland, overrun by Satan and demons, colluded with by many bishops and priests (and not so discreetly anymore). Satan no longer needs to hide. Blessed Michael, the Archangel, defend us in battle . . .

Anonymous said...

Denis said...

Look at those celebrating this event. Overwhelmingly attention seeking individuals produced by the culture of "me"
This has far more to do with forty plus years of hedonism and the elevation of self than any real thought about right or wrong.

Physiocrat said...

On present trends liberal Europe is heading for Sharia Law. I don't think it includes gay marriage.

Edward P. Walton said...

The Irish, as good Catholics, did what the pope told them.

Pope Francis said, Who am I to judge.

Long-Skirts said...

Sadie Vacantist said...

"The poet on here says "go West". In reality, it is in the East where the natural law is being preserved most effectively."

But with the first famine they came west and today the famine is so much worse but there are bastions of the Faith where young men can be fed the Truth....indeed Christ never leaves us orphans.


Jewel of the west
On eastern coast
Atlantic aurora
Our Mother's boast

The proud are scattered
In conceits of their heart
Blind to Melchisedech's
Priests thou art

Jewel of the west
On eastern coast
Atlantic aurora
Our Mother's boast

A light to the Revelation
Of faithful Gentiles
Angels sing canticles
Simeon smiles

Jewel of the west
On eastern coast
Atlantic aurora
Our Mother's boast

Root of Jesse
Gate of morn
Unworldly womb
The skulkers scorn

Jewel of the west
On eastern coast
Atlantic aurora
Our Mother's boast

And we your daughters
Comely and fair
A terrible army
Birthing His heir

Jewel of the west
On eastern coast
Atlantic aurora
Our Mother's boast

For our sons' inheritance
Roman men toil
A Cathedral of cassocks--
Catholic priesthood all Royal!

Unknown said...

Although deeply saddened by the outcome of the referendum, I feel a perspective is necessary. We know that the State can do no more than give a certificate, along with associated rights and recognition in law. It cannot create a marriage. Therefore, although some will troop through the Registry Office and emerge like Chamberlain, waving in the air the note of their new found liberation, it will mean precisely nothing in the great scheme of things. Further, we are talking about a small percent of a small percent. Kinsey greatly overstated the statistics when he set it at 10%. Let's say, perhaps 3% is more realistic. How many of those will avail themselves of same sex marriage? I doubt if anything more than 20%. So 20% of 3%. This is a very insignificant number. A lifetime partner and a settled life simply is not part of the landscape of homosexuality (particularly in relation to male homosexuals). It is a promiscuous and narcissistic state and that is unlikely to change.

Pelerin said...

Denis mentions 'the culture of 'me''.How often does one read of someone doing something 'because they want to' irrespective of whether it is morally right or not. It is always 'me, me, me.'

An example of this is the horrifying story of a woman aged 65 who has just given birth to quads through IVF. She is quoted as saying 'I think one needs to decide for oneself and not listen too much to the opinions of others..... I am doing what I think is right.'

The woman already has 13 - yes thirteen - children by five different fathers and 7 grandchildren. She says she became pregnant because her daughter wanted a younger sibling. So her daughter has got want she wanted - but at what cost? Could the mother have not gently said that as a grandmother she was now too old to bear children? Would she have given in to the child's request if she had asked for an elephant as a pet?

Unknown said...

ocannady said:

Enjoyed reading your comments, most were spot on. In the states I enjoy Father Ray's blog. St. Michael pray for us.

The Lord’s descent into the underworld

At Matins/the Office of Readings on Holy Saturday the Church gives us this 'ancient homily', I find it incredibly moving, it is abou...