Category: Opinion

Leave law making with those elected

Lord Jonathan Sumption is a well-respected British judge and historian, who has served as a Justice of the Supreme Court. But what he now says about the increasing power of lawyers in the interpretation of the law is deeply significant. I have been much impressed, this year, by his short book Trials of the State:…

British govt must act to leave abortion to 
the political representatives of the North

The View There has not been much publicity for the current government consultation on abortion in Northern Ireland. It closes at 11.45pm on December 16. Responses to the consultation should inform the new proposals for the provision of abortion in the North. Readers will know that law was passed in Westminster last July requiring the…

This post is only available to members.

Back to the era of chaperones

There is a scene in iconic film The Quiet Man when John Wayne and Maureen O’Hara go on a date. This being 1950s Ireland (in the imagination of the movie’s director, John Ford), they must take a chaperone along with them in the shape of Barry Fitzgerald to ensure all the proprieties are observed and…

This post is only available to members.

Ireland remains at war with its past

Fr Andrew McMahon The opportunity to honour Gay Byrne’s impressive life’s work was exploited to impose a revisionist narrative of 20th Century Ireland, writes Fr Andrew McMahon In a column in the Sunday Press almost 40 years ago author and critic Desmond Fennell spoke of “the Manichaean notion of the Dublin liberals that our society…

Do Catholics worship statues?

Questions of Faith It’s commonly asserted – namely from those in the Protestant tradition – that Catholics commit the sin of idolatry by worshipping statues. It’s an intriguing claim, namely because the Bible couldn’t be more explicit about the worship of graven images. “You shall not make for yourself a graven image or any likeness…

Pope vents frustration over lack of political will to implement Laudato Si’

Letter from Rome A  little more than four years after Pope Francis published one of his most provocative documents, not to mention perhaps his most political, in the form of his eco-encyclical Laudato Si’, the Pontiff appears increasingly disappointed in the way the environmental manifesto been received. In two separate messages published this week, Francis appeared…

Justice and charity – revisited

We’re all familiar, I suspect, with the difference between justice and charity. Charity is giving away some of your time, energy, resources, and person so as to help to others in need. And that’s an admirable virtue, the sign of a good heart. Justice, on the other hand, is less about directly giving something away…