Dear Editor, The title of Fr Sean Smith’s item in your 26/08/2021 issue was ‘We still speak about keeping the Faith as if it were something, instead of a relationship with someone’.
David Quinn’s article in your 14/10/2021 issue is titled ‘The Church has underestimated the reality of evil’ and discusses the report on child abuse in the Catholic Church in France. There are several references to “evil”, which comes across as an abstract phenomenon (‘something’). If we believe in a living, personal God and seek to have a relationship with him, then isn’t our struggle more to do with ‘God versus the Devil’ rather than ‘good versus evil?’
(I expect the Devil probably prefers the latter: “The greatest trick the Devil ever pulled was convincing the world that he didn’t exist.”)
“Our Father, who art in heaven…….deliver us from the Evil One”. Matthew 6: 9-13
Randalstown, Co. Antrim
Avenues leading towards the occult
Dear Editor, The word ‘Halloween’ means the eve of the feast of All Saints. Yet on shop windows and even on school windows we see images of ghosts, skeletons, witches, demons etc., at this time of year, indeed of all sorts of ugly things that remind one of the occult and of Satan. But many Catholic parents and the boards of Catholic schools seem to have no problem with this. Instead, they see it, naively, as good fun even though such things are what might be called ‘avenues’ leading towards the occult; and this at a time when Satan-worship, black masses and seances are on the increase all over the world.
If Halloween is to get back its true meaning why not make this a time when parents encourage young people to dress up as their favourite saints, and schools, then, give prizes for the best efforts. Furthermore, instead of ‘trick-or-treating’, the young could also go around to their neighbours offering to pray to those saints for their intentions. It would certainly gain help from the saints and it might even gain a few chocolates also for the young from grateful neighbours! Thus, we might see a return again of something of the Christian to this season.
Fr Richard O’Connor
Castleisland, Co. Kerry and Rome
Govt contraception campaign beggars belief
Dear Editor, The recent Budget 2022 announcement directing that free contraceptives will be made available next year to young women aged 17-25 with €10 million a year allocated for that purpose is cause to pause. When the iconic ‘contraception train’ movement happened in 1971, contraception was only decriminalised in 1980 and approved for sale in 1985. Now 36 years later, contraception will be provided free of charge to young women aged 17-25 many of whom are unmarried mothers.
Women in this age group are likely to be in part-time employment, jobless, in full-time education and not financially independent. Yet the cost of the new abortion regime amounts to €20 million for 2019 to 2020 which equates to €10 million per annum. It can be adduced the Government is planning to spend €20 million a year on the prevention of births, by way of abortion or contraception. There is no evidence available to suggest free contraception might impact abortion numbers. It beggars belief the Government promotes a reduction in the birth rate further. A GP managing a pregnancy is paid €250 which contrasts with a GP prescribing abortion pills who is paid €450 even though the pregnancy requires far more GP visits. And pre-abortion counselling receives no funding whatsoever. Neither is Gianna Care and Every Life Counts, which ably assists women experiencing an unexpected pregnancy, or need help following an abortion given any State funding. Should both male and female be educated about contraception is a moot question.
Kilnamanagh, Dublin 24
Future generations will be ‘horrified’ by abortion
Dear Editor, I would like to thank Fr Martin Delaney for his excellent article on what happens to the remains of babies killed in abortions. He asked a most interesting question: What examples of group think are existing and thriving today that in 50 years’ time we will be horrified by?
As slavery is now recognised as the horror it was, so will abortion to future generations. Yes, as Fr Delaney said, many things occurred in the past that should not have happened, but it is impossible to imagine anything more horrific than the deliberate killing of innocent, vulnerable babies in the womb, 13,243 disposed of since abortion was legalised here, not counting those killed during this year. No other right can apply without the right to life and when this is denied to unborn babies, it is no surprise that efforts are now being made to shorten or end the lives of older people who are seen as disposable. Each individual life is of importance and must be protected and cherished.
We are constantly hearing claims of how babies who died in Tuam were treated, seemingly without proper investigation.
This is just one example of the group think in the media and which was so evident in the abortion campaign. We simply had no proper debate and the media had full rein in its promotion of abortion, ably aided by most politicians. Opposing views were silenced and indeed, still are. We simply cannot be silent on the issue of abortion which is happening daily in our country. Now, if any other such deliberate killings were taking place, would there not be an outcry? It is time that we stood up and are counted in speaking up for the voiceless babies.
Ardeskin, Donegal Town
No justification for Taliban comparison
Dear Editor, Fr Roy Donovan claims that the Catholic Church is like the Taliban because it does not allow the ordination of women to the priesthood or the permanent diaconate. This is clearly a clever ploy to get the mainstream media’s attention to listen to the self-declared ‘liberal’ Association of Catholic Priests. But whatever frustrations Fr Roy has at the slow pace of change within the Church, there really is no justification for his actions, that undermine our bishops, fellow priests, deacons and most importantly the many wonderful male and female volunteers within our parishes.
Templeogue, Dublin 16