Dear Editor, Every Thursday morning without fail your fine newspaper arrives through my letterbox. You and your staff and team of writers deserve huge credit for keeping the paper going with such exceptional quality during what most be one of the most challenging period that any of us will ever experience.
The Irish Catholic is the perfect antidote to our jaded and cynical world. It offers the ideal mix of positivity and challenge. Definitely a must-read for anyone who is serious about understanding our world through the lens of Faith.
Full credit to you all, it’s time to take a well-deserved bow. I am sure I speak for many.
Serious concern over children’s portfolio
Dear Editor, Given Roderic O’Gorman’s position on the extreme end of the LGBT spectrum and his association with Peter Tatchell, it defies belief that he has been given the Minister for Children portfolio.
In view of the sensitivities involved, it defies belief that Mr O’Gorman has been appointed Minister for Children. It makes the Barry Cowan controversy seem trivial by comparison. Just when one thought that ‘modern/liberal’ Ireland could not get any loonier! Mr O’Gorman’s and the Green Party’s links with Peter Tatchell are a cause of serious concern to many people.
Name-calling people with these legitimate concerns as ‘homophobic’, ‘right-wing’, etc. is an unacceptable diversionary tactic. Serious questions still hang over the suitability of Mr O’Gorman for this sensitive portfolio.
Disastrous consequences of today’s permissive culture
Dear Editor, The number 6,666 will remain indelibly etched on the Irish mind as the portent of a calamitous chapter in the history of Ireland. The termination of that number of human lives, at the defenceless commencement of their journeys to life, was wilfully executed by medical personnel whose vocation is intrinsically committed to the protection and preservation of humans’ health and well-being.
We are being misled to accept that there were 6,666 exceptional circumstances which justified this mass death-dealing consequence for these holy innocents of our modernistic times.
In tandem new norms of casual sexual behaviour for our youth, in which this anti-life mentality is sourced, are being promoted and extolled ad nauseam as being progressive and liberating.
There has been an avalanche of sex-induced crimes as the ‘condom culture’, espousing copulation shorn of its primary life-endowing role, takes its toll on adolescent behaviour particularly. Mahatma Gandhi witnessed what now is becoming prevalent in Irish society. “I know,” he wrote, “what havoc secret vice has played among schoolboys and schoolgirls.
“The introduction of contraceptives under the name of science and the imprimatur of known leaders of society has intensified the complication and made the task of reformers who work for purity of social life well-nigh impossible.”
Colm Ó Tórna,
Artane, Dublin 5.
Courage needed to re-open churches
Dear Editor, In his beautiful address to the world in March, Pope Francis repeatedly used the words of Jesus in the Bible to the disciples when he asked them “how is it that you have such little Faith?”
It’s a question I keep thinking about when I hear that some parishes have still not re-opened for public Masses.
If the goal is 100% safety then it’s time to shut those churches for good as this can never be.
Strabane, Co. Tyrone.
Church leaders need the hunger to reach out
Dear Editor, I agree with your assertion that now could be the perfect time for our Church to become re energised and move from maintenance to mission across the country, to preach the Good News with an increasing role played by the laity [IC 09/07/20]
Writing this on the feast day of St Benedict, I am reminded of how he went off into solitude to help clarify and refocus his great Christian theological mind.
I can’t but help draw parallels to the potential ‘Benedictine opportunity’ presented to our Church by the Covid-19 lockdown. The green shoots of these past few months of online Masses and digital interaction should not be allowed to die away. Many priests reported online Masses and rosaries being watched by vastly more people than would usually attend in person. This should be proof that if we are willing to search for ‘the lost coins’, they can and in many cases want to be found.
Pope Francis famously called for a movement away from the sacristy into the community where the Good News is needed the most. We tend to think of parishes as places where Catholics go to Mass, where children get basic instruction to prepare them for sacraments and where a handful of people come to classes or attend prayer groups. All of these are hugely important. But how many parishes have the mindset to take all these people who come to Mass and ‘send them’ on mission?
We have an extraordinary infrastructure on the ground in our network of parishes from which to launch a campaign of evangelisation.
All it would take is a clear, purposeful and energetic approach from top down to train small teams of laity to give up a few hours a week of their time. To be ‘salt to the earth and a light to the world’, modelled on the approach of the early Christians, who stood out from the surrounding society due to their radical humility and commitment to the Faith, hope and love of the Gospel message.
Dundalk, Co. Louth.
Church must be watchful of new law
Dear Editor, It is certainly welcome that the authorities have given assurances that the new legislation permitting same-sex religious marriages in Northern Ireland will not force Churches to comply. But, for how long? In the current culture of legal positivism it is hard to take such assurances at face value. Could we be in a situation in a couple of years where a same-sex couple could be in the courts artuing that the Catholic Church has a legal obligation to perform a wedding ceremony for them?
Some will think that this is scare-mongering, but we have seen in recent years the culture move increasingly from ‘live and let live’ to ‘bake the cake, bigot’.
Church leaders should be very careful and monitor the situation very well so that religious freedom does not become the latest victim of tolerance.
Belfast, Co. Antrim.