Well, looks like finally an Irish Government has taken a realistic stand. As much as I dont agree with FG as a party, I need to say fair play to the Taoiseach.
I have not followed events closely in Ireland recently, but the withdrawl of the Papal Nuncio from Ireland seems to be a logical result to the revalations of past years.
In relation to the states relationship to the church, if there is one particular part of the civil service who are almost out of government control it is the DFA, their questionable indirect funding of the the Lisbon II yes vote being a good example.
The DFA has a tendency to do as it wants, rather than reflect the stance of the elected Government.
The last Taoiseach that reined them in properly was CJH in his dealing with Sean Donlon, in essence firing the fucker from his Washington post.
Mr.Donlon is now of course assisting John Bruton in saying in the eircom licence fiasco that he saw no evidence of any wrongdoing on the part of Micahel Lowry; or indeed on the part of anyone else.
In a time of austerity measures and cutbacks, it is - in my opinion - time to close down the Irish Embassy to the Vatican, and move its functions 10 miles down the road to the Irish Embassy to Italy, if the Irish Embassy in Madrid can cover Morocco - then surely Rome can cover the city state.
However, will the DFA allow the loss of such a plum position for itself?
I am not one for jumping on the band wagon, in recent years it has become popular for some sections of the media to tirade against the church as a whole when there are a great many priests and nuns who have always done and continue to do great work.
My problem has always been, and remains with, the hierarchy and their role in covering up crimes- particularly what one could refer to as the Roman college group, those bishops who are very close to the power base in Rome.
This is best demonstrated in the distinct difference between the way Archbishop Diarmuid Martin has dealt with the situation in comparison with the high flying Roman gang.
In their response to the Taoiseachs criticism the Vatican has, among other things said the “main reason” for the recall was so the nuncio could “consult” with those people at the Vatican involved in preparation of the formal response to the Cloyne report, requested by the Government.
e.g. get the story straight.
Msgr Gianfranco Girotti, number two at the apostolic penitentiary, when he told Il Foglio newspaper the Holy See would never accept Irish legislation that might attempt to break the seal of confession. “Ireland can pass all the laws it likes but it should understand that the church will never accept the obligation on a confessor to report to civil authorities . . .”
The investigations to the best of my knowledge do not cover the confessional seal, they deal with the cover-ups by people like Cardinal Sean Brady.
Taking affidavits and then forcing people to sign an oath of secrecy is not part of the confessional sacrament, nor is it legally binding.
I feel is quite clear that in doing this to protect the institution of the church, he helped cover up a crime and pervert the course of justice.
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