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Vatican recalls nuncio to Ireland

By on Monday, 25 July 2011

Archbishop Giuseppe Leanza leaves the Department of Foreign Affairs in Dublin (Julien Behal/PA Wire)

Archbishop Giuseppe Leanza leaves the Department of Foreign Affairs in Dublin (Julien Behal/PA Wire)

In an exceptional move, the Vatican has recalled its nuncio to Ireland so that he could participate in meetings aimed at drafting a formal response to an Irish government report on clerical sex abuse.

The Vatican said that following the publication of the Cloyne Report “and, particularly, after the reactions that followed, the secretary of state has recalled the apostolic nuncio in Ireland, Archbishop Giuseppe Leanza, for consultations”.

Passionist Fr Ciro Benedettini, vice director of the Vatican press office, said recalling the nuncio “denotes the seriousness of the situation, the desire of the Holy See to face it with objectivity and determination, as well as a certain note of surprise and disappointment over some excessive reactions” to the report and its accusations against the Vatican.

The Cloyne Report, which examined how the Diocese of Cloyne handled accusations of clerical sexual abuse, said the bishop paid “little or no attention” to child safeguarding as recently as 2008 and that he falsely told the government his diocese was reporting all allegations of abuse to the civil authorities.

The report also accused the Vatican of being “entirely unhelpful” to Irish bishops who wanted to implement stronger norms for dealing with accusations and protecting children.

Addressing parliament last week, Irish Prime Minister Enda Kenny said the Cloyne Report “exposes an attempt by the Holy See to frustrate an inquiry in a sovereign, democratic republic as little as three years ago”.

“And in doing so, the Cloyne Report excavates the dysfunction, disconnection, elitism and the narcissism that dominate the culture of the Vatican to this day,” the prime minister said.

After the prime minister spoke, Jesuit Fr Federico Lombardi, Vatican spokesman, issued a statement calling for greater objectivity in discussing “topics so dramatic” because the first concern of all should be “the safeguarding of children and of young people and the renewal of a climate of trust and collaboration” between Church and state.

In announcing the recall of the nuncio, Fr Benedettini said the Vatican Secretariat of State wanted to ensure its response to the Cloyne Report was serious and complete, and to do that it was necessary that “the person on the scene”, Archbishop Leanza, took part in drafting discussions along with officials from the congregations for the doctrine of the faith, religious, clergy and bishops.

He said the Vatican expected to forward its formal response to the Irish government before the end of August.

In a statement Irish foreign minister Eamon Gilmore said: “The decision to recall the papal nuncio to the Vatican for consultations is a matter for the Holy See. The government is awaiting the response of the Holy See to the recent report into the Catholic Diocese of Cloyne and it is to be expected that the Vatican would wish to consult in depth with the nuncio on its response.”

A day earlier, Mr Kenny told a crowd during a visit to County Donegal he had received “thousands of messages from around the world” supporting his comments.

“The numbers of members of the clergy who have been in touch in the last few days, to say it is about time somebody spoke out about these matters in a situation like you are, has astounded me,” Mr Kenny added.

“I haven’t made any other comments except to say that we await the response from the Vatican,” he said.

Contributing to this story was Michael Kelly in Dublin.

  • EastofEngland

    This isn’t only true in Ireland.  I live in the East of England. Here, one of the local priests was convicted of the criminal offence of trying to abduct two teenage boys whom he did not know, just over ten years ago. The priest received probation on the condition of psychiatric treatment. Apparently, he is safe to be a parish priest ‘because attempted abduction is not a sexual offence and so he is not on the sex offenders register’ and because ‘he has responded well to psychiatric treatment’. You could not make it up. There are other disgraceful episodes too, still happening right now, such as the use of Church funds to house paedophile priests/former priests when they leave prison or paying for private medical treatment of the clergy.

    Until the Church adopts the Orthodox approach of virtually requiring priests to be married this problem will continue. If a priest wants to be celibate, the Orthodox approach is that is should become either a monk or a bishop. There is no reason why priests cannot be married: it happened for the first one thousand years of the Church, and married men, formerly Anglican, can be clergy too. There is a significant pool of decent, married men who are ready to answer Christ’s call.

    The truth is that, whilst homosexuality was a social taboo, the Church could recruit homosexual clergy and offer them safe, albeit profoundly hypocritical, refuge. Now, whether the Church likes it or not, there is no need for decent homosexuals to join the Church, so the recruitment pool is reduced to psychiatric patients and sexual deviants. It is no surprise that sexual abuse is covered up when homosexuality is so common amongst the priesthood which is itself open to blackmail about the homosexuality within its ranks. I know one well-known and senior priest who frequents an all-male establishment where it is pitch black and it is a requirement to leave all one’s clothes in a bin liner on entry to the ‘club’. How is a figure like this, who was once private secretary to Archbishop, going to act when asked to act against a.n.other priest?

    However obvious it is that the Church needs to recruit married clergy, the geriatric, camp core of the Church hierarchy is terrified to do so, in case they are exposed for their own homosexual hypocrisy. However, one wonders how long the Church will be able to ignore its own flock, the reality on the ground and common sense. Enda Kenny spoke for many.

  • wayneg87

    The vatican will do nothing but issue statememts that dont say anything. The vatican is rich beyond belief and can buy power anywhere. The flock is there to be fleeced by these idolater priests. Thats the mission of the catholic church. To gorge its self on the flock. Its second mission is to keep men from salvation, by putting Mary and supposed saints in the way, and to keep men on their knees befor graven images. 

  • Harper

    Another Vatican-baiter from the 16th-17th Centuries. Not much of the Calvinist educational ethic, though – mispellings: “idolater”, “befor”, lower-case for “vatican”, and no apostrophe in “dont” or possessive suffix in “Thats”. Nil points for these as well as the bigoted content.

  • jacu

    I think, the irish goverment should take care of the steps it will take.
    Irland is a little island, almost bankrupt: no one wants a poor friend…
    There are more catholics (and growing) in tobo, benin and ghana than in old irland, not to speak of ukraine or the democratic republic of congo (35 millions catholics).
    Irland is insignificant in the modern history, in modern europe and in the modern history church: they should don´t think that we are going to miss them!
    Bye bye Irland, you can hold your potatoes, your alcohol dependency and the rain

  • Harper

    Most paedophile abuse takes place within families, at the hands of married men, and occasionally women. It has nothing whatsoever to do with celibacy. A married clergy did not prevent Anglican Archbishop Peter Hollingworth of Brisbane rocking Australia with its greatest paedophile scandal in 2003, for having hidden paedophile molestation in his diocese. He was forced by this scandal to resign as Governor-General. Priests are married in Eastern Catholic rites fully in communion with Rome. Your historical understanding of celibacy in the Latin West for the first millenium is deeply flawed.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_2CIYNGRXZ2PQFSDKNEHVB3GDQY Shiste Mc

    Ireland is not the only country which targeted the Church a scapegoat under extreme financial pressure of a likely second recession.  Having nowhere else to turn to, I’m sure the Church is a familiar victim of political scandals among the same sex unions and etc.  And to draw subjective terms in high level diplomatic relations is starvation of standards in poverty not only of the soul but also of the land… 
    I pray for objectivity in response..  

  • T Martin6

    Dear Editor,
    The suggestion by the Vatican that there is some degree of over-reaction in Enda Kelly’s remarks shows, unfortunately, that the Vatican still does not ‘get it’. I say this as someone who was at a Jesuit boarding school for eight years and would in principle like to retain some respect for the Church, despite being wholly ‘lapsed’. Yours, Tim Martin

  • Thinkmaw

    Do you think that in Ireland the percentage of priests who sexually
    abuse children is greater or less than the percentage of other adults who
    sexually abuse children?

  • EastofEngland

    The problem is not that many priests are homosexual per se, it is that they are ‘in the closet’. This hypocrisy leads not only to inaction due to their ‘own little secrets’ but also greatly reduces the pool of available priests now that homosexuality is tolerated by society as a whole. The harsh reality is that it is likely that neither Cardinal Hume nor Newman would join the Church if young men today.

    You can argue with me about my understanding of celibacy in the Latin West all you like, but to be taken seriously you first need to learn how to spell the word ‘millenium’ (sic). Mark 1:30 tells us, incidentally, that St Peter was married.

    Like all apologists, you throw the stones without addressing the issues under discussion. You say nothing about the mentally-ill, attempted child abductor serving as a parish priest. You say nothing about the clothes in a bin liner sex-club priest. You say nothing about the use of Church funds for convicted criminals.  You say nothing about the use of Church funds for private medical treatment.  If you have nothing good to say, say nothing.

  • wayneg87

    Who cares about spelling. Or a lousy apostrophe. You wont catch me bowing befor idols made by hands. Or staring at gods golden cage. You wont find me calling some guy in a costume..Holy Father. Instead of sweating my apostrophe you should look at where you trust your salvation. Do you trust it at the foot of a graven image? Or to some costume holy man. I trust mine to the invisible god.

  • wayneg87

    Please restate the question. But in partial answer, Ireland had a big percent of molester priests. Higher than most british isle countries. But south america has the biggest percent of molester priest because of the complete lack of oversite or policing of priests in backward south american out of the way villages. The priests down there are berserk. Its a field day. Tons of orphans at the mercies of these nuns and catholic priests

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_CIC3RWXRB36OC3KNXZMNBH3DIE Gerry

    Well,  you don’t care very much about spelling or grammar but it seems that your impoverishment in these areas matches your poor understanding of what the Catholic Church teaches regarding the use of images, Catholics have never worshiped idols or images but use them as reminders of Our Savior Jesus, His Blessed mother Mary or the saints.  It is analogous to keeping a photograph in your wallet of a loved one who is far away or is deceased. Your wild, unsubstantiated accusations regarding the activities of priests and nuns in South America are typical of someone who has been brainwashed in some fundamentalist, so called bible-believing cult.  The vast majority of priests and nuns of South America administer heroically to their parishioners in the face of great dangers.  Some have paid with their lives standing up against the armed thugs of corrupt landowners and governments.

  • Thinkmaw

    No further post so far from the contributor who, while criticising the language of others misspelt “mispellings”, and I have to say I am glad. This issue is, for goodness sake, far too important, ongoing and tragic to be distracted by disparagement of the typing or literacy skills of those with views which are entitled to a civilised airing, whether we agree with them or not . My own online efforts are frequently clumsy enough. I will be heard nonetheless. How long has it taken it take for the abused children to be heard? 

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_4MIMJNUOASUARHDSWL72H6WQHE Niall

    No – the Vatican’s response is correct, in my opinion. Mr Kenny’s speech had several errors, including a grave mis-quotation of Pope Benedict with regard to canon law and civil law. Pointing out the errors of some within the Church is fine – that is what the Cloyne report did – but Mr Kenny simply went too far. Misquoting and misrepresenting the facts to get a bit of extra mileage is simply unacceptable, especially for the leader of the country. To say that the Vatican does not “get it” is ridiculous – and calling for objectivity after Mr Kenny’s inflammatory remarks is a perfectly valid request, and not indicitave of one who doesn’t “get it”. The fact is- as many in the media are now acknowledging – that few are as in tune with the gravity of the problem as Pope Benedict, and this has been the case for many years. Let us not forget that the Cloyne Report itself acknowledges that the Church’s guidelines for dealing with abuse are far more robust than those of the State. Mr Kenny, of course, gave the impression that the Church is stuck in the 1990′s with regard to its response to abuse; the facts – and specifically the Cloyne Report – beg to differ.

  • Brad

    “Some guy” is the successor to St. Peter.  You dismiss his successors, and thus him, with breathtaking cavalierness.  May God bless you.

  • JonnyB

    Rubbish, he is just a man, like all of us. Even Jesus, in his time on Earth was ‘just a man’.
    He is ‘some guy’ elected, politically, by ‘some other guys’.
    If you believe he has any continuous devine inheritance, how do you reconcile the many predecessors who have shown themselves to be, frankly, unholy & unChristian?
    Your only reverence should be to God and to idolise anyone/anything else is blasphemous.

  • JonnyB

    *divine… curse the inability to edit comments on here!

  • Wayneg87

    Gerry, yes, there are a few good ones(priests). No cult has schooled me on world affairs. I get my info from news or eye witness travelers, or police reports. But to say every catholic that has ever been born only venerated statues. Unsophisticated tribal people converted to catholicism have worshiped the objects. Anyway, the word venerate is just splitting hairs.
    Oh, we dont worship Mary, we just venerate her……Tell it to god. I dont want to hear it. Look, im not interested in exposing false practices of false religions(all religions are false). I want people to get a relationship, personal , with Christ. I want people to see the uselessness  of religions. Maybe they will then see the need to call on the Lord. Leave the costume holymen and the graven images to the lost

  • Wayneg87

    Brad, is this succession unbroken? One godly successor to the next godly successor? All the way to Bennedict? Thanks for your answer in advance

  • Jacob Suggs

    “Until the Church adopts the Orthodox approach of virtually requiring priests to be married this problem will continue.”

    Yeah, no. To be honest, after getting this far, I couldn’t make myself continue. How many times must a scientific study tell you there is no correlation between marital status and abuse for you to believe it? Stop using the abuse of young people to try to push your own agenda.

  • Rita

    It is my understanding that the Church stands on celibacy for all priests,  regardlessd of their proclivity for same sex attraction or opposite sex attraction.   This means that their devotion to vocation must overide their desires no matter what they are.   Gay priests are not going to marry women.  Heterosexual priests who are rightly devoted to their vocation will not be interested in marriage and family given the role of priests for centuries.   Diluting piety, the priestly Sacrament, the great sacrifice is no answer that encourages holiness.  The problem is the laxity of the seminaries who were overwhelmed with the gay agenda and turned to modern psychology to “treat” these infiltrators, but which has proven to be an utter failure with over time moving the agenda driven into higher and higher office.

  • EastofEngland

    As already said, the problem is not that many priests are homosexual per se, it is that
    they are ‘in the closet’. This hypocrisy leads not only to inaction due
    to their ‘own little secrets’ but also greatly reduces the pool of
    available priests now that homosexuality is tolerated by society as a
    whole. The harsh reality is that it is likely that neither Cardinal Hume
    nor Newman would join the Church if young men today. At least three times as many priests are dying each year as are ordained in Ireland and in some years the multiple has been far higher.

    Even if we leave aside the fact that hypocritical homosexuality obviously leaves the potential for blackmail and inaction over the sexual behaviour of others, the Church is, quite literally, dying off, as homosexual young men decide that they would rather frequent Old Compton Street rather than the Vatican City. The pool of parish priests has declined at such a rate that my Diocese feels it is can justify having a priest with serious psychiatric history and a criminal conviction for attempted child abduction of two boys as a parish priest. There is no reason why priests should not be married. Mark 1:30 tells us that St Peter was married.

  • EastofEngland

    In some ways I do not disagree with you but the Church does have to face reality. The number of priests dying is at least three times the number being ordained. The reason why the seminaries ‘were overwhelmed with the gay agenda’ is that homosexual men were the only ones willing to enter the priesthood, though most interpreted celibacy for priests as meaning ‘not having sex with women’ rather than ‘not having sex’. Is that more or less dilutive of piety than married priests? Now, with wider society’s taboo on homosexuality gone, so have most of the decent potential homosexual recruits and we are left with the mentally ill and the sexually deviant. Whatever the current position of the Church, I can see, short of a miracle, no solution other than the recruitment of married priests.

  • Harper

    The reference to “mispelling” was deliberate, which in the context of the post ought to have been obvious even to the slow-witted. You are correct, however, when you state that your efforts are frequently clumsy enough. Defending some half-baked, semi-literate evangelical attack on the Pope and misrepresentations of Catholic doctrines unrelated to the issue of child abuse is the latest example of this.

  • Harper

    You manifestly do not care about spelling, or about dragging into the discussion gross misrepresentations of Catholic doctrines wholly unrelated to the issue of child abuse. You yourself should stick perhaps to “craven” images.

  • Harper

    My occasionally superfast touch typing has nothing to do with my being taken seriously, but your repetition of the old canard about John Henry Newman being homosexual, closet or otherwise, certainly raises questions about your credibility. Do you know something about the late Cardinal Hume that we don’t know? I am myself no great admirer of the late cardinal (during whose watch the church declined), but I would be very reluctant to write in this way about his character without some concrete evidence.

  • Brian Ingram

    The number of priests dying is at least three times the number being ordained!!!!!!!!
    The number of priests stood at 409,166, an increase of 1,142 from the
    end of 2007. Since the year 2000, the Vatican said, the number of
    priests has increased by nearly 4,000, or about 1 percent.
    Since
    1978 there has been an Increase in the number of
    seminarians. According to data
    published in L’Osservatore Romano
    and the Vatican’s statistical
    yearbook (the Secretariat of State’s
    Annuarium Statisticum Ecclesiae),
    there were 63,882 diocesan and
    religious major seminarians when
    John Paul II began his pontificate
    in 1978; by the end of 2005, that
    number had grown to 114,439—a
    remarkable increase of 79.1 percent. Again at the global level the number of candidates for the priesthood rose from 115,919 in 2007 to 117,024 in 2008

    Most of the
    growth in the number of candidates
    for the priesthood took place in
    Africa, where seminarians more than
    quadrupled from 5,636 to 23,580, and
    in Asia, where the number nearly
    tripled from 11,536 to 30,066. The
    Americas, too, saw a growth in the
    number of seminarians, from 22,011
    to 36,891, as did Australia and
    Oceania, whose numbers rose slightly
    from 784 to 944. The number of
    European seminarians, on the other
    hand, declined from 23,915 to
    22,958. 

  • salvemaria

    To Mr East of England,

    If I wanted to insult the ‘lobby against celibacy’ I would say your comments typify them.  Wouldn’t
    you say they seem rather narrow minded or a little irrational.

    Surely it is prodding sleeping tigers to say that the only people who don’t have relations with the opposite sex are homosexuals, psychiatric patients and sexual deviants.

    If you recall, Our Lord was a celibate; St Joseph, his foster-father was a celibate and Mary the Mother of God and our Mother was a celibate.

    Also, St Paul was celibate for he said: “For I would that all men were even as myself: but every one hath his proper gift from God; one after this manner, and another after that. But I say to the unmarried, and to the widows: It is good for them if they so continue, even as I.” (I Cor, VII,7-8).

    England’s patron saint St Edward the Confessor was celibate as was his wife, the virtuous Editha.  So was Sir Isaac Newton and George Frederic Handel. Would India have wished that Mother Theresa not be celibate? Or Ghandi?

    In Domina

  • Anonymous

    The Roman Catholic Church is not a democracy.

    It is led by Christ’s vicar on earth in the manner of a flock being led by its shepherd.  No matter how much bleating takes place, the shepherd takes his cue in matters of faith and morals from his own Master who, being divine, cannot err.

    Mr Kenny may well have received “thousands of messages from around the world” supporting his comments, but the Pope knows what is expected of him and if he applies himself assiduously to his responsibilities, he will see that it is done.

    The shilly-shallying we have today was hardly ever to be seen in the days before the Liberals got into the driving seat subsequent to the Second Vatican Council, and the sooner the old values return, the sooner matters will improve.

    As for East of England and the reasons for there being homosexuals in the ranks of the clergy,  Michael Rose (author of “Goodbye, good men”) gave a very well-documented account of how certain Seminary Directors ensured that priests were encouraged to be gay and of how “straight” young men were given poor grades in order to deter them from pursuing their vocations.  Hopefully, that abuse of authority has now been stamped out.

    That is why there was a temporary blip in the (very small) percentage of gay priests.

  • EastofEngland

    I didn’t say any of that, did I? I said that priestly hypocrisy leads to cover ups and that the traditional homosexual recruitment pool in the UK and Ireland has dried up to the point were the Church is forced to have parish priests with criminal convictions for attempted child abduction and serious psychiatric problems. I would rather have a homosexual priest than a child abducting psychiatric patient in my parish.

    We are talking about the priesthood, not Jesus, Joseph and Mary. St Peter was certainly married, as the Bible makes clear. The Bible also makes it clear that Mary and Joseph were married and Jesus had brethren so the claim of celibacy is frankly ridiculous. We could argue about whether historical figures like Isaac Newton and Handel were celibate or rather homosexuals living in times when homosexuality was a crime but that isn’t what this is about and is irrelevant. It is fine to be celibate if one wants to be. The issue is that there is no insufficient numbers of recruits in the UK and Ireland willing to become celibate priests. So, given that there is no barrier to married priests, why don’t we have them?

  • Leonard

    Talk about being taken seriously! did you know that in the USA every year there are approximately 65,000 cases of varifiable sexual child abuse reported that have absolutely nothing to do with Catholic Priests. The John Jay Study reported under 2000 verified cases of sexual child abuse by so called Catholic Priests in the USA over a 52 year period! Celibacy has absolutely nothing to do with sexual child abuse! If you cared about children; really, you would know the statistics for your own country. You seem to be more interested in fostering your pro-homosexual ,anti Catholic agenda then protecting children or helping the cause of truth.

  • Tiggy

    I am not sure why you keep on about homosexuality. The problem is paedophilia. They are two entirely seperate states.Child abuse in the Church( and everywhere else) needs to be properly addressed. Banging on about homosexual Priests will do nothing to further this cause.

  • EastofEngland

    Well, bully for the rest of the world. But these are comments about an an article about Ireland, and in Ireland priests are dying at three times the rate at which they are being ordained.  I can’t find the original piece in The Tablet, but here is the Independent article:

    http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/irelands-sons-turn-their-backs-on-the-priesthood-2063257.html

  • Tiggy

    I think the Holy Father “gets it”. Butb the Vatican machine does not. Along with a fair number of Bishops. This will slowly but surely be resolved. I can testify, the crowd in Rome do not act quickly on anything. The officialdom on the Church, badly needs reformed.

  • Tiggy

    Well perhaps Ireland will get Priests back from some of the lands they helped to Christianise. So bully for them too!!

  • Tiggy

    The Independent AND The Tablet. Dear or dear. No wonder your view is a little skewed.

  • Maria

    Yes but I for one will not be dancing with delight if they bring some of their very unattractive attitudes with them and I am not I hope being racist, but from what I have seen and read the African church has a problem with women and a problem with gays. 

  • Siobhan

    What a very sad person you must be, contrary to what you think Ireland is on the up again and no one can take away Ireland’s glorious gift to the world when she protected Christianity in the Dark Ages. I am sure Congo is very Catholic but it also is a violent country with dreadful sexual assault rates. Give me rain and alcohol anyday.

  • Tiggy

    Well I don t know how much experience you have of African Priests. We have had one in our Parish for some months now. A nicer man you could not meet, and great fun. Perhaps you should meet one or two, and not just read, before you comment on what you think might be their “unattractive attitudes”.  Sigh!!

  • Froh

    I commented in another context on this site about Catholic pretensions to diplomatic immunity and was told this was nonsense.  Clearly I was right.  If the Catholic church claims some divine guidance is it not time it stopped acting as it it were a civil power?  A nuncio is a ruritanian ambassador.

  • D B McGinnity

    This is not a trick question and I have no wish to be discourteous but I wish you to give an objective cogent answer to my proposition. If Jesus rose from the dead as dogma dictates, then he is alive and well. If Jesus ascended into heaven body and soul as dogma dictates, then where is he? If it is a biological fact the human body requires oxygen, water, food (vitamins etc.) and to live within specific scientific values of atmospheric pressure, the how does Jesus maintain life?If he lives on another planet, trillions of light years away when he should be here on earth feeding to starving poor, and healing the sick. The same rule applies to The Virgin Mary who also ascended into heaven body and soul. Where is she, and why does she not give comfort to the afflicted (as in her litany).  I am not being disrespectful, but the Church’s dogmatic assertions, do not make any sense and are devoid of reason. Mickey Mouse is more rational than these outragious propositions.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_CIC3RWXRB36OC3KNXZMNBH3DIE Gerry

    @JohnnyB:disqus 

    You have commented on the human shortcomings of past popes and the Catholic Church in general.  While the Catholic Church is the Church founded by Christ, it does not mean that the holders of that particular office would be impeccable.  Just examine the record of the first generation of the apostles.  St Peter denied Our Lord 3 times during His hour of need, Paul was a former persecutor of Christians and Judas betrayed Our Lord for 30 pieces of silver.  Hardly an auspicious start to the foundation of the Church.  Jesus promised that He would make sure that the Church would be protected from the gates of Hades, but human weaknesses would be present with the good.  The Church is on a pilgrimage and perfection will be reached when Jesus comes again to claim His flock.

  • Anonymous

     If I may correct you firstly about the Blessed Virgin Mary:  She did not ascend into heaven as you seem to think.  She was not divine and could not
    ascend of her own volition.  After her death and laying to rest in her
    tomb, she was lifted up that night by the angels (assumed into heaven) where she was restored to life by her son.

    As to your assertion that ” the Church’s dogmatic assertions, do not make any sense and are devoid
    of reason”, forgive me if I dismiss that as pure Protestantism.  By God’s gift of the faith, Catholics do not need to justify everything by reason, nor do they need to reject that which seems incomprehensible to their five senses just because they cannot reason out how it can possibly apply.

    Mickey Mouse, being the product of a Disneyland animator, has no rational capacity of his own except that which his creator bestows upon him and to compare his rationality with the teachings of the Catholic Church really is so ludicrous that I find myself quite unable to offer you the cogent response which you courteously request.

  • D B McGinnity

    I genuinely do not wish to remonstrate with you but you have not answered the question about how Jesus and Mary could live in outer space without special space protection. I can understand the announcement of the resurrection as this was declared by Constantine & Co., but the announcement of the Assumption of our Lady into heaven in 1950 by Pius XII when modern physics and modern biology were well understood is baffling. I recall a Christian Brother hitting me with his fist and my rupturing my ear drum, because I asked him how Our Lady would breathe in space. I was serious then, as I am being now. He thought that I was being sacrilegious and irreverent, at the age of eight.. So please answer the question. Where are Jesus and Mary if they are both alive? Why do they not share their secret of life in space with the space programme?

  • Tiggy

    Lots of questions. How did we get here? How does something come of nothing? No proof. Faith. A pearl of great price.

  • D B McGinnity

    Your answer is not sufficient in contemporary society. I find it easy to understand in terms of neurochemistry, neurotransmission and psychodynamics i.e. techniques of persuasion, suggestion, indoctrination conditioning and reinforcement. That is what the church has done since it’s inception has is still trying to do : indoctrinate the people through fear and superstition like witchdoctors, because that what priests are. Catholic priests are the purveyors of fear,mendacity, prurience, degradation and vice, and the game is up.       There is a plethora of objective evidence to show that the life, death, resurrection and ascension of Jesus is a myth. I believe in the pristine teachings of Jesus especially the sermon on the mount. I believe that at the last supper Jesus told the apostles to “do this in memory of me” when they were eating. He instructed them to feed the poor. All of this makes sense, but the contrived story of Jesus at the behest of Constantine and taught as truth by the Catholic Church is now seen as mythology. It is sad that The Catholic Church cannot accept that they are in fast decline. Question: Why does Jesus not come down to earth to save his church from destruction”.

  • Anonymous

    You seem to accept that Christ ascended into heaven.  To do this He would need to defy gravity, which under your proposition cannot happen because science cannot accept having its laws broken – all material is (normally) subject to the law of gravity.
    Similarly, when the sun danced in the sky in front of 70,000 people at Fatima, science was unable to explain it.
    If you are unable to accept that God, who created everything that was made, can do what He likes when He likes despites the laws of man, then you must accept that He has not given you the supernatural gift of faith.  Without it, little of what the Church teaches will be acceptable to you.
    Muse on Mr McGinnity, muse on – but, more to your benefit, pray to the Holy Ghost for the gift of faith.

  • D B McGinnity

    Fatima and Lourdes were scientific replicated in three different parts of the world at the same under objective scientific conditions in 1974. It can be rereplicated again if required. Finding suitable hypnotic subjects is the trick, the more gullible the better, Then use repeated suggestion (now called brain washing). The technique was demonstrated in the book and films The Manchurian Canditate. As for the sun standing dancing. The people were told to look at the sun and of course it gave the illusion of dancing. What a stupid thing for Our Lady to tell the people do do. The voice was a trick of ventriloquism. I have seen the evidence. A school child could do this with a simple book of hypnotic instruction.

  • Aaron Saunderson-Cross

    Our Lord Jesus Christ “sitteth at the right hand of God the Father almighty.” He maintains life because he is God incarnate. Our Lady maintains life, presumably, because her soul participates in Heavenly Glory; we read that she “completed the course of her earthly life.” To suggest for a moment that Our Lady does not intercede constantly for her children; that she does not give her entire self for the afflicted in her prayers is incredibly unkind, as it is to suggest that they live “on another planet.”

  • Honeybadger

    There’s no getting through to you, is there?