The Lumen Fidei Institute, which represents parents from every diocese in Ireland, would like to invite you to greet us and to join with us in prayer on Tuesday 12th March, 2019. On that day, we will host a conference in The Glenroyal Hotel, Maynooth, which seeks to address some of the problems we lay Catholics are faced with in the Ireland of 2019.
At 11.30am, God willing, we will process with a statue of Our Lady of Fatima from the Glenroyal Hotel to The Columba Centre in Maynooth where the Irish Episcopal Conference will host their spring meeting. We hope to recite the Rosary along the way.
On arrival at the Columba Centre, we intend to present a petition to the Irish Bishop’s Conference from faithful lay Catholics asking our bishops to address the serious concerns we have, which we feel are not being properly addressed at present. We want our children to grow up in the full knowledge of their Catholic faith, safe from predators, especially the clerical homosexual predators who have caused so much damage to the Catholic Church in Ireland. We want our children to be well equipped to live holy lives as upstanding and exemplary Irish Catholic citizens who serve God and His Catholic Church first, and their country second.
Our conference includes presentations on the following three themes.
Catholic Children Deserve a Catholic Education!
The schools under the patronage of the Irish Bishops are failing spectacularly in their mission to teach the fullness of the Catholic Faith to our children. For over two decades, the faulty Alive-O programme has been foisted on Catholic children with disastrous consequences for their faith. At the time of its introduction, many Catholic parents and teachers pointed out their well-founded concerns about the deficiencies of the Alive-O programme to their bishops, but they were ignored, and their concerns were dismissed with disastrous consequences for Catholic children.
When Dr Eanna Johnson conducted an assessment survey of the Alive-O programme in 2007 as part of his research for a PhD in Catechesis, the results of his survey, which showed the failure of the Alive-O programme in instructing children in the faith and vindicated the concerns expressed earlier by Catholic parents and teachers, were also ignored by the Irish bishops. The Alive-O programme was permitted to undermine the faith of Irish Catholic school children for a further ten years before a new programme was introduced. Dr Johnson’s follow up survey in 2017 showed that in those ten years there was a further serious decline in the basic faith knowledge of the children subject to the Alive-O programme.
It is hard to understand why, when there are perfectly good Catholic school programmes available, the Irish Bishops do not avail themselves of these programmes despite the clear evidence that the Irish produced programmes are failing our children.
The secondary school situation is not much better given that now even the religious syllabus is controlled by the state since RE has become a leaving certificate subject.
Clear evidence was given of the Irish Bishop’s failure to oversee the Catholic schools under their patronage from the results of the RTE exit poll on last year’s referendum to allow our government to legislate for the killing of certain innocent human beings in their mother’s wombs. That poll showed that 87.6% of those in the 18 – 24 age bracket, most of whom were educated in Catholic schools and were within six years of leaving those schools, voted to allow the killing. (Source RTE website)
In Irish Catholic schools, it seems that the teaching of Catholicism is reserved solely to the Religious Education class and does not permeate the whole school syllabus. This position is untenable for a Catholic school.
There is also the widespread promotion of the unhealthy LGBT lifestyle in Catholic schools which is not publicly opposed by the Irish Bishop’s conference. This false ideology is even promoted through the school textbooks. For example, the Folens book ‘Active Maths 1’, which is widely used in Irish Catholic schools, contains a full-page advertisement for the same-sex lifestyle promoting group ‘Belong-To’. One wonders why this unhealthy and dangerous lifestyle is being promoted through a Maths book in Catholic schools.
Other Catholic schools host LGBT days or so-called LGBT ‘anti-bullying’ days, which are simply a propaganda tool for promoting the same-sex lifestyle. Children are also being told that some of them are born ‘gay’ and that they cannot change this. Indeed, there is a Bill going through the Oireachtas at present which will criminalise anyone who would seek to help those with same-sex attraction to overcome that attraction and return to normalcy.
Given the serious and well documented detrimental health issues that are associated with the same-sex lifestyle, the presentation of LGBT favourable instruction to schoolchildren constitutes a form of child abuse. One can only wonder at the Irish bishop’s silence on this issue given their declared determination to protect children from abuse.
The Irish Bishops have an onerous duty to ensure that children are protected from this propaganda in the Catholic schools of which they are the patrons. Any public utterances by the Irish Bishop’s Conference which seek to assure parents that the Irish Bishops are concerned with child safeguarding, are rendered meaningless when our children are exposed to a false and dangerous LGBT ideology in Catholic schools and when the Catholic education provided in Catholic schools is seriously deficient both in the content presented and in the lack of proper moral formation provided across the range of school subjects.
One is not surprised at this lack of forthrightness in defending our children from the false and dangerous LGBT ideology from the Irish Bishops, as not one of the Irish Bishops had the courage to publicly complain about Fr James Martin promoting the same-sex lifestyle at the World Meeting of Families, last year.
Indeed, the Irish Bishop’s own programme to prepare lay Catholics for the World Meeting of Families called ‘Amoris’, contained promotional material for the same-sex lifestyle in both the printed material and in the video presentations that were produced. Again, not one Irish bishop defended the rights of Irish Catholics to be protected from this harmful material which contradicts Catholic Church teaching.
The day will come when Irish Bishops will be accused of covering up the homosexual agenda by allowing this filth into our Catholic schools, especially as the damage it causes to children and young people becomes more and more obvious.
Irish Seminarians Deserve a Catholic Formation!
As with Catholic schools, it is the children of lay Catholic parents who are admitted to Irish seminaries for priestly formation, and just as it is an affront to Catholic parents to allow the children’s Catholic faith to be undermined in schools, it is also an affront to Catholic parents when the Irish bishops permit individuals who publicly or privately dissent from Catholic Church teaching to instruct young men who have entered the Irish seminaries in order to study for the priesthood.
Since 1968, and possibly before that, the Maynooth Seminary has allowed dissenting professors who are also priests, to give defective instruction to young men in the Maynooth seminary. These young men are ordained as priests with a defective understanding of the Catholic faith.
One of those dissenting professors, Fr Denis O’Callaghan, who publicly dissented from ‘Humanae Vitae’ was appointed as secretary to the then Catholic Marriage Advisory Council (CMAC). This was a grave insult to the young couples who would go to CMAC for marriage preparation. At these courses, detailed information on contraception was given, contrary to Catholic Church teaching on the matter. The scant regard shown to our young people then, persists today, as is evidenced by the widespread promotion of an LGBT ideology which is also contrary to our Catholic faith, in our Catholic schools and at other Catholic forums.
These dissenters should be dismissed from the seminary staff and should not be allowed any active part in the formation of young men to the priesthood.
Young Irish seminarians in Maynooth, in the recent past, as part of their formation were questioned about their sexuality and the details of their sexual experiences by a woman. That no bishop could see the problem of having a female speaking to young males about intimate sexual matters is astounding.
There have been numerous recent cases of young Irish Catholic priests engaging in inappropriate homosexual behaviour. These men should not have been ordained to the priesthood and the problem of the apparent homosexual culture that exists in Maynooth needs to be fully eradicated. This is not a new problem. Pope St John XXIII approved the instruction “Careful Selection And Training Of Candidates For The States Of Perfection And Sacred Orders” which was proclaimed by the Sacred Congregation for Religious on February 2, 1961. In that instruction we read the following.
“Advancement to religious vows and ordination should be barred to those who are afflicted with evil tendencies to homosexuality or pederasty, since for them the common life and the priestly ministry would constitute serious dangers.”
“By the faithful observance of all these directives, the task of investigating the canonical fitness of candidates for the state of perfection and Sacred Orders will meet with success; those who are not fit will be barred in time and at the very outset, and only those worthy and fit will be admitted to Sacred Orders.”
The lay faithful of Ireland can only lament that the instructions in that document were not strictly followed in the Seminary in Maynooth. If they had been faithfully followed, perhaps the children who suffered abuse at the hands of homosexually active priests, would have been spared their tragic ordeals. The Irish Bishop’s conference continues to refuse to acknowledge the largely homosexual nature of the abuse problem.
The Laity Deserve Faithful Catholic Clergy!
It shows a tremendous lack of respect for the laity, when priests who publicly contradict Catholic Church teaching are not publicly corrected by their Bishops. The instances of these public utterances seem to be increasing with priests openly publicising their same-sex attraction and intentions to vote for the public recognition of active same-sex relationships; priests publicly calling for women priests; priests publicly calling for those living in adulterous relationships to be admitted to Holy Communion without a firm purpose of amendment of life; priests using an incorrect form for the consecration; priests disobeying Canon 915 of the code of Canon Law which forbids certain people from being admitted to Holy Communion; widespread liturgical abuses during funeral Masses; priests hosting TV celebrities during Holy Mass who give a talk in the place of the homily and who desecrate the Holy Sacrifice by calling for loud cheers and clapping just prior to the consecration at Holy Mass.
These are just some of the public abuses that are not publicly corrected by the bishops in whose diocese these abuses occur.
For years, young engaged Catholic couples have been presented with false teaching on contraception at the Catholic Pre-Marriage courses run under the auspices of the Irish Bishops. Originally, as mentioned above, this happened under CMAC, the ‘Catholic Marriage Advisory Council’ and it has continued as part of the courses run by ACCORD. Accord counsellors are given training presentations from people who do not uphold the Catholic teaching contained in ‘Humanae Vitae’. For example, Dr Tony Hanna of the Armagh Archdiocese has given presentations to ACCORD counsellors where he contradicted Catholic Church teaching.
Most recently ACCORD has become the cause of scandal because it has agreed to counsel those in active same-sex relationships. The only reason for this is because the state threatened to stop funding the ACCORD service. No assurance has been giving by ACCORD that any such couples will be counselled to cease their disordered relationships, probably because to do so would also bring about a cessation of funding from the State.
The great disservice to the laity by the failure to publicly and in practice uphold the fullness of Catholic Church teaching, is all the more serious given that it endangers the eternal salvation of those affected. Sadly, at least one of our bishops has publicly failed to uphold magisterial Catholic teaching on Hell on a national radio broadcast.
Faithful Catholic parents in Ireland are tired of being dismissed and ignored by Irish bishops when we express concern for the safety of our children. Whether such concerns involve LGBT materials or Buddhist Mindfulness practices being promoted to our children in Catholic schools, or the fact that our children are subjected to false and misleading information on pre-marriage courses or in the Irish seminaries, or if our children hear Catholic Church teaching being publicly contradicted at Holy Mass.
We now seek a commitment from our bishops that such abuses will stop, that the Catholic faith will be properly taught and fully upheld once again in Ireland, and that the points mentioned in this letter will be acted upon.
With this in mind, we intend to present a petition to the Irish Bishops at the Spring Meeting of the Irish Bishop’s Conference in Maynooth. We ask you to meet with us to accept that petition on behalf of the members of your diocese who will be present in Maynooth on 12th March, 2019
May God bless you in the most Sacred Heart of Jesus