Just when you think things can't get any worse, a new front is opening on the assault on the Church, this time courtesy of the retired Bishop of Derry, Dr Edward Daly. In his new book he advocates for a change to the rule of celibacy in the Church. We'll see where that goes. Given what we are dealing with at the moment, this is most unhelpful.
I was watching last night's Frontline programme on RTE 1, hosted by Pat Kenny. The topic was the Seal of the Confessional, and it was a most desperate production. It should really be called "Flatline" because the atmosphere was deadening. The usual suspects were there advocating that the Church should disregard the Seal: Minister Frances Fitzgerald was leading the attack, with Gina Menzies, Andrew Madden and a guy called Brendan with rearguard action. On the other side were notables such as Fr Vincent Twomey, David Quinn and Rosemary Swords, leader of the Elijah Fellowship Community in Dublin, whose intervention was powerful and disarming. Some legal voices were also heard and they pointed out that any legislation which sought to compel priests to reveal confessions would be unconstitutional and thrown out of court. So at least it was good for the Minister to hear that fact.
Meanwhile another blow has been dished out to Enda Kenny by former Taoiseach Brian Cowen. He has said that the Vatican was trying to assist the government in its investigations, but the commission established by the government used the wrong channels. When told what channels to use the commission decided not to use them, and then accused the Vatican of refusing to cooperate. It seems to me that there may have been another agenda at work here, and perhaps, it seems to me, an opportunity was "created" to show the Vatican in a negative light so as to embellish the report's critique of Catholicism.
In other news, it seems David Norris is thinking of getting himself back into the race for the park - to become the next President of Ireland. It seems the people of Ireland want him to resume his campaign. Ironic given recent events: another indication that there is a most unsavoury double standard at work in Ireland today.