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Friday 2 December 2016

Dancing priest's jig interrupts St Paul's protest

Conor Sheils

Published 21/11/2011 | 05:00

Fr Neil Horan at the protest at St Paul's. Conor Shiels

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DANCING priest Father Neil Horan felt the wrath of anti-capitalist protesters when he interrupted a packed demonstration with a traditional Irish jig.

The controversial cleric caused a stir when he started dancing a jig at the Occupy London Stock Exchange camp outside St Paul's cathedral on Saturday afternoon.

Activists -- who claim to believe in free speech -- saw red when the Co Kerry priest overshadowed their protest by performing a traditional Irish jig while holding a placard on the steps of the landmark cathedral.

Several protesters tried to interrupt the one-man demonstration, but they were quickly told to "go home" by Fr Horan's female bodyguard.

One onlooker said, "Representatives from the camp approached him a number of times but there was no stopping him -- he just kept on going and his female assistant made sure any troublemakers were kept at bay."

But the defrocked cleric hit back claiming that the controversial camp was a waste of time.

He said, "The solution is not setting up camps -- however well-meaning.

"That won't bring in the new world -- that will only happen through Christ."

But he went on to lash out at the role played by the Irish Catholic Church in helping the poor.

"I think it's fair to say that the established church in Ireland backed up the system and propped up the political leadership throughout history."

Fr Horan refused to rule out disrupting other protest camps, such as the one outside the Central Bank on Dublin's Dame Street.

The priest was jailed for dancing across the racetrack during the 2003 British Grand Prix.

Irish Independent

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