Colum Kenny: The Vatican sees Ireland as a disgraced and busted flush
The Vatican report holds no surprises in its clear assertion of top-down hierarchical authority
Published 25/03/2012 | 05:00
'This is an Irish Reformation -- Catholics turning quietly Protestant, but without necessarily changing church'
'Priests were not needed in Ireland, where for every vacancy there were 20 or more applicants." So wrote Bishop John Joseph Hogan when he recalled why in 1848 he had left his home in Bruff, Co Limerick, to become a pastor on the US frontier in Missouri. How times have changed.
Then people were starving in the Great Famine and there was no shortage of applicants for parishes. Today only a few dozen men are preparing for the priesthood in Ireland.