Friday 17 August 2018

Any whiff of faith and the illiberal liberals start Catholic-bashing

The Catholic Church has made mistakes, but its great work is being ignored in a modern wave of cynicism

FAMILY FAITH: Wendy Grace and her husband Karl Melady meet Pope Francis in June 2014 at a Papal Audience in Rome. The Pope is due to arrive in Ireland on Saturday, August 25
FAMILY FAITH: Wendy Grace and her husband Karl Melady meet Pope Francis in June 2014 at a Papal Audience in Rome. The Pope is due to arrive in Ireland on Saturday, August 25

Wendy Grace

Fascist, backwards, bigot, homophobe - just some of the words many Catholics have been called for daring to have a voice in the public sphere. And with Pope Francis's visit less than two weeks away, it's going to be oh so tempting for politicians and pundits to participate in long diatribes of venom directed at the Catholic Church. And who could blame them? Think of the likes, the shares, the retweets, the backslapping and adulation you can get.

It doesn't matter that there are a million people on hospital waiting lists, just have a pop at a bishop and that will be a handy distraction for the health minister from actually doing his job. All you have to do is moan about many of the half-truths and, often, misinformation out there about the Catholic Church and then let the headlines roll. No-one will apply any intellectual rigour to what you are saying and the mob has managed to silence into oblivion many of the voices who might challenge you.

Bashing the Church is all part of our new "progressive and modern Ireland" image. We're much more focused on the common good now that we can be our very own moral compass. The homelessness figures hitting a record high isn't that big a deal, women are less safe in Ireland than ever before, no biggie, and vulture capitalism will eventually come around and set rent at a rate we can all afford, right?

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