Thursday 14 December 2017

Resignation of bishops will not solve anything

The church must overcome its personal divisions to move closer towards any healing, writes Maeve Sheehan

AMONGST men of the cloth, Bishop Martin Drennan has a reputation as a tenacious cleric. A priest who worked with him in Dublin remembered him as a team player, determined and forthright. Another likened him to a doughty Kilkenny hurler (he was born in Piltown) who will fight his case to the end. Kilkenny hurlers usually win, and Bishop Drennan is already claiming victory in the battle for his resignation, even though the match isn't over yet.

He returned from the Irish bishops' two-day summit with the Pope last week to an interview in his Galway diocese, claiming to have the support of all of his fellow bishops, including his one-time nemesis Archbishop Diarmuid Martin. He managed a polite dig at the Archbishop, suggesting that the Dublin prelate had no business calling him to account in the first place: "he has no direct responsibility for me."

Archbishop Martin has not responded, but the remarks are revealing of the sorry state of affairs within the Irish hierarchy at the moment.

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