Wednesday 21 March 2018

Stephen J Costello: Righteous furore over Vatican embassy could start move to renew our republic

We need fresh ideas -- not political posturing such as Eamon Gilmore's decision to remove our ambassador, writes Stephen J Costello

ROSARY brigade to the right! Red rose brigade to the left! Nobody should be left standing in the centre. Good. Quick march!

Who said the God-squad and the secularists were a hangover from the Eighties? The divide is alive and well in post-Christian Ireland. Fine Gael backbenchers are urging the Government to reopen the Vatican embassy. They are supporting the church's role in education. Labour is seeking to diminish the church's role and asking for a re-examination of State funding for school chaplains. The ideological gap may yet become a yawning gulf.

On the Fine Gael side are Peter Mathews and Mary Mitchell O'Connor. Ruairi Quinn and Aodhan O Riordain line up on the left. Trendy Trots like O Riordain want to screen civil servants to ensure there are no lurking Christians among them.

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