Sunday 17 December 2017

In celebrating Casey's downfall, we forgot he was just a man

I was overjoyed at the late bishop's humiliation, but in some ways he was just another victim of the Church

SCANDAL: Annie Murphy interviewed by Gay Byrne on ‘The Late Late Show’ where she revealed details of her relationship with Casey
SCANDAL: Annie Murphy interviewed by Gay Byrne on ‘The Late Late Show’ where she revealed details of her relationship with Casey
Declan Lynch

Declan Lynch

In 1992, when it emerged that the then bishop of Galway had a son, and that there was some unresolved issue around diocesan funds, naturally I rejoiced.

For much of the previous decade, there had been a cultural civil war going on in Ireland, and my side was losing. Divorce, abortion, homosexuality, contraception, these were supposedly the issues, but there was really just one, - the Church's assertion of its power over a people who were losing the faith, or at least not keeping it very well.

So yes, it was a truly marvellous day for Ireland when the bishop absconded, leaving behind him the most abysmal embarrassment. And there is no doubt that in the decisive battle of that civil war, the Divorce Referendum of 1995, the Casey scandal helped to deliver that terrifyingly thin victory of 50.28pc to 49.72pc for the "liberal agenda".

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