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A la carte Bible leads to hypocrisy

Richard Ryan said that the Catholic Church would do well to follow the ideals of the Bible in order to prevent further scandals of child abuse (Letters, January 5). I do not feel that this would be a wise move.

After all, in Numbers 17-18, following the Hebrews' victory over an enemy tribe, God commands them to: "Kill every male among the little ones, and kill every woman that hath known man by sleeping with him.

"But all the women, children, that have not known a man by lying with him, keep alive for yourselves."

It appears to me that the Bible condones the murder and rape of young children, and I most certainly would not quote it in an effort to discourage such despicable practices. Mr Ryan criticises hypocritical churchmen, but I feel hypocrisy extends to the a la carte following of the Bible that is predominant among Christians.

Ciaran O Dubhthaigh
Kilmovee, Co Mayo

Irish Independent