Sarah Al-Arshani The Insider.

Prince Philip, the husband of Queen Elizabeth II, died on Friday and his legacy is muddied by a decades-long history of off-the-cuff problematic and casually racist comments. 

Philip, who died at 99, was the longest-serving consort in the history of the British monarchy. While he’s remembered for his work with charity organizations like the World Wide Fund for Nature, he’s repeatedly made offensive statements.

The Duke, who married the Queen in 1947, retired from public life in May 2017 at the age of 95, but for more than 40 years prior his racist, sexist, or degrading statements were brushed off as “gaffes.”

In 1986, while on a visit to China, Philip described Beijing as “ghastly.” He also told British students: “If you stay here much longer you’ll all be slitty-eyed.”

That same year, while speaking at a World Wildlife Fund meeting, Philip made an insensitive comment on Cantonese cuisine. 

“If it has four legs and is not a chair, has wings and is not an airplane, or swims and is not a submarine, the Cantonese will eat it,” he said. 

In 1988, he told a student who was trekking through Papua New Guinea: “You managed not to get eaten then?”

In 1994, he asked residents of the Cayman Islands if most of them were “descended from pirates” and in 2002 he asked an aboriginal leader in Queensland: “Do you still throw spears at each other?”

Kehinde Andrews, Professor of Black Studies at Birmingham City University, told CNN: “He was a throwback to old-school racism.

Painting him as a benign, cuddly uncle of the nation is simply untrue.”

Philip also made many sexist remarks. “You are a woman, aren’t you?” he asked a Kenyan woman in 1984 when she gave him a gift. 

In 1988 he said: “I don’t think a prostitute is more moral than a wife, but they are doing the same thing,” Mashable reported. 

In 2009 he met a female Sea Cadet who told him she worked at a nightclub. Phillip asked her: “Is it a strip club?”

Other comments made by the Duke were generally offensive. 

In 2002, he said “So who’s on drugs here?… HE looks as if he’s on drugs,” while pointing to a 14-year-old member of a Bangladeshi youth club. 

He told the president of Nigeria that he looked like he was “ready for bed,” because he was dressed in a traditional robe.

Philip also told a 13-year-old who wanted to become an astronaut that he should lose some weight. 

His history of offensive comments comes at a time when racial sensitivity and racism in the Royal family is being looked into after Prince Harry and Meghan Markle told Oprah Winfrey that members of the family were concerned over what skin tone her son Archie would have before he was born. Markle never specifically said who made those comments. 

In a follow-up appearance, Winfrey told host Gayle King that it was not Queen Elizabeth or Prince Philip who had “concerns” on the topic.

Prince Harry and Markle did pay tribute to Philip after his death was announced. 

“In loving memory of His Royal Highness the Duke of Edinburgh,” the couple posted on their Archewell website. “Thank you for your service…You will be greatly missed.”


The death of most people is sad.

All kinds of poeple have all kinds of things to say when someone dies.

There are always those who want to canonise.

Then there are those who want to demonise.

But no human life is so simple. There is good in the worst of us and evil in the best of us.

Philip had a very difficult childhood as a child of the overthrown Greek royal family.

He was separated from his mother who suffered severe mental health struggles.

He fell on his feet when he met Princess Elazabeth and married her.

He never wanted for anything material.

While staying married he is reported to have had a very varied love life.

He served in the Navy – not of course that royals in the forces experience the rough side of things.

He can certainly be credited with steadying the British Royal Family.

Some will applaud that and others will not be happy.


I’d like readers comments on that.



This blog, its authors and its readers have not forgotten about Silverstream and its scandals.


Last we heard was that Prior Kirby was back as an ordinary monk and one of the community, Elijah, was made prior, even though he is not a priest.

Sources tell us that Kirby’s health has become more fragile.


Sources tell us that the Irish police, the Garda, have more or less finished their investigation of Silverstream’s finances.

We are led to believe that they have recommended prosecutions.


Another source has revealed to us that at least one seminarian who went on retreat there in the past experienced secual hartassment.


The brave whistleblower has not returned to the monastery and it is highly unlikely he will.

He has been the subject of a ludicrous and vicious whispering campaign and outlandish accusations.

However, he has been working closely with the Garda and is a highly truthful and reliable witness.

I am alerting readers to the likelihood of a major scandal at Silverstream as this year progresses.

Meanwhile, Silverstream has the full support of the incumbent of Meath – Tom “The Mack” Deenihan.



Many Irish priests, religious and monks are addicted to the very dangerous Gay app called Grindr.

One Northern Ireland priest recently told me of his horrific experience on Grindr.

He got talking to a man from the Lisburn Road in Belfast and travelled a considerable journey to meet the man. They had agreed to have anal sex with the priest being the “bottom” and the man being the “top”.

But when the priest arrived at the house the man had a BDSM room in his house.

He immediately tied up the priest and beat him to a pulp and then threw him in a rear passage beside dust bins.

The priest also lost his phone and wallet and ended up in hospital.

He was too embarrassed to go to the police and ruin his own reputation.

Afterwards, sadly, he continued to use Grindr 🥺


This week I was talking to another man who suffered greatly through Grindr.

Some nasty people on Grindr stole his information and pictures and placed them on a paedophilia web site and informed the police.

After a very painful nine months his name was cleared. But he lost his job and has suffered serious physical and mental challenges and a litany of threats and abuse from neighbours.

Grindr featured hugely in the Maynooth “summer of love”.

It also featured in the downfall of number of fairly high profile priests.

Grindr is NOT men looking for love, companionship, a partner or emotional bonding.

Grindr is about men looking for wild, irresponsible, anonymous sex.

It is also about the dark side of gay sex – assault, rape, violence, humiliation etc.

No half decent man would want that, surely?

And why would a priest, monk or seminarian want to get involved in such a “meat market”.

Are people not better than that?

Are priests not better than that?

Gentlemen and Reverend Gentlemen especially should avoid Grindr.




I am very sad to hear of the death of Hans Kung.

But he lived a long and productive life and leaves an unforgettable legacy.

I was always a very big fan of his and liked reading his books – even though they were a marathon of a read.

I loved his book “Infallibility”.

I also liked his short book on death and have put it away with a book by the Dala Lama “for when the times comes”.

He has been very badly treated by the Vatican.

Theologians should be allowed to freely explore ideas without being silenced



I still wear my clerical collar most of the time.

But many if not most priests have stopped wearing it regularly.

Most members of the oriestsbtrade union, the ACP – Association of Catholic Priests have stopped wearing it.

Most of them ate pictured these days wearing horrible old charity shop types of jumpers and shirts.

They think it makes them “kool” and non clerical.

I wear my collar for two important reasons:

1. To be a witness to the Christian faith and my ministry in it.

2. To be a very visible approach for anyone who needs to talk or my help.

The nonsense the ACP & Co talk about tge collar being barrier is just that – nonsense.

Barriers are created between people through behaviour and attitudes.

For 45 years now I have ministered in various places and among a great variety of people.

I have never found my collar to be a barrier.

I particularly wear my collar on my travels around the world.

I have had the most wonderfully friendly and pastoral encounters with people who approached me precisely because I was visibly a priest.

I have happily been drawn into emergency and tragic situations as a result of being a priest.

When thumbing a lift was a very common thing in Ireland in the past I always gave lifts and had great conversations with hitch hikers and heard many a Confession in the car.


Yes, since the abuse crisis has arisen I have been named called and verbally abused especially in Dublin.

On these occasions I stopped and engaged in conversations with my abusers.

I accepted their anger at the abuse and was quite happy to ve the conduit for that justified anger.

Abd tgen tgey allowed ne to pointbout to tgem that 90% of priests do not abuse chikdren.

I also acknowledge with them that the RCC is very corrupt.

The RCC and many priests and bishops have scandalised decent people and we have to own and process that.

Priests going around hiding in jumpers and gansies do not address the problem.

Priests running “we feel sorry for ourselves” courses and workshops for priests does not address the problem either.

Priests are not the real victims.

Men, women and children fiffled with and raped by priests are the real victims.

Reverend Gentlemen, wear your collars and take the flack involved and grow a pair !!!





Cleric criticises Bishop of Waterford over alleged Covid breach

Bishop of Waterford and Lismore Alphonsus Cullinan has been criticised after a screenshot was circulated of the bishop celebrating Mass without wearing a mask in close proximity with a number of other priests.

MON, 05 APR, Irish Examiner. Eoghan Dalton

The Bishop of Waterford and Lismore has been strongly criticised by a cleric over the fallout from an alleged breach of Covid guidelines.

Fr Tim Hazlewood, a member of the Association of Catholic Priests, said bishops in particular need to give leadership during the pandemic, especially when it comes to observing guidelines and restrictions.

Fr Hazlewood was commenting after a screenshot was circulated of Bishop Cullinan celebrating Mass without wearing a mask in close proximity with a number of other priests.

“When you’re in a position of power, you’re seen as a person of influence and every single thing we do is interpreted. There’s consequences as a leader in what you do,” said Fr Hazlewood, who is based in Killeagh in east Cork.

He said the leadership of the Catholic Church “still needs” to accept it no longer has a position of privilege. 

To me, it begs the question: does the Church still think it has privilege? Are we above the law? [In the past] privilege was used to control people and we could do what we want. That day is gone and the sooner we move on from it the better.”

It’s understood gardaí spoke with Bishop Cullinan in recent weeks after a complaint from a member of the public.

Screenshot of the Mass celebrated by Bishop of Waterford and Lismore Alphonsus Cullinan in close proximity to other priests. None were wearing masks.

Bishop Cullinan, who has repeatedly declined to address the matter, was seen in a screenshot from the Church online video of the mass flanked by priests without masks on a church altar in Tramore.

The Mass, held to mark a local seminarian’s admission to become a deacon, and which was streamed live, was led by Bishop Cullinan at the Holy Cross Church in Tramore on February 14.

The screenshot of the service circulated afterwards, showing Bishop Cullinan and the two priests at close quarters on the altar, along with another two nearby.

None of the five were wearing masks at that point in the Mass and it is not known how long the bishop and the two priests were on the altar at the same time.

According to guidance for religious services, published by the Health Protection Surveillance Centre, organisers need to “ensure social distancing of two metres is maintained . . . including by those leading or contributing to the performance of religious rites”, while “congregants should wear cloth face coverings or masks” during indoor ceremonies.

The guidance adds that the “religious leader should wear a cloth face covering or mask during the service” and can do without a mask “only if she/he is more than 2 metres from any participant”.

The Garda matter is now believed to be closed and no formal warning or charges will be issued against the bishop.

The office of the diocese did not respond to requests for comment over the past month and Bishop Cullinan said he was “too busy” to respond when contacted.

Catholics are ‘frustrated’

Bishop Cullinan spoke out against the level 5 ban on attendees at Mass last week, saying  Catholics are “frustrated” and “feel underrepresented and discriminated against”.

In the statement, issued in a general press release by the diocese, the bishop said  “priests and parish volunteers have been very diligent in ensuring that our churches are sanitised and safe” during the pandemic.

An Garda Siochána said when dealing with potential breaches of guidelines, they operate a “graduated policing response” to potential flouting of restrictions, whereby gardaí first engage and educate people on the measures ahead of stricter action.


Phonsie is always calling on others to act and live properly.

So, he needs to act and live properly too.

He did break Covid regulations.

He should acknowledge that and say he will not do it again.

But who is this Hazelwood crerp in Cloyne?

He is one of the leading “lights” in the ACP – Association of Catholic Priests.

They are a group of wanna be bishops and theologians who have gone no where in life and are going nowhere.

They are a blind priest’s trade union thinking priests can do no wrong.

Phonsie will not lose a minutes sleep over Timmy Hazelwood & Co.



Even though Ger Fitzgerald has been credibly abused of sexual intercourse with an Ennis lady parishioner, he has been allowed by his bishop, Fintan Monahan, to cheekily preside over all the Holy Week and Easter ceremonies.


If Ger Fitzgerald was a nurse, doctor, civil servant, policeman, social worker etc he would have been asked to step aside, on full pay, pending the outcome of the investigation.

But once again, we see the clerics, regarding themselves, as different and superior to others.

They say: “Do what we say, but don’t do what we do”.

In the meantime, while Ger basks in the adulation of his friends and parishioners, the woman involved is under threat and attack in Ennis to thenpoint that dhe has had to go into hiding.

A week or so ago the woman contacted me and I have been supporting her everyday since.

She has told me her story, and her proofs, and I believe her 100%.

Furthermore, shevhascsent her proofs to Fintan Monahan.

Killaloe sources are saying that Ger is denying everything and basically calling the woman a liar.

Ger is reported to be in hiding – in the home of an Ennis single parent, whose name is known to the blog.

He is also receiving support from his long term friend, Tina Whelan, a community worker.

This story is a scandal calling out for honesty and action from the bishop and diocese of Killaloe.


The alleged priest rapist from Northern Ireland contacted his alleged victim in the past few days asking him to drop the allegations against him!

When the victim told me this I regarded the priest’s actions as an attempt to pervert the course of justice and imnediately informed senior officers in the PSNI – Police Service for Northern Ireland.

The contact is now being investigated.

I have also contacted the priest’s bishop and asked that hecstep aside on full pay pending the outcome of the police investigation.

The bishop has done nothing.


The Catholic Church has told us that it has completely changed when it comes to treating sexual complaints seriously and urgently.

But here we have two Irish bishops, in two Irish dioceses, allowing priests to work on as normal after serious complaints have been lodged.

This will not change until we see bishops in handcuffs being led from courthouses on the way to prison.




Easter, not Christmas, is the primary feast of the Christian year.

Easter has inspired great painters and great musicians, like Tanner and Handel above.

Ressurection, to “rise again” implies that previously, there was a fall or a collapse.

In Jesus’ case, it was his death. His Resurrection was his return to life.

But the universe, the world, nature and mankind is an ongoing process of millions and millions of falls and millions and millions or rising agains, millions and millions of resurrections.

Stars fall from the skies and new stars appear.

The sun falls at night and rises again in the morning.

Flowers retract into themselves in the evening and open again to drink the morning dew.

Two and four-legged creatures lie at night and rise with the light.

The dark envelopes and the light reveals.

The silence of the night is shattered by the dawn chorus.

The pain of childbirth is obliterated by the sleeping baby in the rocking cot.

The surgeons cut gives way to a surge of health.

Life is all about the falls and collapses giving way to the risings and resurrections.

Its about all the Good Fridays yielding to all the Easter Sundays.

Its about all the screams being silenced by all the alleluias.

My friend, may all your Good Fridays, whatever they may be, find all their Easter Sundays.

May all your moments of forsakenness, find all their conjoined alleluias.

May the Easter Jesus give you new sight,
Let you really hear and really see,
Strengthen your weary limbs,
Lift your heavy heart,
And above all else,
Untie your fettered feet

And free you from any tomb,

In which you yourself,

Or others,

Have held you captive.


Easter Lunch



The ongoing Ennis scandal involving Fr Ger Fitzgerald – accused of breaking his celibacy promise and Yvonne – his alleged mistress now forced into hiding out of fear – obviously has a profound human dimension.

Both are human beings and both are suffering in different ways – and both are feeling threatened and vulnerable.

My attention was drawn to Ger celebrating Mass on Holy Thursday evening at 8.30 pm. He came across as a man who had not slept well, was dishevelled, spoke hesitantly and looked as if he was not really present.

On the other hand, Yvonne is being treated like a leper in Ennis, has come under intense criticism and threat and is in hiding.

It looks as if Ennis, or certain parts of it, are supporting and comforting the erring priest and condemning the woman for telling her story.

Ennis is treating Yvonne with the judgement and condemnation with which the Jews treated the woman caught in adultery and Mary Magdalen.

Ger is 40.

Yvonne is 33.

Ger has a public promise of celibacy.

Yvonne is a single woman.

The Church, with Ger’s permission, has appointed Ger to be the model and teacher of morals to the people of Ennis.

Yvonne is a private, previously unknown individual who does not represent any religion and does not preach or make moral pronouncements.


Fintan Monahan

No criminal offence has been committed in this case. So there is no role for the police.

The “crime” is moral, pastoral and canonical.

The “authority” in this case is the bishop, Fintan Monahan.

He is also the person with the highest duty of care as Ger is his priest and Yvonne is his daughter in God.

Fintan has a number of things he must do”

1. He must look after Yvonne who was sexually used by one of his priests.

I asked Fintan to care for Yvonne last Monday

“Dear Fintan,

I have kept in touch with Yvonne, Fr Ger Fitzgerald’s ex lover.
She is very afraid just now.
Yvonne is afraid she will be targetted physically.
She has not left home since the scandal broke and is a mental wreck.
I know you are conscious of your obligation in Canon Law to care for the laity.
Could you consider informing the Garda of her vulnerability?
Your brother bishop,

2. He must ask Ger to step aside pending a canonical process.

3. He must look after Ger’s welfare while he is off the mission.

From me to Fintan yesterday morning.

4. He must initiate a canonical procedure against Ger.


Ger should NOT be presiding over public Mass and ceremonies while this cloud is hanging over his head.




The Need for the Spiritual

In the early 1980’s when I was a curate at St. Peter’s Cathedral on Belfast’s Falls Road I paid an evening visit to friends. The wife was a GP and the husband a music teacher.

They happened to be babysitting their four year old nephew whose parents were both actors and taking part in a play in Belfast for a few evenings. The parents were atheists and had not told their little boy much about God nor spirituality.

The little boy was intrigued by my black suit and my clerical collar and immefiately asked me” What are you”?

I told him I was a priest.

He asked: “What do priesters do”?

I told him that we worked for God and said prayers to God and helped people.

He asked me if the key to my church was huge and I told him it was big.

We then went on to discuss Mass and Holy Communion.

After listening to my explanation he suddenly said:

“That doesn’t make sense. The bread becomes his body and the wine becomes his blood. But what do you do with his bones”?

We chatted on for a long time and then his parents arrived home. They were hostile atheists and were not happy to see a priest in the room.

The brought their little boy in his usual treat – a can of Coke and a Mars Bar.

To their amazement he refused his favourite treats.

They ask him why?

He answered: “Because I have been talking to the priester and you always give me food for my body, but you never give me food for my soul”.

There was a very hostile silence and some very hostile stares.

“Out of the mouth of babes….”.