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WHERE HAVE ALL THE GOOD PRIESTS GONE – A WELL REMEMBERED PARISH PRIEST OF LARNE.

Archdeacon Byrne of Larne – 1942 to 1961.

I came to Larne in 1984 – 23 years after the death of Archdeacon Byrne and everyone was still talking about him.

He is still spoken of today with great fondness and admiration.

MARY MC AULEY

There was a Catholic parishioner in Larne called Mary McCauley.

After marrying a Protestant she became  every anti Catholic and went to Archdeacon Murphy and told him she had put 20 p in the plate every time she went to Mass.

She then demanded all her money back.

Next day Archdeacon Byrne went to the bank, got a bag full of 20 p’s and brought them to Mary’s house and gave them to her.

THE FAMOUS AMERICANS.

Archdeacon Byrne kept an open door, day or night, to all who needed him.

One evening his doorbell rang and there were two Americans at the door. They had missed their boat and decided as two Catholics they would visit the.local parish priest while awaiting the next boat.

The archdeacon brought them in a made them tea and sandwiches and the three of them had a long conversation.

Weeks later the archdeacon received a letter in the post from the USA with a cheque giving a large donation to the parish.

He was not a man of the world and didn’t realise he had entertained Bob Hope and Bing Crosby.

He had simply treated them the way he treated everybody who came to his door.

WHERE HAVE ALL THE GOOD PRIESTS GONE?

I asked this question of somebody yesterday who has a broad knowledge of the Church and priesthood. His answer took me by surprise – “To the Boilerhouse!

Of course most priests have never visited a gay sauna, I hope.

I live in the diocese of Down and Connor. There is only one priest in the diocese I would trust to go to confession to.

There are just a few priests around Ireland I would respect.

There are probably more I don’t know?

I’d be interested to hear from readers about “good priests” they know, or think they know.

PHONSIE RELEASES NEW SINGLE

99 replies on “WHERE HAVE ALL THE GOOD PRIESTS GONE – A WELL REMEMBERED PARISH PRIEST OF LARNE.”

Archdeacon Byrne and his flock would have faced the most awful sectarian abuse and discrimination in Larne in those years. RIP.

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9:16
Bela Lugosi, the ‘unmarried heterosexual septugenarian’ does not stand with the church.
“The Council is the Magisterium of the Church. Either you are with the Church and therefore you follow the Council, or you interpret it in your own away, according to your desire, you do not stand with the Church.” Pope Francis

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It’s obviously going to be a troll day. I’m just not reading beyond this point.

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Ould Gossip Alert @12:12pm

OMG! Patsy I’m just in, and noticed the unmarried homosexual oul gossip been on attacking me already. As usual the siily oul tout has it wrong, I stand for the constant Magisterium of The Church. I don’t stand for the church of his humbleness oul Fanny, I don’t do heresy.

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Dom Magnus Wilson of Farnborough Abbey was a saint. Very understated wisdom and you left any conversation with him with a numinous impression.
The other trouble is that there is literally no space in the clergy for saints which is why I think nowadays you’re more likely to find them in the pews. I mean in the days when you would have several priests in a parish they wouldn’t all have to be good at everything. For example managing money, committees etc. Perhaps that’s where the good priests have gone, they’ve been chased out by the idea of omnicompetence.

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5.05 The real question though is – do you do Christ? That’s the litmus test. How do you fare?

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12.22
Responding to ACP’s claim that some bishops have banned gay priests:

“Orientation is never a problem, never was…..lifestyle may be.”

Bishop Donal McKeown, speaking on Good Morning, Ulster.

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18 yr olds think they know it all, at that age, they know and still don’t… Bad eggs, no amount of publicity will change your conciense, provided you have one….

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I know a few. We tend to be ill treated by our esteemed but ordinary Ordinary. Similarly the door is kept open, but sadly need to be a little weary of who knocks these days.
Stay positive. God either has a plan or a bad sense of humour. Sometimes I think the the old school good priests (those we always looked up to) are not being replaced by younger models because as a nation we came to idolise priests while all the time telling ourselves we were worshiping God. We got it wrong, we got it very wrong.
I hang, nailed to the cross, approaching death, eyes on Christ, thinking about where I got it wrong – even when trying so hard to get things right. I have learned, but I fear at times that I learned too late. God has been good in helping me learn.

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I don’t think when invited to suggest good and holy priests you’re supposed to suggest yourself 😂

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@10.59,
If you read a little closer you will see I was not suggesting myself as anything but a person who struggles to get it as right as I can – and observing that I am not alone.

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@11:58
‘I know a few. We tend to be ill treated by our esteemed but ordinary Ordinary.’
I know a few and we….
If you don’t mean to suggest yourself try writing what you mean or possibly proofreading.

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Excuse me but what is the definition of a good priest? What are the characteristics of a good priest? Do priests go to confession anymore? I go to a neighbouring diocese for confession. There is no priest in my diocese I would trust. None. I don’t say it out of nastiness. Any good priests I came across during my life either left the priesthood or are dead. That is a lovely picture of Bing and Bob. I won’t be buying the new single. Thanks in advance for answering.

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It’s very simple Agnes.
A good priest knows it’s not all about him and deals with his struggle with celibacy in a way which doesn’t end up on Pat Buckley’s blog.

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Hello anonymous. Thanks for replying but I am not sure what you mean by not all about them ? They will get the hang of celibacy the older they get. We live and learn. Respect
all others. Don’t do anything morally or legally wrong or stupid or behave in a way which ends you up on the internet or in the newspapers or in court. That is a big fat no no. Respect yourself. If you have a problem talk to someone you feel you can trust.
We are all human. Thanks again anonymous.

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11.58: As you know only too well, were you to be a saint ir a priest who does his utmost, there will always be brats at every corner to bring you down. It is very necessary that we recognise our own goodness, qualities and abilities as well as our sins and failings. We are better priests for doing so. We hold ourselves only against the mirror of the gospel not the cynics on this blog.

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There may well still be some ‘good’ priests about. The problem is that these ‘good’ priests, either knowingly or unknowingly, are implicitly supporting and furthering the Catholic Church which has been shown to be wicked in so many areas. Their continuation as implicit supporters is in direct contrast with whatever good they do, and compromises it and them. I do not hear enough priests speaking up about the inherent and ingrained injustices and wickedness within the Church and about its sins – abuse of people, power and authority, misogynistic attitudes, prejudicial attitudes to people of diversity, coverup, lying, financial irregularity, hypocrisy……..the list could go on an on. Other than formulaic utterances of regret that they have been forced to make about such things as the sexual abuse of children by the clerical classes, for the most part these ‘good’ priests just keep their heads down and say nothing, hoping that they can get away with supporting a Church that has so much evil woven in to its very fabric. Such avoidance, besides being selfish and cowardly, definitely taints these ‘good’ priests and and any good that they might do. There is no way that they can get away from that judgement. I would have more respect for them if they did put their heads above the parapet and spoke out. I think the fact that you so rarely see a priest going about publicly dressed as a priest is evidence that they know that they are reviled, and that people know that they are hypocrites not just because of the child abuse scandal but also because they know that these priests are essentially living a lie, supporting something that is wicked while at the same time presenting themselves as ‘good’. The people know it. Do the priests fully get it ?!

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8.31: Do you sir, not get tired of writing this same narrative so frequently? Invariably you express the same opinion at all available opportunities. Try to be a little more elucidating in suggesting templates that may bring about true renewal in the Church. However you try, you will not succeed in heaping barrels of guilt on me nor implicate me in wrong doing of any kind. You give the impression – very wrongfully and unjustly nut insidiously – that we are all supporters of the heinous act of abuse. My conscience is clear re: my response to the awful abuse scandals. God knows, I know and individuals I have helped know my integrity.

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‘To the Boiler House’ the reply says in the article.
Well in relation to that, the reason we have many gay priests is the fault of the way society treated gay men in the past.
No surprise then many joined the priesthood.

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Gay people were treated much worse in the past but Maynooth wasn’t an exclusively gay seminary, as it is now. In fact, the problem in Maynooth in the 70s and 80s was the sems having relationships with female lay students.

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Where have all the good priest gone? Pat, many have died. God rest their goodcsiuls. Many are still living, getting on with their daily ministry, doing their utmost, struggling at times, demoralised by many crises, yet remaining grounded in their prayer, service and dedication. Of course we have the “scandals” which cast huge shadows over our integrity and credibility. I’d like to believe that parishioners who are wonderfully kind are a little more tolerant, merciful and supportive than the critics we find here on a daily basis. Criticisms are necessary but the relentless pursuance of clerics simply for the sake of it is appalling. God bless all clerics: we rely for his grace each day. Today across our country many priests will celebrate Eucharist with parishioners, some with great strength of character and dedication, some will struggle because of personal struggles, others will fulfil their work in fragility because of age…None of us is perfect – far from it – yet it’s with gratitude to God that I face this day with different and changing emotions, questioning and wondering….God be with us.

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The fact you put scandals in inverted commas says so much about your attitude to the victims, or as you would no doubt style it, “victims”. Because “rape” obviously isn’t a problem for you and they were obviously asking for it.
And the reason the “good” priests so quietly get on with things according to you is their “good works” are non-existent.
Now do one, you and your “goodcsiuls”.

Pat if you don’t want this comment please edit rather than binning it, doing all these inverted commas has killed my fingers.

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11.10: Apart from your inability to understand my comment at 9.17, you then rewrite it!! The inverted commas with word SCANDALS is meant to highlight all abuses which are morally repugnant. To contend that rape isn’t a problem for me is utterly , illogical preposterous and ridiculous. Nothing of the kind can be inferred from my comment. I think I’m dealing with someone who has difficulty articulating a cogent opinion or someone who is intellectually challenged. Read my comment earlier with an intelligent frame if possible and you’ll discover the TRUTH of my comment. Good works carried out by clergy: existent: Good priests: existent: Dedicated priests: existent…but I don’t understand your sentence with “goodcsiuls”!!!! A little elucidation maybe on your part!!

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Don’t use inverted commas when you don’t “understand” what they mean. 🤣

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When is a “scandal” not a “scandal” ? When in the public domain for over 35 years.
It’s the public exposure of a CULTURE of abuse, the dark underbelly of the Church,
not a “scandal”. What is genuinely reprehensible is continued covering up and protection
of abusers and those clerics complicit in abuse corruption and crime.

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I am sure “where have all the good priests gone?” has been asked in every generation. Think of those priests in France that succumbed to the ideology of the French Revolution and even crowned a prostitute on the high altar of Notre Dame as the “goddess of reason”. The same in China with those priests that remained hidden and defied the Communist authorities? Was Graham Greene’s “whisky priest” a good one despite his numerous failings? The reality is that the good priests have always been in the minority, with the majority being lukewarm or brazenly sinful.

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Archdeacon Joe Byrne or as he was commonly referred to in Larne as ‘the Canon’ was a real priest of the old school. I can still see him yet out on his bike going around the town. He was held in great respect by townspeople of all denominations.
He was humble, unworldly and would have given the shirt off his back. He was loved by us all and along with his very able assistant, Fr Tom McKillop they run a great parish.
May they both rest in peace.

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Fr David Woodard, former RC chaplain of Eton and late of Northampton Diocese, was saintly. He was from a well known Anglican family, his grandfather had founded the Woodard Schools, and his father was an Anglican vicar in Cambridgeshire. When Fr David became a catholic, his family disinherited him. He abandoned clerical dress and would wear his trademark black trousers, white shirt and white knitted cardigan. Everyone knew he was a priest. He wore simple vestments and refused to have an entrance procession at Mass. He slept in a coffin to contemplate his own mortality, only discovered when he died. The funeral directors insisted on changing the lining as it was well worn.

He believed in simplicity of life, and would ride a bike around the parish. His parishioners gave him an old white mini which he would reluctantly use. He never took holidays, and was always available. dIed in the late 1980s among his parishioners leaving the sanctuary at the end of Sunday mass.

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Why do Priests no longer begin and end their homilies with the sign of the cross. ? I have noticed this especially when attending Mass online during Covid. They just finish their sermon and walk away. I always feel there is something missing

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11.53
Because in the good old pre-Vatican II days the sign of the cross before the sermon was regarded as a tacit indication that the liturgy was being stopped and thereafter resumed with another sign at the end. Today the homily is seen as an integral part of the liturgy.

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No. I’m not

I am not as abstemious as he was and I’m afraid I do enjoy some of life”s nice things.

I do not give all I have to the poor and good causes.

But I have two things in common with him. I have one pair of shoes and my door is open 24/7

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11.26: And I only wear sandals, no socks, no car, have a bike, wear tea shirts, an old coat, the door is always open….am I doing enough? Oh…I live in a caravan style house by choice..have sufficient.

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Nonsense ‘father’ at 6:17, we know you do yourself proud with cufflinks, wine and hand made shoes.

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11.26: Pat, you are right to enjoy life’s pleasures of wine and food and friendships..and to be kind to yourself, in the true sense of self care. Life rolls on too quickly.

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God I wish there were more good priests – hasn’t Tina Beati written a book with this title.
But regardless of how impressive they are they also never seem to disappoint.
Fr Michael Hollings – later accused of sexual assault – cleared by Hume but being cleared by Hume is like thr Yorkshire Ripper being given a reference from Jack the Ripper.
John Powell SJ – loads of books on self improvement posthumously accused of child abuse.
Fr Benedict Groeschel – had to retract statements he made about victims of abuse tempting Father – he was a trained psychologist – very disappointing.
Jean Vanier (not a priest) accused of assaulting 6 women – given living saint status – yeah right.
Fr Eddie Clare – was Director of Maryvale and Vocation Director then just pissed off to live in France – no longer in active ministry.
Kieran Conry – ran communications was bishop – big into evangelism- turns out womaniser with several women in tow.
Good priest – is that even a thing?

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This should have been sent yetserday. Use it how you wish.
UK Catholicism
All of today’s UK Catholics who are descended from those who survived the Reformation fall into 3/4 categories.
Not only did “celibate” Clergy leave no descendants, but not many of them, to their shame, resisted the power of Henry and later Elizabeth.
Some aristocrats first accepted the bribery of wealth in land grants from the Crown and then refused to acknowledge the Church of England with a monarch as its head. They became our wealthy recusant Catholics with many necessary workers/ retainers who followed the same religion as their employers.
Of the people independent of recusant families very few retained their Catholic heritage. There are records of the clandestine visits of Bishops who celebrated the Sacrament of Confirmation and it has been estimated that approximately 2% of the population during the 17th and 18th. Centuries were Catholics.
It was all change at the end of 18th century, however, as the industrial revolution imported “navigators” or the familiar navies particularly from Ireland. Priests came with these as the Penal Laws against Catholics became more relaxed and a new class of Catholic became apparent.
The 19th Century also saw the conversion of many intellectuals and romantics to the attractions of the warmth of the liturgy and its Latin with which many who had been classically educated were familiar. This led to a great surge in church building which has to be addressed as a problem today.
This increase in numbers swelled by economic migrants from Europe continued until the 1950s which saw the apex of all Christian belief in the UK; even the Cup Final was preceded by community hymn singing culminating each year in a rendition of “Abide with Me” which when I think about it today still gives me goose-bumps.
The 1stgroup still possess their own churches or private chapels and are made much of by the hierarchy in this nation which still has an important class system. Their training grounds to educate their children have been served by the revived Religious Orders which had been well respected for their intellectual vigour and temperate way of life. Whether that respect was ever truly earned is now questionable in the light of the revelations of abuse and hypocrisy. Those recusant families are still the posh Catholics although you don’t hear much about them these days. Cardinal Hume was one by adoption and the Irish aping, born in Reading, Blair fawning was another who wanted to be but didn’t quite make it.
The desire for the Latin mass is led mainly by this group or maybe more strongly by the “would be members” of it and no matter their protests, boils down to an elitism that can’t truly believe that Jesus preferred the poor to all the posturing Pharisees who condemned him.
Myself and the majority of Catholics descended from faithful families or Irish and other economic migrants are if we are sincere in our faith, faced with the need to follow the teaching of Our Lord within the Church founded by Our Lord. This Church is steadily becoming more and more irreligious and irrelevant as it makes no effort to attend to the crisis in “Formation”. Known homosexuals are being ordained and sent to minister to us the benighted faithful. Are our Bishops deliberately trying to undermine us? What is more likely, I think is that they are as pathetic and wishy washy as those who appeared for questioning at the Independent Enquiry into Child Abuse.
I will not give up my faith in the words of Jesus “On this Rock etc”. One sentence from the Lord is worth more than a million, including mine, as seen here. The first “Defender of the Faith” was the apostate Henry, will we be given another one?

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“I live in the diocese of Down and Connor. There is only one priest in the diocese I would trust to go to confession to.”
I think that says more about you, Pat. You look at most priests with a jaundiced eye. You’re always the aggrieved one. It always “them’uns” with you.

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Is Brompton Oratory a Traddie 🤔🤔🤔
Found out that late Peter sutherland often went there. It was there that he collapsed as he was brought into hospital.
TLM is not bad but more effacious one. Roche is a successor to Buginni (creator of NO). He is a member of St gallen mafia as he was pulled in by CMOC. Didn’t like Roche as photo tells you a thousand words.
Problem with TLM was too long sermon, long high mass, lace and assortment which gave an impression of the medieval age. Sometimes bit of difficulty of following TLM at times as I tend to get lost there but only for the missal with latin/English that they hand it out.
NO masses opened up a avenue to lot of alternations that can be amended within the mass such as folk dance or shaman dance which create ridicule and laughter. It’s dumbing down of the mass per se. But got healing from NO mass. I can’t rem if I got healing from TLM but very good getting rid of demonic spirits.
TLM wasn’t the language that jesus spoke as it was armanic I think or Hebrew whichever the language that was spoken at that time.
Rcc created a division now since frankie the gaslighter edict/decree. Its them v us (TLM v NO). is that the work of HS🤔🤔. I doubt it much.
Just saw a paper connacht tribune re photo of Duffy and Neary. Duffy smile was very wide as he looked pleased. But I I don’t have time for these bishops whose expertise is cover ups, period. They won’t do it re Tuam babies unless forced by the state.

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I think he may have been suspended for going round saying the pope isn’t the pope as well as spreading dangerous conspiracy theories.

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8:48
You don’t know what you don’t know. The Globalists agenda includes a New World Order, Agenda 2030 and The Great Reset all documented publicly available.
Popes are not in the business of endorsing conspiracy theories. Last week the pope acknowledged the reality of The Great Reset while endorsing it. WAKE UP !!!

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We have a very good priest when he is on form, but get on the wrong side of him, or ask him who is late gentleman caller is every now and again and man gets irate

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3.05: Are you saying that you or others actually ask the priest about a ‘late night caller’? What planet are you living on? Mars? It is absolutely none of your business. My brother in law often stays with me when he travels to Germany as part of his work. He may arrive from the airport very late at night but he has a key. I couldn’t give a monkeys what anyone thinks but in your perverted mind you’d interpret this in a sinister way. You and your stupid ilk are nosey bastardos or bitches. MYOB…

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Why is your so-called brother in law being housed at the expense of your flock? Encourage him to get his company to pay for a Travelodge.

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5.14 pm

Could you use gender neutral terminology please. I thank you.

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Yes as we were concerned it was an intruder. He told us to mind our own businesses and get to bed

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Father, at 5.14, don’t answer this reprobate at 5.42. He or she is taking the proverbial urine. You can be sure certain of one thing: she or he doesn’t give any financial support to their church and is not concerned that your benefactors are losing out because you give accommodation to your brother in law. The biblical value of hospitality takes precedence over a miser’s parsimoneity.

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3.08
The Anglican preaching scarf is black and does not change with the liturgical season. Peter O’Reilly’s is green in keeping with the colour for the 33rd Sunday of Ordinary Time. Is there not a tiny hint of tribalism, as Bede McGregor OP, MA, DD. would say, in your comment?

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Looks more like a green stole than a tippet. Why the RCs need to adorn it with regimental badges seems odd. Keeping up appearances with the established church no doubt.

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I don’t remember ever seeing regimental badges (in this case the Inniskilling Dragoons and the Inniskilling Fusiliers) on a Catholic priest’s stole, especially in NI and even Catholoc military chaplains don’t do it, AFAIK.

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5.42: What’s wrong with you guys? Utterly nonsensical concerns. My sister and her husband (my brother in law) treat me with wonderful respect, kindness and care. I merely return the appropriate kind gesture. You damn plonker. You are welcome to stay over if you wish!! For free. Let me know.

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Is he CRB checked? I thought that was a requirement for frequent presbytery visitors?

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2.44pm

What did. Roches photograph tell you about him?

Could you tell from it that he was a champion ice skater?

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I have to say that Bishop Pats pastoral approach reflects what I identify as resonating with my definition of a good priest – I have never met him but from this blog and from what I observe he’d be the first to reveal or confess his faults and flaws, he has a big heart for the downtrodden and excluded, Jesus is real to him and he sees the priesthood as a way of loving God and serving others and not as a way of lording it over others.

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https://www.manilatimes.net/2021/11/14/opinion/columns/catholic-leaders-have-to-be-defenders-of-children/1822129

Catholic leaders have to be defenders of children
By Fr. Shay Cullen
November 14, 2021

“SHAME, anguish and anger at child sexual abuse in the Church should lead to a devoted commitment to eradicate abuse everywhere. This active stance has to be the primary focus of society and of the Church and every individual member. Jesus of Nazareth said the child is the most important of all. If we continue to fail children, we fail Christ.” “The most recent, shocking exposes and revelations of clerical child abuse in France led to a pilgrimage to Lourdes by no less than clergy to confess incompetence to protect children. What they and clergy everywhere need to do is to surrender their absolute power and invite independent prosecutors to investigate all the priests and lay suspects against whom credible allegations have been made. The culture of silence is the shield of the abusers.” “The time has always been here for the good clergy to take a stand against the cover-up and shame brought upon their vocation and life’s work. They are being unjustly and wrongly smeared with the crimes of the few who are protected. That deference and protection should end.”

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Does a parish priest occupy a presbytery under a mere licence to occupy, I.e as a lodger, an assured freehold tenancy or does he acquire protected rights after a certain period in occupation?

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A PP occupies the presbytery for the term of his appointment.

I occupy my presbytery with the full permission and consent of the diocese.

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6.42: The house provided for priests belongs to a Diocesan Trust. For as long as a priest is in a parish his home is the house provided by the Diocese. In our Diocese the priest pays all service providers out of his salary. We don’t have a mortgage. But our tenure may be 3/4/5/6/7/8 years depending on the appointment given. Since I have good carpentry and artistic skills I usually maintain the house in good condition. Pat is blessed because he has his house for life with the arrangement of The D and C Diocese. Thank God for the OAP benefits…

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I wouldn’t worry about the money. It’s the bishops’ choice to keep those huge buildings and tie up priests in seminary formation and employ a host of laypeople. It’s not as though there were hundreds queuing for his place in seminary.

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7.22 pm
What an absolute farce! All that time and effort spent in six years at seminary and after one year – gone!
Well that was pointless wasn’t it.

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The PP of Enniskillen is more Anglican than Catholic………spends more time in the CofI cathedral than in his own church. What’s that all about?

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So this guy was PP 1942 to 1961. Different times. No social media, no bitching on blogs, people believed in redemption and hell.

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Anon.@ 4.27pm
Inniskilling Dragoons and Inniskilling Fusiliers.- may I ask you what planet are you on? You haven’t a clue as regards spellings.

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