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MY SEVEN PARISH PRIESTS.

A priest reader in the past few days has asked me to write about all the PPs I served under.

CANON PHILIP DWYER

Philip was my PP in St. Cadoc’s Llanrumney in Cardiff where I served as a Deacon in 1975.

He was a wonder friendly and caring man and I loved my summer with him. He was also privately very wealthy and generous.

He led a group of parishioners from Llanrumney to my ordination in Waterford in 1976.

FATHER BERNARD DRISCOLL

Bernard was my PP in my first curacy at Bridgend in Wales. In spite of his name he was hugely anti Irish. When I mistakingly called him O’Driscoll he screeched: “Drop the fucking O, sonny”.

He was known as a “curate breaker” and ife in the presbytery was horrific. He was a very heavy drinking alcoholic. He loved to remind me that I came from: “Dirty Dublin”. He was quite sadistic. I only stuck it for 3 months.

CANON EDDIE MULLINS

He was my PP in Briton Ferry near Swansea. He was also Cardiff diocesan treasurer.

For most of my time there he was very kind and good. Our friendship hit a rock when I fell foul of his longtime housekeeper.

He was a keen golfer, a big drinker and did not believe in celibacy in a heterosexual way.

He was promoted to a bigger parish. He only had a curate in Briton Ferry because.of his diocesan job. The new PP was full time and I was an unneeded extra.

CANON PATRICK CREED

This Tipperary man was my PP in St Teilos Parish Cardiff.

From the first day I met him he indicated that he neither wanted me in his parish or liked me. Like Driscoll, he made life in the presbytery unbearable.

By this time I had wearied of the dictator PP type that Irish priests going to work in England and Wales encountered.

We were unwelcome lodgers in THEIR presbyteries and bullied and intimidated from Day One.

The housekeepers were loyal to the PPs and resented having to look after curates.

Many Irish priests across the water coped by turning to alcohol and lived in a semi sober state until they got parishes of their own.

Living away from family and friends was ery lonely.

FATHER VINCENT MC KINLEY

Vincent and I were the best of friends for my first year in St. Peter’s, Belfast.

We travelled to clergy dinners and funerals together.

He invites his priest friends to come and hear me preaching.

When he broke his knee on the golf course I gently massaged healing oils into his knee every evening.

The one day he called me into his room and said: “Joe McGurnaghan is the senior curate here and he resents our friendship and all we do together. From now on we will have to be less close friends”.

And that’s what happened.

By the way Vincent was absolutely heterosexual – as the parish women and girls of St Louise’s college found out with their hips being touched and their bums pinched.

Sr Genieve banned McKinley from St. Louise’s.

Genieve was a Maggie Thatcher. Her and I got on very well. I lunched with her many days in the school.

My last four years in St Peters was wonderful people wise and hell presbytery wise. McKinly physically assaulted me.

CANON WALTER LARKIN

Walter Larkin, feared by St Malachy students and curates was my PP in Kilkeel.

Our first meeting:

WL: Well Buckley, what do you think of.me?

PB: I don’t know you Walter but I have heard you are very difficult to work for.

WL: Have you now? And I have heard that you are very disobedient? Do you know all the priests are waiting for us to fight?

PB: No but I’m not surprised.

WL: (stretching out his hand) Let’s fool them and be friends.

And so we’re were.

We worked well together and had long talks about theology and especially the “Last Things”.

He was afraid of going to hell.

I visited him on his deathbed and he asked me for a blessing.

FATHER PADDY MC VEIGH

Was my PP in Larne.

He was kind and good and generous.

I had no.problems with him.

Paddy himself had been a bit of a “rebel curate” in his own time.

He had a hate/hate relationship with the vicar general Monsignor Patrick Mullaly to saw to it that he never became a PP in his time.

The day Daly sacked me Paddy came to my house, shook my hands and said: “I wish I had your balls”.

I am very glad to have lived awY from other priests for the past 38 years.

But I don’t forget those priests who were kind to me.

167 replies on “MY SEVEN PARISH PRIESTS.”

Pat I’m so sorry you suffered so much with your parish priests, the one we have is a raging gambling alcoholic and does not see the wrong in his ways

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The good news is that the Good Ones outnumbered the Bad Ones on a 15-9 rugby scoreline. The bad news is that one bad one is one bad one too many. 9! ☹️
People’s relationship with the community will influence them. Those encountering the bad. ☹️ Those encountering the good have an experience of a completely different community.
Families have problems. Communities also have problems. Only the Anti-Catholic Brigade (ACB) are claiming to be perfect.
Pax.

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No one is claiming to be perfect. The clergy claimed to be morally superior for generations while covering up criminality and protecting criminals.

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Times change but clergy don’t, how many Pp still hit the drink hard every night? Their beetroot red faces giving away their high blood pressure and love for the bottle. Sad really as they are lonely

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9:32, it is very sad to hear of the addictions that some people are inflicted with. If people could drink no more than a hemina, society would be a better place.
The history and evolution of the Lenten season is there for everyone to read up on in their own time. It is a good time for people to stop drinking. The money they save can be given to charity. Reading a chapter a day then of the gospels of Matthew and Mark would complete a great Lenten season of abstinence, almsgiving and prayer for these people.
Pax.

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People who are misusing alcohol to dangerous shouldn’t be advised to stop suddenly. Alcohol withdrawal can be fatal and it has to be done with medical advice/medication. Be careful with your advice, Seamus.

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Have you seen the video from a funeral last week from Corpus Christie? Where the priest allowed a coffin draped in a tri colour to be danced around by a handful of women singing along to the song ‘my boy lollipop’? Is this seriously how funerals were intended to be held or is Fr McCafferty that far gone that he doesn’t realise a mockery he has been made?

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Saw the video. It’s doing the rounds. Big Mac milks his ‘victim status’ for all he can and thinks it gives him the right to do whatever he wants. A tragic, confused character.

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How do I send it to the blog Pat I’ve tried but it does not give me much options. The residents in the local street were disgusted at this farce, and will be writing to Bishop Treanor to have him removed as this is the latest in a string of issues with him. Anything for publicity, between social distance blessings in the street, confessions in shopping centres and even him parading around in that mini ‘pope’ mobile he was driving

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That was a joke they were dancing round the coffee holding lollipop confetti sticks like nursing home residents, sure remem before Covid he allowed all mourners at a funeral dress up in tiger outfits or have their faces painted as tigers in tribute to Tony ‘tiger’ Taggart. That’s making a mockery of the church, yet the priest in poleglass wouldn’t even allow me to have my da in the church overnight on the day of his funeral, how are these double standards fair practice?

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The lady whose funeral was taking place was a great local character and her family didn’t want it to be a totally sad occasion. My boy lollipop was outside the chapel grounds after the mass was over. Nothing to do with the priest or the chapel.

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Nonsense. Whoever you are, you don’t know what your talking about. Sure it was a man’s funeral but I respect his family to much to give his name here.

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Pat, you had some very difficult encounters. You have survived. I suspect that your own personality was a contributory factor. When we were the “young ones” just out from seminary, the ones in power very often resented us. There was a real hierarchy which was often intimidating, thus creating tension and conflict. You had to stand up to some P.P’s. I did – but overall in my first 12 years I encountered just one or two awkward men. Mostly my experiences with colleagues were/are good. Now that we are pretty much akine, we’ve no ine to fight with!!!

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The priests we have in our parish are seemingly in a power struggle but they respect the parishioners. They don’t struggle with alcohol or anger as far as we are aware but they seem to struggle with food, when will food addiction be genuinely considered a mental health issue like every other addiction?

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You can’t be seen dancing in the Yumbo centre in a mankini and chuckling like a farmer and not expect to be exposed

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He ought to be ashamed of himself taking money from dying peoples wills who he has no real connection with, if only that woman could see what he does with the money she left him, dinner parties with daisy chain ni, parties in Yumbo, expensive clothes and jewellery and the richest of food that has given him painful gout for his troubles

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In my ignorance who is the ‘big priest’ accompanying Stephen? Is he D&C? Do they hunt together? Like Stephen and Greg, in the past? I suppose GC is somewhere to celebrate one queen to another

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How long can Rory hold his silence about Daisy Chain NI? Was that his last funeral last week? Is his next wedding indeed his own to his lover who is 2 decades his youth?

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I agree, age is not even a number when it comes to love, I use to pick my now husband, from school when he was 17 and I was 31 and we are still together now, 8 years later.

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My mum was 39 years younger than my dad and even though he always seemd like more of a grandad to us, thry were great together. She was a long time widowed though

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Think thats bad? After he became a widower my dad married a girl who was three years younger than me. It stoll grosses me out even though I’ve tried to accept her.

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The PP in my parish is the boss. His way or no way kind of person. He enjoys the drink as he regularly preaches about his favourite white wine – all while the curate is trying to get dried out.

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All the priest from years ago were cranky old alcoholic bastards. The ones now are airy fairy horny closeted queens

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Yes, a lot of younger ones in the closet but they don’t have alcohol issues like in the past. They merely wear designer clothes, skimpy underwear and fool around!

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They were always horny but just too hungover to act on it, clergy are scrutinised too much now to be alcoholics

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10 12: All – a great exaggeration of course. A mighty lie. Some were, many were pioneers. But sure isn’t telling lies a fab hobby?

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Fr. Creed, your PP in Cardiff, is obviously the uncle of Fr. Pat Creed Killaloe diocese…….looks so alike.

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The great Chinese prophet Pei Wie Shi once said that ‘’wisdom from man old, should be wisdom take on board, but true wisdom is to make own mind’’

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The prima donna new priests coming out of seminaries these days won’t put up with a bossy and domineering parish priest. They just claim intimidation and bullying, and move on. Their main pre-occupations, however, once ordained are to get their suite of rooms (and it has to be a suite) redecorated and furnished to their taste and to the parish’s expense, favouring top end shops and decorators. And, then to make sure that their wardrobe of clerical garb and accoutrements is up to standard length of lace, quality of brocade etc. Then they are all set to be the ontologically changed, unassailable, unaccountable, know it alls of the parish.

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Exactly you are right all of the next generation are so touchy and you can not look at them a certain way or the PC brigade will sue you for defamation

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At least ya all have a parish priest, we have been left with none, so well done Bronagh and Co for all the damn yapping ya done over the years about Delia and Fr Keenan, now that he’s retiring on medical grounds we will not have a Pp and you are all to blame for this, shame on the lot of you

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10.43: You seem to perfectly fit your description of prima donna!! Love to see your wardrobe….you seem very well informed.

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Wrong. I’m a Gap chinos man, or Levi jeans man, and T shirt. No clerical garb. From the pews. No fancy vestments. Just what I observe amongst the young clergy who populate my big and busy city parish. We have 2 young curates, ordained in the last couple of years. Full of themselves. Probably a bit shocked by people like me who are prepared to take them on and question their nonsense. They may have ontological change on their side, but I’m the one who pays the money to keep them in the style to which they are rapidly becoming accustomed. So, I reckon I have the right to ask the awkward questions and to prod and test them. But, they don’t like it up ’em, as Cpl Jones used to say. Or maybe they do…..?! I wouldn’t be surprised watching the swishing hips as they go up the aisle.

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1.07: What a fantasy of an imagination! The fact that you have noticed “swishing hips” shows your level of participation at the Eucharist. Not CHRIST-FOCUSED. No. Truth is you probably lust for what you see…pervert.

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I have a similar experience to your own, Pat. I try and remember the kinder one’s and learn from the crazies, as in make sure I don’t end up like them. I would also say that I have worked with some nuns who were also certifiably crazy, vicious, bitter, power mad old bitches. I feel sorry for the good sisters having to suffer them. Did you see the article in The Tablet on spiritual abuse?

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Pat. Please say a prayer for me. My wee dog died this morning. My heart is broken. They really sre family and I had him g
For 16 years. Hopefully he’s now crossed the rainbow bridge and met my wee cat again. Why do people think animals don’t go to heaven? Pray for me pat x

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Jenny. So sorry to hear this and i will pray for you too. People are so dismissive of pet owners but unless you have a pet you can’t understand the pain. I knowbit mightn’t seem the same but i have tropical fish and I’m really attached to them. People can laugh all they want but i have names for them and they have great little personalities. There’s a reason why they’re called angel fish: i hope if i go to heaven, the skies of heaven are decorated with the luttle colourful fish that brought their owners such happiness on warth. God bless you Jenny.

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12:34 The clerical brotherhood is a “community” within the Catholic Christian community.

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10:15am
Seamus, your a great man for stating the obvious.
Peoples’ upset is justified considering the covering up of criminality among the brethren.

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Unfortunately the priesthood attracts some people who were a bit reclusive in their schooldays because they didn’t “fit in” with the other kids. Once they have attained their PP status they become mini dictators and try and use their new found status to throw their weight around. They see parishes as “theirs” and set about making it their little fiefdom . Any new cc coming in is soon aware that it is the PP’s way and no other way.

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Bill it was always my old Pp way until I found him in bed with the female housekeeper and it was all my way from there.

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My aunt Mary wad a housekeeper for an alcoholic priest and she found him
In bed with a nun and she was his second cousin. Pure disgusting do it was

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Quite the same for us religious priests too Pat. You love to a new community and the superior might be a bollix, or he’s pleasant and you spend a few pleasant years there doing your bit. In a larger community when numbers were greater years ago it was easier to fade away into the background to avoid a narky old drunk of a superior; not so much these days.

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Isn’t it very easy to be a keyboard critic. I wonder if priests who worked with Pat would have different stories to express. We can all be very awkward when it suits us. Sometimes in the past we ended up sharing a presbytery with 2/3/4/5 others – all different personalities, little personal space, nowhere for family to be entertained, crazy dynamics, overpowering housekeepers.. Who the hell could possibly survive as a normal, good human being in these conditions? It was not a healthy environment. Pat, like many newly ordained in the 70’s and 80’s were thrown into the almost intolerable situations and being young and inexperienced, were bullied and harrassed. I got over one such episode by calling out the persons involved. My Bishop listened carefully. Mostly my experiences with colleagues were and are reasonably good, now that I’ve lived on my own since the late 80’s…

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There should be no incensing in churches during the pandemic. It has the tendency to make people cough and for the virus to spread to those around.

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1.36: What did you expect them to do? A riverdance jig to the altar? You laptop idiot. We’re these men to act foolishly you’d condemn them. Go back under your duvet. Plonker.

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Historically the RCC is a circus, most priests are clowns, some like to juggle many things, some like to disappear, some like to play with fire, some like being in cages and some love being ring leaders

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It’s plausible deception was exercised against various authorities; please pray hard for all involved living and passed on, and honest media.

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I’m looking forward to this one exploding – especially as the then vicar general was clearly set up to be fall guy for Pope Hitler Youth. Does the vicar general actually hold that authority? No, of course not, he is only deputed to exercise the bishop’s authority.

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Pat some very interesting questions here today. Would you consider doing a blog on animals and the afterlife? They are god’s creation and i think many of us would be consoled to think we will be reunited with them in heaven.

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No time. I’m taking my cat to the vet this afternoon. She has a wee digestion issue x

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Course they have souls. Did you never hear it said- the eyes are the mirror of the soul? If you look into a cow’s eyes you see depth, serenity, dignity. How could they not have souls, such beautiful creatures.

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Yes Pat, including caged circus animals or animals abused or exploited for profit. After all animals were created by God.

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Wasn’t Canon Eddie Mullins the brother of th Bishop Mullins of Menevia diocese? Did his brother visit him much? Was canon Dwyer related to Archbishop George Patrick Dwyer of Birmingham?

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Why on Earth does Antrim born Fr Eugene ONeill sound like he’s English? We all know he is a monarch loving British unionist like his great clergy pals and their MBE’s but at least they kept their natural accent.

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Pat, I’ll give you a good wee laugh. I was shopping in Belfast before Christmas with my elderly mum, she’s 83 but great for her age. She got all excited as she thought Phil Schofield was beside us in the queue in House of Fraser and was telling him she watches this morning every day and that she loves Holly Willoughby, when in actual fact we were standing beside one of the singing priests Fr OHagan but with a mask on and the grey hair it was very deceiving but he did see the funny side of it.

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It was said in Maynooth in the 1980’s that some of the D&C and Dromore students were Unionists. I found it hard to believe then.

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Yes, some were unionists. Some of them tried to get mainland and NI newspapers bought for the common rooms in additition to the three Irish dailies, but as the papers were paid for by the students, the IRA-loving sems from Raphoe, Cork & Ross and Kerry vetoed it.

Personally, I thought that the Irish Times had no place in the seminary common rooms, given its anti-Catholic views and anti-Catholic employment practices.

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Of course they’re not allowed to and of course like the rest of the church’s teaching around sex (contraception and abortion not excluded) it is completely ignored. Next you’ll be making out that any priests or laity believe in God! Hint: actions speak louder than words.

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No, priests may not masturbate under any circumstances. It breaks their promise of celibacy (or vow, in the case of religious).

In fact, the view of Saint Thomas Aquinas (thus one having considerable weight in the Roman Catholic tradition) is that masturbation as a serious sin against nature and thus a serious sin against nature’s Creator, in a way that illicit vaginal sex with a woman — even if through adultery, prostitution, or rape! — is not.

(And the Cathbots wonders why people don’t trust the RCC over sexual questions?)

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7.27
The reception (more correctly, the lack of reception) of that position on masturbation by Christ’s faithful makes it clear that it is wrong.

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9.27
It isn’t you who decides that.
And if you had been correct you would have deprived close on 100% of the membership of the People of God of their baptismal birthright.

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Please pray for Fr Jim Doherty , a retired priest and great character of the Glasgow Archdiocese who died yesterday. May he rest in peace and rise in glory.

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5.13: Remember your own failings and moral misdemeanours before condemning a man who has justified. Not even an offering of sympathy or a prayer for his family. This is heartless and not CHRIST behaviour. My God!

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@ 7:20

I was right Patsy its not Hilarium it should be Hilarious. Use of capitals and the false piety gives her away. Remember to double check any gossip from that quarter.🙄

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Not gonna lie, my thoughts on reading that were that a kiddy fiddling priest might as well be supported by a cathbot than anyone else. they’ve been supporting them for years anyway.

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Re Fr Eugene O’Neill. This is all part of his act. He is a social climber and a British monarch toasting one at that. Good friends with the previous British ambassador to the Holy See – Francis Campbell . O’Neill could hardly turn up to diplomatic parties with his Antrim accent. Oh no. That wouldn’t do. So he reinvented himself as a posh intellectual. In other words he’s a phoney

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Are u not mixing him up with a Paisley priest another Jim D who is allegedly a member of that romantic ensemble?

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Nope. Eugene O’Neill was the diplomatic party going social climber. He subsequently gave an interview basically dissing republicanism and where did the bishop of bling send him? The republican New Lodge, a community which suffered immensely at the hands of the monarch he was toasting’ soldiers. He is a sorry sort of deluded fool who is trying to ingratiate himself with the establishment. No time for the hoi polloi this guy

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4:03pm. Isn’t it ironic that the warbler O’Hagan can shop in House of Fraser at Christmas whilst many D&C parishioners had to avail of food banks and charity donations from the likes of SVDP. Here is a man who calls himself a shepherd of Christ. Was he wearing his MBE on his coat? Meanwhile counsellor McCusker and his volunteers were practicing true Christianity by seeing to the needs of the impoverished. You just couldn’t make this up. A church hierarchy in D&C of bloody hypocrites. A bunch of balloons. Yet the sheep still follow them

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7.17
New Year’s resolution: put the idiom ‘You could n‘t make it up.’ in cold storage for 2022.
Carrauntoohil is so steep you couldn’t make it up.

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Pat, anymore word on the rumoured D&C moves and has Rory Sheehan actually gone. No updates of the D&C website

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Fr Doherty was not part of the Glasgow Daisy Chain and had little time for the senior Priests of Diocese. He was outspoken about how they conducted themselves and they were scared stiff of him! He retired early many years ago as he had leukaemia and was very weak. He died at the weekend in the Hospice fortified by the rites of the Holy Mother Church. He was in his 60’s. He was a great preacher, a true pastor, a friend to those in need and and he will be a great loss. Even in retirement he helped as much as he could. One of the few clergy you’d struggle to find anyone say a bad word about. Years ago he took a Parish over in Carmyle, a run down area of Glasgow. Within weeks he put a huge banner up around the Church reading “Smile, you’re in Carmyle”. His approach and engaging style increased attendance by over 50%. May he rest in peace and rise in glory.

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Oh just curious my friend. Don’t be so tetchy. Like to keep up with the goings on in my diocese 🤣🤣

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May God rest Fr James Doherty.
Although he was common in his speech, real Glasgow, he was an intellectual giant and carried his learning of church history, theology, the scriptures and Canon Law with consummate ease. Although very gifted he was no academic show off.
He was an exemplary preacher who could connect and engage with any congregation with a down to earth touch. Many of his sermons were a tour de force!
He had a sharp wit and great sense of humour.
Even though he has been retired many years there was a well worn path to his door by those who sought out his wisdom and support, his shrewd counsel and spiritual comfort.
He did not suffer fools or pomposity gladly.
Many Glasgow clergy would complain about the hierarchy behind their backs but be nice in their presence. Not Jim. He called a spade a spade. He called out sham pretentiousness when and where he seen it.
He was dearly loved by many, particularly those suffering loss through tragedy ( his own brother having died in very tragic circumstances) and those inflicted by illness. He knew and could feel their pain. He had walked the walk.
At a time when the activities and behaviours of certain clergy in our presbyterate are coming under focus, not least on this blog, his shining example of what a good caring priest should be will be sadly missed by the thousands he ministered to over the years.
‘Well done thou good and faithful servant’

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8.26 what a beautiful and very moving tribute to Big Jim. You articulated that far better than I ever could. Lovely x

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+Pat,
To what extent were you rejected from presbyteries because the presence of any curate impacted the sex life of PPs and their housekeepers?

The challenge here is an honest look at the reality that it may not have been a personal dislike to you; rather was it a dislike to the presence of any third wheel.

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What I mean, if that I suspect that no matter who arrived as a curate they would be unwelcome… I suspect that the PPs and their housekeepers had nice comfortable arrangements but when you put a third person in the house they will be unwelcome, no matter who the third person was.

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Pat nice to see you on great form. The people of Tyrone send their warmest greetings 🙂👌

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9.13
Was the officiating prelate the same US bishop who received a criminal conviction for failure to report child abuse and who resigned following a Vatican investigation into his tenure as bishop?

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Suspect away@9:51. And that’s a key word.
It is at the core of a significant proportion of N Ireland’s unionist population who cling on to a now forlorn link with the “mainland” of their ancestors’ origins..
A distrust of anything which might threaten a self perceived historical “by rights” supremacy has bred suspicion in those of a “planter” heritage in N. Ireland. This is now much accentuated by the demographic population shifts which inexorably forecast a nationalist N. Ire majority. As those from this background see former political power eroded, not only demographically, but additionally by careless disinterest from their former Westminster political supporters, they resent and react/reject/retreat into the ever smaller corner they’re being painted into: diminishing orange in an ever encompassing green.
We live in interesting times:……those of you on the “mainland”, whichever one!

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Pat did you know Fr Tom Rogers in Waterford? Great photo of him and Abbot Richard on the W&L site at an Order of Malta event in Lourdes

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Big Bill @ 11.30
You have just described our last parish priest, he thought he owned everything & everyone around here, a born interfering bully & an inventive muck raker all done to create distraction to cover up for his own well heeled dodgy circle, he’s gone to a new parish now & same story repeating itself.

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Former PP wrote to the Irish Times to say he’d never go to Archbishop’s House without someone with him, likely as he did not trust +Diarmuit Martin one bit. DM’s go to response in any issue was to sell out the priest or religious. This is a closer to home bullying. Anyone with a bad boss can recognise a bit of it. No wonder +Pat is his own boss.

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I must say Pat you’ve outdone yourself on this one. When you write a balanced post your actually enjoyable to read. It was a pleasant change from the 100% negative and toxic rubbish that’s usually posted. This post actually reads of authenticity. Well done
Pat and keep it up.

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