BALLINA, County Mayo, Ireland, June 4, 2015 (ChurchMilitant.com) - In the wake of Ireland's revolution against its once-beloved traditions of family, marriage and faith, in which the Irish people voted to redefine what their government calls "marriage" to include same-sex couples, some Church leaders in Ireland have been issuing tame responses.
The Archbishop of Dublin, reacting to the official announcement that sodomy will be officially incentivized by the state as "marriage," said "I appreciate how gay and lesbian men and women feel on this day."
The Primate of All Ireland, Abp. Eamon Martin, while at times firm in his opposition to state-sanctioned sodomy, nonetheless has distanced himself from other prelates in the Church who have captured the gravity of the Irish revolution.
Cardinal Raymond Burke, former prefect of the Church's highest court, noted how Ireland's situation falls below paganism since pagans never dared deem sodomy compatible with marriage. Archbishop Martin balked, saying, "I wouldn't use that language."
"Throughout the debate and the discussion, we did ask people to try to be respectful and inoffensive in language," Abp. Martin explained.
As these two leaders of the Church in Ireland publicly shy away from the truth in order to appease the hordes of hostile political onlookers, many Irish priests have openly defied Church teaching with regard to the referendum and its result. One openly same-sex-attracted priest praised his country and thanked his parishioners for making him feel "accepted."
Amid such confusion and soft-speak, Fr. Tom Doherty, a recently ordained priest at St. Patrick's Church in Ballina, County Mayo, Ireland, has stood out with boldness. He decided to dedicate his homilies last weekend to calling out members of his parish who voted to redefine marriage in the May 22 referendum.
Father Doherty said the referendum result means "barbarians are at the gate." When the time arrived to recite the Creed, Fr. Doherty reminded those in the pews only to profess the Faith if they "felt the Church had anything to offer."
Many people reportedly walked out.
I drew upon some historical parallels to highlight the importance and the need for mature reflection moving forward. It was also intended as a word of encouragement to those who were demoralized at the outcome of the referendum, and it also was my wish to give a voice to those who felt forced or pressurized by family members into voting Yes at great pains to their conscience and what they held to be true and lasting values for the good of all.
Now, liberal activists are accusing him of verbal abuse, as secular media in Ireland fervently report the story.
According to the priest, "It was meant to invite us all to reflect on how we as a church will find our feet in a rapidly changing society." He says he wasn't condemning anyone in the homilies.