First Published in ‘The Catholic Voice’, Ireland, September 2016
By Way of the Family
I gave a talk at the Human Life International, ‘By Way of the Family’ conference, on Saturday 24th September. My talk was on the history of contraception in Ireland and the response of the Church in Ireland to it. Whenever someone of faith looks at this history, they will be filled with a deep sadness at the way that the flock of Christ were neglected. The Church authorities turned a blind eye to dissent from magisterial Church teaching on contraception, in what I can only imagine was an effort to make things easier for married couples. But Christ tells us that the Truth is what sets us free and so the hierarchy in Ireland, with one notable exception, enslaved the people entrusted to their care by not upholding and teaching that contraception is intrinsically evil.
The Proper Exercise of Authority
As I said in my talk, “authority, when badly exercised in the Church, causes huge damage to the faith of ordinary Catholics. It undermines the role and the influence of the bishops, it fails to stop dissent in its tracks with the result that dissent tends to spread to epidemic proportions and the ordinary people no longer know what to believe or where to find the truth. Faith becomes a matter of opinion, the concept of absolute truth is abandoned, and the sheep are scattered and left at the mercy of the wolves.”
The Great Apostasy in Ireland
Last year, we saw the sad spectacle whereby one million, two hundred and one thousand, six hundred and seven voters, the vast majority of them baptised Catholics, voted to defy God and to permit men to pretend to marry men and women to pretend to marry women, by way of a constitutional amendment. Our constitution is now a blasphemous document. The preamble to our constitution begins
“In the Name of the Most Holy Trinity, from Whom is all authority and to Whom, as our final end, all actions both of men and States must be referred,..”
Our Blasphemous Constitution
Our constitution now permits men to marry men and women to marry women and this is done in the name of the Most Holy Trinity! The enormity of the offence that this constitutes against God is lost on most Irish people. To enact evil in the name of God is one of the worst offences man can commit and yet, the Irish Nation has committed just such an offence. Back in 1970, when one of the dissenting professors from Maynooth gave a speech in favour of contraception to the Irish Medical Union, the Archbishop of Dublin, John Charles McQuaid, issued a statement that was read out in every church in his diocese. In it he said,
A Curse Upon Ireland
“It may well come to pass that, in the present climate of emotional thinking and pressure, legislation could be enacted that will offend the objective moral law. Such a measure would be an insult to our Faith; it would, without question, prove to be gravely damaging to morality, private and public; it would be and would remain, a curse upon our country.”
This curse remains upon our country to this day and it has been made worse by the fact that our constitution invokes the Most Holy Trinity upon our ungodly laws. I do not know if any of our bishops read my articles but perhaps some readers would make their bishop aware of this article and send them a copy suggesting that they reflect upon it. They would also do well to read the rule of St Benedict chapter 4 with regard to what kind of man the Abbot should be. St Benedict issues a warning to the Abbots, a warning which equally applies to bishops.
The Onerous Task of the Abbot, the Bishop, the Father of a Family
“Let the Abbot be ever mindful that at the dreadful judgement of God an account will have to be given both of his own teaching and of the obedience of his disciples. And let him know that to the fault of the shepherd shall be imputed any lack of profit which the father of the household may find in his sheep.”
Bishops Failing to Curb Dissent
When the majority of the married ‘sheep’ use contraception, when the majority of Catholic voters vote for same sex marriage, when, as a recent survey noted, the majority of Catholic farmers believe in women priests contrary to Catholic teaching and when the Association of Catholic Priests who claim to have over one thousand Irish priests as members laud this fact, these faults will be imputed to the shepherds and rightly so, because the shepherds are not upholding Church teaching on contraception. They permit dissenting priests to have free access to the faithful thereby spreading their lies and heresies. They permit Catholic schools to teach contrary to Church teaching. They permit Catholic organisations such as ACCORD, to teach falsehood to young engaged Catholic couples.
Is This Too Harsh?
Now someone reading this may perhaps think that I am being too harsh. If that is the case then please, please, lead me to the Irish bishop who has publicly corrected our Catholic Taoiseach for his support of same-sex marriage. Show me the bishop who has shown mercy to our Catholic Taoiseach by informing him that, as per Canon 915, he should not present himself for Holy Communion until he has publicly retracted his false opinions and until he publicly declares his acceptance of Church teaching on this matter. Lead me to the Irish bishop who has, within the last ten years, asked all of the priests in his diocese to publicly preach against the use of contraception. Lead me to the Irish bishop who has publicly corrected the erroneous teachings in our so called Catholic schools which now promote same-sex relationships, contraception and other teachings which are contrary to the faith. Please lead me to the Irish bishop who has publicly corrected and taken action to address the problem whereby ACCORD facilitators promote contraceptive practices during pre-marriage courses.
A Catholic Father seeking Help
This is not about bishop bashing. This is about a Catholic father of eight children who is looking for a shepherd to help him to lead his wife and children to heaven. One of my children has already gone astray, please God she will return, but where is the bishop who is standing firm against the forces that lead her astray? I have not seen him in this country of ours. I have not heard him. I have not heard the shepherd calling out to the sheep when LGBT activists took over a Mass in Athy recently and applauded two women who are in mortal danger on account of their fake marriage to one another.
St Maximilian Kolbe calls us to Arms
Are we to give in to despair in this sorry situation that we find ourselves in? Let us listen to the voice of St Maximilian Kolbe who was a Catholic priest during the Nazi persecution.
“In the face of such strong attacks by the enemies of the Church of God, are we to remain inactive? Is that all we can do, complain and cry? NO! Everyone of us has a holy obligation to build a trench and personally hurl back the assaults of the enemy.”
Father’s of Families are the Solution
The solution to the problems we face lies with the fathers of families building a trench in which his family can become holy and prosper for the Glory of God and the building of His Kingdom.
It is not the responsibility of the bishops to guide particular families, nor is it the responsibility of the state, but it is the responsibility of Catholic Fathers to get their Catholic family right. With God’s help, let us do it, and let us begin the transformation so that we can heal this sick society in order that the face of Christ will once again radiate from this once proudly Catholic nation of ours.
© John Lacken 2016
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Author: John Lacken
Founder: Legio Sanctae Familiae – The Legion of the Holy Family