Controversial Irish journalist John Waters is said to have equated repealing the eighth amendment and Nazism.

Churchgoers in Limerick were moved to walk out of Mass this weekend following comments from controversial Irish journalist John Waters which allegedly drew parallels between the repeal of the constitutional ban on abortion in Ireland and the Holocaust.  

Waters, a pro-life campaigner, had been invited to speak at three services at Our Lady of the Rosary Church, Ennis Road, by parish priest Fr Des McAuliffe but some parishioners were so appalled by his comments, they walked out. 

“He drew parallels between repealing the eighth amendment and Nazism – referring to Auschwitz and the Holocaust. That was the most frightening part,” one parishioner told the Limerick Leader.

“He also said ‘it’s one thing for people to not believe in God but when, in fact, they think they are God dangerous things begin to happen.’”

Read more: John Waters calls media coverage of Tuam scandal “a hoax”

John Waters (right) with pro-Brexit campaigner and former UKIP leader Nigel Farage. Image: RollingNews.ie.

John Waters (right) with pro-Brexit campaigner and former UKIP leader Nigel Farage. Image: RollingNews.ie.

“There was no mention of the woman, no mention of crisis pregnancies, no mention of compassion, nothing like that. There was no mention of how hard it can be for people. It was all very polarising.”

Fr McAuliffe denied that Waters compared the repeal of the eighth amendment to the Holocaust, however.

“I can’t remember any reference to the Holocaust or anything like that. I was there for two of them (Masses) and I don’t recall any such reference personally,” he said, defending his decision to invite Waters to his parish.

Read more: Cillian Murphy urges men to vote in Ireland's abortion referendum

“We have a pro-life group in the parish and he was giving very much a pro-life message which the Church is entitled to do and is obliged to do really and I didn’t think there was anything (in what he said) that people would take exception to.

“He spoke at all three Masses and I would have thought it went on very favorably. I did not feel there was anything objectionable and I don’t think there was anything contentious in what he said. He just explained what’s facing people who will be voting shortly - in language that people understand,” Fr McAuliffe added, stating that he had not received any complaints about his attendance.

Another former parish priest Fr Tom Ryan added that he would be surprised if there were any complaints made about Waters’ comments.

“A lot of people came up to talk to him afterward and I imagine they were positive the ones who came up,” he said, claiming he didn’t see anybody leaving the church.

What do you make of Waters' alleged comments? Should he have been invited to speak at the church? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section, below. 

Read more: Irish saints once carried out abortions, thought oral sex was worse

Irish writer John Waters. RollingNews.ie