Posted by FatherTim at 8/24/2009 2:54 PM EDT
My friends,

One of my heroes in the Irish Catholic Church -- or he was, until he was "reassigned" to France in a rare example of how the Church can move very quickly when it suits its purposes, in this case, to silence a critic -- has popped up in the news again.

Fr. Adrian Troy, who became legendary in The Troubles as a parish priest at Holy Cross in north Belfast, and who famously walked with schoolkids in the bullet-riddled Ardoyne past a violent Protestant protest, has called on the Church to halt the recruitment of new priests until it addresses Ireland’s clerical child abuse scandal.

Accusing the Irish Church of “a wholly inadequate response to the horrendous abuse that has been uncovered, Fr. Troy said it must take "radical action rather than engage in window dressing,” and said it should ask the Pope to visit Ireland to publicly apologize for the destruction of children's lives.

Well said!

Of course, after penning my own deed of blood on this subject earlier, how could I disagree? Although perhaps it might be better to accelerate the recruitment of new priests as well as the retirements, or criminal trials if appropriate, of many of the older ones whose souls are tainted with this unholy scandal.

Since the release in May of the shocking Ryan report -- which revealed that thousands of Irish children had suffered extreme physical and sexual abuse over decades in institutions run by Catholic religious orders -- the Church has barely moved. I don't think there were many progressive Catholics -- or perhaps any Catholics -- who saw Benedict as much of a leader, but few imagined he would become the bejeweled paperweight he is now.

"Nero XVI" fiddles in Rome while his Church burns.

Please, join me in prayer that Our Loving Father and His Holy Spirit will swiftly intervene in this sad spectacle and rescue what was once such a cherished and integral part of Irish life!

God bless you all!

-- Father Tim