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Irish hierarchy resisting Vatican pressure for diocesan realignments?

Catholic World News - November 16, 2011

The Vatican is considering a reconfiguration of Irish dioceses, while the Irish hierarchy is resisting major changes, according to the Irish Catholic newspaper.

The Irish Catholic reports that an apostolic visitation of the Irish Church, ordered by Pope Benedict XVI in the wake of the sex-abuse scandal there, recommended a reduction in the number of dioceses in the country. Ireland, a country with a population of just over 4.6 million, has 26 Catholic dioceses. The apostolic visitation reportedly concluded that the unusual number of bishops impeded the ability of the Irish hierarchy to take decisive action.

The four archbishops of Ireland have argued against drastic cuts in the number of dioceses, however, the Irish Catholic reports. The archbishops—led by Cardinal Sean Brady of Armagh—argue that a radical realignment would do damage to the historic claims of many traditional churches.

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