unfit for priestly service

By Diogenes (articles ) | Oct 05, 2005

Archbishop Diarmuid Martin of Dublin is not mincing words about the proposed Vatican statement on homosexual seminarians. In plain, simple language, he told The Tablet: "You don't write off a candidate for the priesthood simply because he is a gay man."

You might think that Archbishop Martin is desperate. After all, he ordained zero new priests this year-- the first year in the history of the Dublin diocese that no priests were ordained.

But No. The instructors who train candidates for the Dublin priesthood are rigorous enough on some issues.

The Irish seminary at Maynooth (which is, these days, the only functioning seminary all of Ireland) recently threatened to suspend 5 young men-- 6.7% of the entire student body-- for a particular form of misconduct.

What was the transgression for which this punishment was threatened? What would cause you to write off a candidate for the priesthood?

Brace yourself. Cover the eyes of the children. OK, ready?

They were kneeling for Communion!

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  • Posted by: - Oct. 10, 2005 7:00 PM ET USA

    Archbishop Diarmuid Martin of Dublin is not mincing words about the proposed Vatican statement on homosexual seminarians. In plain, simple language, he told The Tablet: "You don't write off a candidate for the priesthood simply because he is a gay man." Let me speak without "mincing words" too! Rubbish often proceeds from the mouth of modern bishops who lack common sense, the Faith, or both.

  • Posted by: Andy K - Oct. 07, 2005 11:16 PM ET USA

    Dear Pseudo, The only time a seminarian can legitimately say that is if he is incardinated for the Diocese of Rome. The ordination rite clearly has the soon-to-be priest affirming his obedience to the bishop of his diocese and successors to that office. If he says his obedience is to the bishop of Rome, then he will not be ordained.

  • Posted by: - Oct. 07, 2005 10:34 AM ET USA

    The only reson the walls of Archbishop Martin's seminary are still standing and not shaken to pieces, and the only reason the Archbishop still holds his position of authority MIGHT BE because of the prayers of the five loyal seminarians.It takes only a few holy persons to save a multitude To think that Ireland once produced so many good priests for the Church. This is a sign of how serious conditions are in the Church which needs much prayer and real sacrifices for renewal.May God&Mary HELP US!

  • Posted by: Joseph Paul - Oct. 07, 2005 7:52 AM ET USA

    When the American bishops were given the official recognitio from Rome in relation to their request that communicants stand, it was given on the basis that no one would be denied the sacrament if they chose to kneel. When a priest did deny American communicants in his parish who chose to kneel, Rome (Cardinal Prefect for Divine Worship and Discipline of the Sacraments) wrote to the priest's bishop and ordered him to tell the priest to stop refusing holy communion to the kneeling folk.

  • Posted by: - Oct. 07, 2005 5:57 AM ET USA

    The Irish Bishops conference has not decided that the faithful must or should stand when receiving Holy Communion.Unfortunately most churches have, in a fit of latter day iconoclasm ,had their magnificent altar rails ripped out thus forcing people to stand.Kneeling for Communion is the norm where altar rails remain.

  • Posted by: - Oct. 06, 2005 3:40 PM ET USA

    How dare we Traditional Catholics want to kneel before Christ in the Eucharist as a sign of love and respect for our Lord. I think the Bishop's would prefer that we kneel to them. Tallulah

  • Posted by: - Oct. 06, 2005 2:34 PM ET USA

    This is interesting. The kneelers were exercising "freedom of conscience" just as Thomas More did. Some on this thread want to cut them off at the knees, since More's head has already been offered. Personally, I'd love to watch a seminarian inform a Bishop that his loyalty is to the Pope first. Pan and zoom in for close up to the Bishop. Note the wrinkles on the forehead.

  • Posted by: - Oct. 06, 2005 2:16 PM ET USA

    I would like to add that it is necessary to do what you can when you can to help the Church. At the same time, I must give up some of my own inclinations in order to satisfy the Authority of the Church as given from above. If a religious superior orders me not to kneel during the Mass, or at Communion, I must and will obey him. God knows that I am kneeling in my heart; that I am still, at least inwardly, showing Him proper reverence. Obedience and Love go hand in hand, you can't give up either.

  • Posted by: - Oct. 06, 2005 2:07 PM ET USA

    Actually, AbrahamT, most people don't even know what the word "should" means. It is, in actuality, the present tense of the word "shall". It denotes obligation. Meaning that if it says that someone SHOULD do something, it means that he has the OBLIGATION to do it. But I still agree with you. The fact of the matter is, no one has said whether or not the Ireland Bishops have proclaimed that people need to stand. In America, it isn't clear; they say it depends on the circumstances.

  • Posted by: - Oct. 06, 2005 1:52 PM ET USA

    The case of the seminarians has got a lot of publicity in Ireland.They were not attempting to kneel for the reception of Holy Communion.They were just kneeling for the solemn parts of the Mass.No obstruction was being caused.But it was driving the liturgical commissars of the seminary nuts hence the threats.By the way the wasteland of Dublin has a magnificent seminary building..empty and closed.Are you surprised?

  • Posted by: MM - Oct. 06, 2005 12:30 PM ET USA

    Dear Lord, please save Ireland from her bishops, She's teetering on the brink....and please save orthodox seminarians from their "instruction".

  • Posted by: - Oct. 06, 2005 12:29 PM ET USA

    "You don't use the time of receiving Holy Communion in order to make a statement" And exactly WHO is making a statement? Who is it that is making a federal case of an act of reverence?

  • Posted by: peco - Oct. 06, 2005 12:12 PM ET USA

    I have no obligation to obey that which you have no right to command. The bishop, on his own initiative, does not determine questions of posture. That is the perogative of the bishop's conference with the approval of the Vatican. I believe the GIRM says the bishop is the guardian, steward and defender of the liturgy, not the producer/director. But the ecclesiology of many bishops, their apologists, and other dissenters, is that the bishop is the supreme authority in the Church.

  • Posted by: Sir William - Oct. 06, 2005 11:38 AM ET USA

    "You don't use the time of receiving Holy Communion in order to make a statement" What sort of statement can be gleaned from this? Perhaps-Phil:2:10:That in the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those that are in heaven, on earth, and under the earth: And that every tongue should confess that the Lord Jesus Christ is in the glory of God the Father. or Rom: 14:11... As I live, saith the Lord, every knee shall bow to me and every tongue shall confess to God." What were they thinking?

  • Posted by: - Oct. 06, 2005 10:23 AM ET USA

    You're wrong gairdawg. It's a total failure of leadership on their part. The bishops must first learn to follow before they can be leaders. When the bishops are obedient to Rome and start actually start enforcing Redemptionis Sacramentum, Liturgiam Authenticam, Dei Verbum, Ex corde Ecclesiae then maybe they'd get some respect. They deny a seminarian the Blessed Sacrament because he kneels and yet they have no qualms about giving a notorious pro-abort/pro-homosexual this same Eucharist???

  • Posted by: - Oct. 06, 2005 10:07 AM ET USA

    It is tragic that we live in a Church that continues to penalize both formally and informally traditional piety. I think the orthodox teaching and holy example of our former pontiff, JPII, has bliinded us to a terrible reality--that the Church is in a state of horrific decline still yet. It seems that the Church has a virulent type of "spiritual and moral AIDS", with her own guardians visciously attacking Her faith, Her morals, Her piety, and Her faithful. Her decline continues unchecked.

  • Posted by: garedawg - Oct. 06, 2005 9:29 AM ET USA

    I agree with Andy K. You don't use the time of receiving Holy Communion in order to make a statement. Obedience is more important than whether you stand or kneel.

  • Posted by: Venerable Aussie - Oct. 06, 2005 8:41 AM ET USA

    Archbishop Martin might have ordained zero priests this year, but hey, word is he plans to triple that number next year. Now that's something we can all sing about (with apologies to Chauncey Olcott and George Graff): When Irish knees were kneeling, Sure, was like the morn in Spring. In the lilt of Irish laughter You could hear the angels sing. But now Irish hearts aren't happy, All the seminaries seem pink and Gay. So when Irish knees start kneeling, Sure, the anger's on display.

  • Posted by: - Oct. 06, 2005 7:46 AM ET USA

    Andy K: A key word from RS 90 is the word “should” which is intentionally different than will or must. RS 91 states “…In distributing Holy Communion…sacred ministers MAY not deny the sacraments to those who seek them in a reasonable manner, are rightly disposed, & are not prohibited by law from receiving them”. "...it is not licit to deny Holy Communion to any of Christ’s faithful solely on the grounds, for example, that the person wishes to receive the Eucharist kneeling or standing.

  • Posted by: - Oct. 05, 2005 9:43 PM ET USA

    On the basis of this comment alone, the Abp of Dublin should be removed.

  • Posted by: Vincit omnia amor - Oct. 05, 2005 9:35 PM ET USA

    figures. goes along with my experience seeing pious young men being seen as having a "formation problem" because the make a Holy Hour each day.

  • Posted by: Andy K - Oct. 05, 2005 8:24 PM ET USA

    From Redemptionis Sacramentum: "The faithful should receive Communion kneeling or standing, as the Conference of Bishops will have determined" (90). If the Irish bishops have determined that the faithful are to stand, then the seminarian ought to have stood. This decision was a wise choice for his bishop, to whom the seminarian would have promised obedience.

  • Posted by: - Oct. 05, 2005 7:23 PM ET USA

    I thought it was going to be saying the rosary - here in Los Angeles when we still had a seminary, the gay seminarians were public about going to gay bars but the rosary seminarians met in secret and prayed in small clandestine groups. So, you tell me, just who was and who wasn't in the closet?

  • Posted by: - Oct. 05, 2005 5:45 PM ET USA

    Frank Duff is rolling over in his grave.....

  • Posted by: Fr T (UK) - Oct. 05, 2005 5:36 PM ET USA

    Oh, I thought for a moment that they had been caught wearing a cassock...or displaying a photo of the Pontiff...or reciting the Rosary (These were all regarded as signs of deviancy, along with attempting to kneel to receive Holy Communion, at the seminary that I managed to survive!)

  • Posted by: - Oct. 05, 2005 4:31 PM ET USA

    What posture does an Archbishop assume before the pontiff when he is stripped of his ecclesiastical office? Bonus round: Is the formulary that is pronounced, stripping him of his office, done in Latin?

  • Posted by: - Oct. 05, 2005 4:21 PM ET USA

    The nerve! By their conduct our seperated brethren might get the idea that we worship that little wafer! Definately not ecumenical.

  • Posted by: - Oct. 05, 2005 4:13 PM ET USA

    Is the Holy Father even aware of Abp Martin's dissent? Does anyone at the Vatican even care? Why is this man still in a leadership role within the Irish church? Does he speak for ordinary Catholics?

  • Posted by: - Oct. 05, 2005 3:51 PM ET USA

    If this weren't so sad, it would be funny. Did I wake up this morning in a bad American sitcom?