A HOMILY delivered at Knock shrine by the Bishop of Raphoe, Philip Boyce, is being investigated by the Director of Public Prosecutions following a formal complaint by a leading humanist who claims the sermon was an incitement to hatred.
The gardai have confirmed to former Fine Gael election candidate John Colgan that they have prepared and forwarded a file to the DPP after he made allegations that the address by Dr Boyce was in breach of the Prohibition of Incitement to Hatred Act, 1989.
The homily, entitled: "To Trust in God" was delivered to worshippers during a novena at the Marian shrine in Co Mayo last August and subsequently reported in the media, including The Irish Times, under the headline: "'Godless culture' attacking church, says bishop."
Mr Colgan, a retired chartered engineer and economist from Leixlip, Co Kildare, referred in his formal complaint to two key passages in Dr Boyce's homily which he believes broke the law.
One of the passages referred to the Catholic Church in Ireland being "attacked from outside by the arrows of a secular and godless culture".
A second passage, which was included in the complaint, stated: "For the distinguishing mark of Christian believers is the fact they have a future; it is not that they know all the details that await them, but they know in general terms that their life will not end in emptiness."
Mr Colgan, who was a leader in the 'Campaign to Separate Church and State' in the late 1990s, said in his complaint: "I believe statements of this kind are an incitement to hatred of dissidents, outsiders, secularists, within the meaning of the [Incitement to Hatred] Act, who are perfectly good citizens within the meaning of the civil law. The statements exemplify the chronic antipathy towards secularists, humanists etc, which has manifested itself in the ostracising of otherwise perfectly good Irish citizens, who do not share the aims of the Vatican's Irish Mission Church."
More @ http://www.independent.ie/national-n...y-3003057.html
Surprised this has not popped up here yet. I think it's a stupid thing to do. It is a waste of taxpayers money having it "investigated" and frankly an embarrassment to the humanist community of Ireland. I mean, this plays into the exact stereotype those on the religious right would like to portray athiests as: people who try get in the way of their "faith" and how they practice it.
I agree the Bishop seems a bit of a headcase and what he said was wrong, but they are doing to do nothing other than make him surer of his convictions that Catholicism in Ireland is under attack.
Sometimes I wonder if there is room for a new religion called "common sense"...
What do you all think?