Article Category: Church Structural Policy

The Catholic Church, the State and Society in Independent Ireland, 1922-2022

Irish women challenged the patriarchal nature of Irish society and traditional Church teaching on birth control and on the natural role of woman as mother and home-maker. Inglis contends that the Irish mother played a vital role in the development and transmission of Irish Catholicism from generation to generation. Once women were able to access alternative sources of power through the workplace and public life, a key pillar of the Church’s ideological control was removed.

Sustaining Work, Prosperity and Fairness.

The social partnership process emerged in Ireland at a time of crisis and has been closely associated with recovery and transformation in the Irish social economy.  The names of the six social partnership programmes of the past sixteen years suggest some of key concerns  of the time  – recovery, progress, work , competitiveness, partnership, prosperity,… Read more »

The Challenges Facing the Church in Ireland in the Aftermath of the Ryan Report

The mission of the Church in every age and context is to proclaim the Good News of Jesus Christ. The Church always needs to be prepared to read ‘the signs of the times’ and to enquire how it can renew itself to be faithful to that mission. The Ryan Report published in May 2009, the Ferns Report published in 2005, and undoubtedly the issues which will emerge from the report into sexual abuse in the Archdiocese of Dublin, raise very serious challenges for the whole People of God in Ireland now and in the immediate future.

Pedro Arrupe: Inspirational Jesuit Leader

Introduction Does it seem strange that the role model for a centre for business ethics and for a hostel for the homeless is the same person? The centenary of the birth of Pedro Arrupe has brought new interest in his life and work, which are being celebrated and commemorated this November, especially in his native… Read more »

What is Development? Promoting the Good of Every Person and of the Whole Person

The year 2007 marked the fortieth anniversary of the publication Populorum Progressio (The Development of Peoples), Pope Paul VI’s encyclical, and the twentieth anniversary of Sollicitudo Rei Socialis (The Social Concern of the Church), the encyclical issued by Pope John Paul II.1 In my view, commemoration of documents written many years ago is worthwhile only… Read more »

Asking the Right Questions: Christians, Muslims, Citizens in Ireland

Our neighbour, eight-year old Muhammad, arrived at the front door on Hallowe’en night in the guise of Darth Vader; he was flanked by two other children from the road, disguised as a pirate and the devil. Later, his eleven-year old sister, Selma, arrived on her own, gorgeously dressed as a witch. As they departed with their trick or treat goodies, I recalled the words of President McAleese, addressed to Muslims in Ireland at the tenth anniversary celebrations of the Islamic Cultural Centre in Clonskeagh, Dublin: ‘Your being here helps us and keeps challenging us to find ways to be joyfully curious about each other … we, I hope, will try our best to make Ireland a country of real welcome and a country of celebration of difference …’1 Are the President’s words realistic or are they naïve? I want to explore the kinds of questions we need to put to one another as Irish citizens so that obstacles to the realisation of the President’s hopes can be overcome.

And so this is Christmas…?

Amidst the hustle and bustle of Christmas many people find themselves drawing breath now and again and wondering what it is all about. On the one hand, there is the exhilaration of the ‘season of goodwill’, the decorations and seasonal music to brighten all our lives, the getting together with friends or colleagues or family,… Read more »

Issues of Justice, Leadership and Authority in the Church

The church has a long tradition of engaging with issues of social justice. We have come to expect that it will be an advocate for the disadvantaged and those excluded or on the edge of society and will criticise structural injustice wherever it comes to light. The recent uncovering of injustice of the most appalling… Read more »