At last, the Irish Government has put itself at a far distance from the sickening bureaucracy that is the Vatican. For far too much of its history, Ireland has run itself on theocratic lines with despicable and corrupt virgins calling many of the shots.
It may have taken years of fostering and protecting child molesters, but finally Taoiseach (Prime Minister) Enda Kenny has taken a defiant stand against the Vatican. In light of the Cloyne report - which shows how allegations of sexual abuse by Catholic priests in county Cork had been covered up - Kenny has described the "dysfunction, disconnection and elitism" of the Catholic Church.
The condemnation has mainly been met met with praise and support, and thankfully much of this has come from clergy. But not everyone is jubilant about the Taoiseach's comments.
The Church of Columcille in county Louth has distributed a newsletter carrying an article entitled "Heil Herr Kenny". The article claims "The last European leader to make such a blistering attack on the Pope was the ruthless German dictator Adolf Hitler".
I am aware of no such attack by the Führer, but I am quite sure that he would have made no such remarks publicly, as he often stated that he was in fact Catholic.
Perhaps the author(s) of the article should look at the historical relationship between the Vatican and the Third Reich. In a letter to Hitler in February 1939, Pope Pius XII wrote the following: "To the Illustrious Herr Adolf Hitler, Führer and Chancellor of the German Reich! Here at the beginning of Our Pontificate We wish to assure you that We remain devoted to the spiritual welfare of the German people entrusted to your leadership...During the many years We spent in Germany, We did all in Our power to establish harmonious relations between Church and State. Now that the responsibilities of Our pastoral function have increased Our opportunities, how much more ardently do We pray to reach that goal. May the prosperity of the German people and their progress in every domain come, with God's help, to fruition!".
The Church also remained silent during Hitler's Final Solution and has a disgraceful history of Holocaust denial. As recently as January 2009, bishop Richard Williamson stated "I believe that the historical evidence is hugely against 6 million having been deliberately gassed in gas chambers as a deliberate policy of Adolf Hitler". The bishop remains part of the Vatican's holy order.
Despite what various Catholic fascists have to say, there is much to be celebrated here. Kenny has stated that the historical connection between Church and State "would never be the same" and there are now strong calls for prayer to be scrapped in the Irish parliament. Also, in an unprecedented move, the Vatican has recalled its special envoy in Ireland back to Rome in order to deal with the fallout caused by the Cloyne report. Perhaps now the Church will finally begin to clean its act up and Ireland will set itself on the road to becoming a truly secular State.