Wednesday, April 07, 2004

No faith, no church

Although I'm sure there are a million practical arguments against, I still have to admit that I was heartened when I read in the Irish Independent that Bishop Murphy of Kerry had said that those who don't believe shouldn't take part in the sacraments. Sure, there are many people out there who struggle with their faith and how can we insist on 100% adherence at all times. That's ridiculous.

But, I'm aware, and I'm sure most Irish Catholics (and the problem seems more severe here than I have ever encountered in the US) are aware, of those who want to marry in a Church because it's a nice ceremony, the church makes nice photographs, whatever. I know one couple who only had their son make his First Holy Communion because they didn't want him to miss out on the fun day and the presents.

These people are making a mockery of what we believe and of the Church. Equally, there's a lack of respect and a failure to acknowledge that a church is not a government building and you do not have a right to use it. Those of us who keep the churches going have a right to expect that only those who share our faith and views or at least respect our faith and views should be allowed to take part in Church ceremonies.