Ireland and the Catholic Church in Ireland have their problems. Sadly, they gave some of those problems also to the USA. However, since I am forever harping on praying for vocations to the priesthood, one problem in particular struck me today.
Only six Irish sign up for the priesthood – a 222-year-record low
A mere six men will be starting the classes required to become a priest at the National Seminary at St. Patrick’s College Maynooth in County Kildare this fall – the lowest number in the seminary’s more than two centuries of existence.
Fifteen men, the Irish Catholic reports, are currently undergoing preparatory work that will allow them to become seminarians in the fall of 2018.
Maynooth, which opened in 1795, was once the largest seminary in the world with space for 500 men to train to become priests.
Last year there were only 80 men undergoing the necessary studies at the seminary to become members of the clergy.
The number is likely to have dipped even further this year following something of a crisis last summer when a number of seminarians were caught using the gay hookup app Grindr. [No, no! Nothing to see here. I wonder if Fishwrap (aka National Sodomitic Reporter) has reported on this.] As a result, Archbishop of Dublin Diarmuid Martin ordered three trainees to leave the seminary and continue their studies at the Irish college in Rome.
“I have my own reasons for doing this,” the Archbishop said at the time.
At the time critics of the move warned authorities that his actions would damage Maynooth; Fr. Brendan Hoban said it was “unfair” and said it did not address the underlying issue.
It’s a vicious circle by now, a tornado of failure, a hurricane of identity suicide.
The vocations crisis was in part manufactured. In Ireland it is so bad that it is a self-perpetuating vortex of self-inflicted wounds.
Talk about manmade climate change!
I’m reminded that Benedict XVI, in his Letter to the Irish people, recommended a return to traditional practices.
Do you want where you live to look like Ireland?
Pray for vocations. Be willing to offer your own children. Support your priests and seminarians.
Stop coddling perversity. Return to the Mass of our forebears as much as possible. Bring back our devotions and processions and many seasonal and festal blessings. Use sacramentals. Pray the Rosary.
Do penance for sins and offenses against the Sacred Heart and Immaculate Heart.