The outspoken and outgoing dean of St Patrick’s Cathedral in Dublin has warned that a lack of ecumenism in Ireland has led to the ‘demoralised’ state of the Catholic Church in Ireland.
On the eve of his retirement, The Very Rev Robert MacCarthy a senior figure in the Church of Ireland, said that the state of the Irish Catholic Church “may have something to do with its lack of ecumenism.”
Rev MacCarthy, 71, complained that there was little beyond personal friendships in the drive towards ecumenism in Ireland.
“While I have been happy to welcome the present Roman Catholic Archbishop of Dublin as a preacher here, I have to say that there has been no reciprocal invitation to the Pro-Cathedral,” he said.
In his final sermon as dean at St Patricks, he complained that ecumenism in Ireland seemed “to be equated to fellowship between the two archbishops; that should merely be the first step.”
Dean MacCarthy, who retires from his position on Wednesday, was elected to his position in 1999, and is seen by some as an iconoclast.
He has been the focus of criticism by elements of the Catholic church, who have challenged his ordinary status, and has come under fire from some Episcopal colleagues too, who dislike his outspoken nature.
But in return he has also been fierce in his criticism of his own church, claiming they had been: “lucky that there was no inquiry into sexual abuse within the Church of Ireland – if there had been, I doubt if we would have been found to be blameless.”
January 24th, 2012 - Posted & Written by Simon Cross