November 17, 2005

Liz O’Donnell touches nerve on Church role!

The Southern Star

WHILE both An Taoiseach Mr. Ahern and former minister of state Liz O’Donnell, TD, of the PD party, have been accused of ‘sloppy language’ in their comments about Church-State relations over the past week, there is no doubt that the controversy has opened up a debate about what Ms. O’Donnell calls the ‘traditional deference shown to the Catholic Church’ and its role in many areas of Irish life such as education and to a lesser extent, the health services.

In calling for an end to the ‘special relationship’ between the Church and the State, Ms. O’Donnell was, technically, in error because in formal terms, that relationship was ended by the December 12th, 1972 referendum whereby the Irish people, by a majority of 4 to 1, voted to abolish the reference in Article 44.1.2 of the Constitution. This had stated that ‘the State recognises the special position of the Holy Catholic Apostolic and Roman Church as the guardian of the Faith professed by the great majority of citizens.’

Posted by kshaw at November 17, 2005 11:16 AM