It began quietly enough, when he disciplined Fr James Larkin for being dangerously pro-life. Fr Larkin had spoken against the Irish referendum, and pointed out that anyone who had voted "yes" (through ignorance, through weakness, through their own deliberate fault, as the Anglican Prayer Book puts it) should regard this as a sin and go to Confession.
Diarmuid Martin, Dublin's Iron Man.
Now, however, the good Archbishop has noticed that many of his priests are expressing dangerously pro-life attitudes; the others, less interested in the question whether babies in the womb should be dismembered, are still receiving confessions, or at least conducting masses in which the "Kyrie" is present. "Better be on the safe side," he said today, "and punish the lot of them."
There are of course difficulties in exiling several hundred priests to Craggy Island, or dumping them on the Loreto sisters in Rathfarnham, but the good archbishop is working hard to find a solution. The other problem is that Irish churches will no longer have priests to offer Mass: however, in the era of Diarmuid most Catholics have stopped attending church anyway, so this may not be a serious difficulty.
Well done, thou good and faithful servant!
It is not known how Archbishop Martin himself voted on the 8th Amendment Referendum; at the time he made very vague pro-life noises, but obviously the whole point of the Catholic Church is that it should stay in step with whatever secular government is in power. Did not Jesus say "Render unto Caesar whatever he asks of you: God really isn't bothered"?
Many priests in the Dublin Archdiocese are angry with the archbishop for his decision to exile them. One at least has taken the matter into his own hands, or rather feet.
The martrydom of Archbishop Diarmuid.
In view of the wide dislike for Dublin's spiritual leader expressed by ordinary Catholics, it cannot be long before Pope Francis makes him a cardinal. It worked for Cupich.