After Philomena



Martin Sixsmith with Philomena Lee in Dublin last year

“A new TV series looking at Irish mothers who were forced to give up their babies for adoption is to be broadcast on BBC 2. ‘Ireland’s Lost Babies’ will be presented and led by Martin Sixsmith, the British journalist who brought the story of Philomena Lee to national attention. The series will investigate the role of Irish Catholic Churches in the adoption trade and will begin from next Wednesday (September 17) at 9pm.

New BBC series to look at Irish mothers forced to give up their babies (Katy Harrington, Irish Post)





Turlough O’Riordan writes:

“I came across an interesting first hand experience of the Chief Medical Officer visiting the Bessborough home for unmarried mothers in Cork during the Second World War. Truly barbaric I think you will sadly agree.”


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19 thoughts on “After Philomena

  1. Sidewinder

    It brings me close to tears to think what Ireland could have been like if more people like him had been in charge.

      1. ABM

        So in summary, the Ireland of today faces the same moral problems faced by the fledgling republic.

        Not only that, the figures show us that despite our apparent improved economic prosperity, today’s problems are even worse (abortion rates, illegitimacy rates, suicide rates, crime rates, sexual infection/disease rates, level of child abuse, rampant sexual heterodoxy, etc.)

        Of course it’s “real” heresy to observe that the cause of all this is a relativistic, Godless, anything-goes social outlook that is peddled by pseudo-intellectual sociology “experts”.

        It’s time we re-assessed our role in creation and think more about our ultimate fate. Permitting abortion, death panels for elderly people, allowing cross-dressing men to adopt innocent children, de-stigmaizing poor decision-making, facilitating the compulsory re-engineering of society and the abolition of the family is a gives us “freedom” from what exactly?

        1. Planet of the Missing Biros

          I’m converting to Church of Ireland to give my children Christian morals and culture without the meddling of the Vatican.

          Ireland needs Christianity, not Catholicism.

          1. ABM

            I admire your honesty.

            I suspect, however, that you (like many Irish potatoe heads) think you’re moving up a rung on the lower middle class ladder by pretending to be a gate lodge Protestant.

            At least you’re not like this guy:


            You do realise that Rome/London (High Anglican anyway) relations are at an all time high, don’t you? Oh and there’s even an Ordinariate way out for those who are disgusted by what’s happened to the Church of England in recent decades (i.e. taken over by miltant feminists, homosexuals and opportunists who see all the trappings of hierarchy, tradition, property and assets that they think they can appropriate for their own personal benefit). CofI is no different.

            But hey, if Ian Paisley/Westoboro Baptist/whatever-you’re-having-yourself -style Protestantism is what you’re in to, best of luck with that.

        2. Nigel

          So, if the moral problems are the same, being a largely religious society didn’t have much to do with solving them, did it? We had those problems when our highly religious nation started out, and now that we are becoming increasingly secular, we still have them, because being largely religious solved bugger all of them.

        3. Sidewinder

          “Same problems” being mass incarceration of single mothers, incredibly high infant mortality rates, no discernible health service, widespread illiteracy, pandemic levels of alcoholism, legal marital rape, eff all third level graduates outside the wealthiest families, low life expectancy, diptheria, TB, polio and the possibility of german bombs on Dublin?

          Oh wait…no, none of those is a problem now.

  2. Cian

    We’re doing a damn good attempt to act as if nobody knew anything in those days when its pretty bloody clear they did – and generally did nothing.

  3. inotherwords

    Not sure when this was written but these days doctors advise that green baby poo/diarrhea means that the baby isn’t getting enough nourishment

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