Baptism Of Ire


Screen Shot 2016-01-21 at 15.23.30

Archbishop of Dublin Diarmuid Martin

Further to Minister for Children Dr James Reilly telling the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child last week that the divestment of existing school patronage in Ireland is slow reports:

Priests should not baptise children whose parents are just trying to get them into better schools, the Archbishop of Dublin [Diarmuid Martin] has said.

…”It’s [just] not this baptismal certificate – it’s a religious … entry into the life of the church, and to baptise somebody for any other reasons is wrong.

Parents, you know, shouldn’t be presenting children to be baptised in that way – but priests shouldn’t be doing it either.”

Archbishop: Priests should not baptise children just to help with admission to schools (

Previously: ‘Divestment Of School Patronage Is Slow’

Educate And Party Together

Sam Boal/Rollingnews

79 thoughts on “Baptism Of Ire

  1. ahyeah

    Not so much that they shouldn’t – more that they shouldn’t have to. And the same goes for parents.

    And this PR-savvy cleric has it in his power to change that – so less lip service and more actual action would be welcome.

    1. realPolithicks

      This is spot on. This priest is a big talker, you don’t see a lot of action on his part though.

      1. ahjayzis

        We all pay to run ‘his’ schools.

        You need to stop acting like we’re trying to muscle in on something – we’re taxpayers, they’re tax funded schools.

    1. Sam

      Should have been taken off them in part settlement of the abuse cases , if not for that dodgy deal that Woods did without the AG.

  2. ahyeah

    The bullpoo around this is maddening. In Martin’s full address –

    “The big problem that we have is that Cathloic schools in areas which are very good, everybody wants to go to them, and you have to have some criteria for a judgement.”

    Not the case at all. The “big problem” is that, for most people, there aren’t any alternatives.

  3. Anne

    They shouldn’t be doing it for those reasons, they should be doing it for the same reasons as everyone else who does, for the occasion of it, and a day out for everyone?

    He’s deluded. Entry into the life of the church me hoop.

      1. Sam

        Some but plenty are doing it because of fear of their child being discriminated.
        It’s not just a handful of people who admit to that.

      2. scottser

        nope. at my little one’s christening, each of the families i spoke to only went through it because of the school’s issue.

          1. Dόn Pídgéόní

            No one is saying he isn’t right, everyone knows this happens. People do it because there isn’t a choice, or if you want to believe that being baptised doesn’t play a role in the school your kids can attend, that perception is very much there. That can’t be a good thing for either the Church, who wants followers who are genuine or people who don’t want to have to lie.

            Free up the schools, give people a choice, and a choice that is practical, not one along the lines of “oh there are plenty of non-religious schools” because clearly there aren’t and stop this “but they aren’t state schools” nonsense because they are state schools in every other way. Then this won’t happen and he will be happy.

          2. scottser

            martin is only recognising a situation that we’ve all known for generations. he’s not ‘right’ by a long chalk.

          3. MoyestWithExcitement

            About what? That people are only baptising their children so they can get an education? Everyone knew that already. It’s a disgraceful situation where people feel they have no choice but to sign their child into a religion so they can go to school.

          4. MoyestWithExcitement

            He’s “right”? You used the word ‘should’. We’re talking about your opinion. You just agree with his position. You really *should* defend your opinion. If the only schools in someone’s town are Catholic, and their child needs to have an education, why should they deny their child the chance to go to school?

          5. ahjayzis

            He never defends it Moyesy. It’s hard to just come out and stay he wants to live in a Catholic State, where the rest of us are like guestworkers or something.

          6. MoyestWithExcitement

            Some people need to latch onto a big group they’ve not contributed to in order to feel like they’re important.

      3. Anne

        Superstitious reasons too maybe..
        Eternal damnation to limbo for unbaptised babies was probably a factor.
        Better safe than sorry I suppose..

        1. Anne

          Didn’t they do away with limbo a few years ago?
          Not sure where unbaptised babies go these days…

          Yeah they did..
          “There are reasons to hope that God will save these infants precisely because it was not possible (to baptize them).”

          Still have to get baptised though –
          “The document stressed that its conclusions should not be interpreted as questioning original sin or “used to negate the necessity of baptism or delay the conferral of the sacrament”.

  4. Sam

    Church gets control of most schools as a way of continuing their grip on society,
    then moans about people baptising their kids just because they’re afraid of falling foul of the church grip on the schools.

    Someone’s on both sides of the aisle there…

      1. scottser

        it’s very nice that the bishop sees the hypocrisy. now all he has to do is divest the schools of catholic patronage and we’re all set :)

        1. newsjustin

          He’s on record as favouring handing over catholic schools to other patrons for years. Trouble is, his views are not shared by everyone (or many) in those schools. Turns out a lot of people want catholic schools. Who’d have thought it?

          1. scottser

            you’ll find that most catholics simply don’t want to let go of their authoritah, which you’ll agree is a very different chalice of wafers.

          2. Dόn Pídgéόní

            The irony being of course news, that probably everyone on this thread went to a catholic school because there wasn’t any other choice

  5. Clampers Outside!

    “…..but priests shouldn’t be doing it either”

    …is that a vague admission of the church being at fault and that the situation leaves parents with little to no option?

    I think it is.

    1. donal

      I agree. It is an acknowledgement that priests are not doing background checks on the new members, and nobody wants new members who won’t be properly involved in the church. A hueg church with no one really believing anything is less attractive to the church leaders than a small one with devout believers

      1. ahyeah

        I’d imagine the opposite is the case – church leadership likes nothing better than to cite the theoretically high % of the population that belong to the church. They don’t care whether you’re a believer or not – you’re not even permitted to formally leave any more. Being able to claim mass membership gives them power, influence and position, which is all they’ve ever cared about. (Alongside money and sex)

        1. donal

          Ok, fair point. But perhaps two messages for different audiences.

          Tell the public at large everyone is a member, we must be powerful

          Hope the public at large don’t realise that sh*tloads of the members are barely invested and would do a st peter and deny deny deny if the numbers were questioned. Not much use being in charge of a flock if the sheep can tell the sheepdog to fupp off!

          Is this a rare public acknowledgement of the second?

      2. Clampers Outside!

        If that were the case, why am I not allowed excommunication?

        Why am I to remain on the RCC register until my death?

        Nice thought, I sincerely wish it were correct, but it is clearly not.

    2. newsjustin

      Priests have a duty to ensure people presenting for the sacraments do so honestly and for the right reasons. They don’t always deliver on that.

      Then again, Pope Emeritus Benedict has pointed out the need to be generous with the sacraments. Baptising, giving first holy communion, etc even where parents don’t take it as seriously as they should.

        1. newsjustin

          No. The sacraments should not be withheld from s child because their parents don’t have much faith in them. That’s Benedict’s point. Martin’s is kind of the opposite. The answer lies somewhere in between, which is where most priests tend to be caught.

          1. newsjustin

            It’s not Happy Meals they’re dishing out lads. Not a one-size-fits-all thinh. Humans are inherently vague and contradictory. A priest must try to make an honest call.

  6. ahjayzis

    Yeah everybody, quit getting in the way and accept second class status, you’re interfering with real catholic’s getting preferential access to the schools you pay for.

    If you insist on making our state schools part of your church, we’re going to make your primitive rites part of our civil life, divorced from superstition.

        1. newsjustin

          Clampers, catholic schools are not state schools. You no this. Wishful thinking won’t make it so.

          1. Dόn Pídgéόní

            Ah, I get it. It’s like the abortion debates. You are so welded to your position that you are unwilling to accept there are nuances involved so scream black and white.

        1. ahjayzis

          Yeah why don’t they. Once we’ve freed all that money the church doesn’t really seem to need, we can build State Schools and everyone’s happy. We’ll take the teachers employed by the state too. And the secretaries. And the furniture. And everything built since the 60’s. And all the double glazing. The pipes. The finishes.

        2. newsjustin

          That’s not how it works. The state has an obligation to educate children. It does this by funding private schools.

          1. scottser

            the primary educator in the state is the family. the family have a responsibility to ensure children have a minimum standard of education but does not determine what that standard is, according to Sec 14 of the Education (Welfare) Act 2000.

  7. Starina

    that’s interesting in comparison to the church’s historical stance on baptism, which is to save as many children’s souls as possible, even against their parents’ will.

  8. Horselover Fat

    He’s right, parents shouldn’t be baptising their children to get them into schools. However, don’t children have a right to be educated? Isnt that kind of important? Speaking of which, where is the minister for education……?

  9. All the good ones fly south for winter

    “[P]riests should not baptise children whose parents are just trying to get them into better schools…”

    But they should pretend to and then at splash time drop kick the child into the crowd.


  10. Tish Mahorey

    “get them into better schools”

    Loaded comment there. Suggesting non Catholic ethos schools are not as good.

    Divest all schools now.

  11. Deluded

    Pretend Catholics go to the National schools around here; the actual Catholics are in the Educate Together.
    The real problem starts with the secondary schools.

  12. Tucker Done

    my son/daughter to be will be baptised in both church of ireland and the catholic church. I will then choose which public school to send him/her.i will tell whatever story needs to be told in order to make this happen.

  13. veritas

    Could anyone define what a catholic school is in the context of state funded national schools.If the patron of a school is a skinhead does that make it a skinhead school and must students be skinheads.(insert name of any group for skinhead to suit your own preference.

Comments are closed.