Search
home | e-letter | personnel/patrons/board | contact iona | donations | the iona blog | news | feeds | press
Relevant Links


News

Full text of Senator Martin Mansergh's article on religious freedom

Below is the full text of Senator Martin Mansergh's article on religious freedom. With kind permission of the Irish Catholic.

22/03/07
View full text

Religious freedom under threat says Senator Mansergh

Elites “who want to reshape Irish society according to their lights with least possible reference to the people" are fundamentally threatening religious freedom in Ireland, according to prominent Senator, Martin Mansergh.

In an article in the Irish Catholic, Senator Mansergh said that such people are demanding that their unrepresentative views “supplant the democratic wishes of a majority of the people”. Secular humanism, he continued “is being promoted as the embodiment of neutrality and therefore should rightfully become the norm at a stroke," he said.

Senator Mansergh, who is a member of the Church of Ireland, added that the majority faith of Catholicism now "places few constraints on personal freedom or choices, but equally no person or organisation should be forced by legislation or agencies of the State to act in a manner contrary to their conscientious religious beliefs”. Influential voices were attempting to undermine this equilibrium, he said.

Alluding to the row over the Catholic Church's crisis pregnancy agency, Cura, he said: "Catholic pregnancy advisory agencies in Ireland have been threatened with a withdrawal of funding unless they are prepared to engage in abortion referral at a remove." This situation was comparable to the situation in the UK where Church adoption agencies were being refused funding because of their stance over gay couples.

He also referred to calls for a removal of derogations from the EU equality directive which allow churches to protect their ethos in schools, hospitals and charities. Without the derogation, it would have been "impossible to maintain a religious ethos in any institution," he said. "In short, religion is to be privatised and removed from the public sphere in a . . . post-Christian Ireland," Senator Mansergh added.

22/03/07

UK social welfare benefits 'destroying family life' says new book

Couples who pretend to live apart can gain up to £10,000 a year in benefits, according to a new book published by UK think tank the Institute of Economic Affairs. Written by sociologist and author Patricia Morgan, the book says that the scale of the fraud is the result of a Government policy which discourages couples from marrying or even cohabiting, dealing a "devastating blow" to family life.

21/03/07
View full text

Greens welcome Iona policy on tax individualisation

The Green Party has welcomed The Iona Institute's new policy document calling for fairer treatment of one-income married couples in a statement released by Finance spokesman for the Greens, Dan Boyle TD. The Deputy said that a series of measures are needed to eliminate the anomalies.

20/03/07
View full text

Fine Gael adopts 'Iona' tax policy

Fine Gael have pledged to begin easing the effects of tax individualisation if they are in Government after the General Election. Their plan involves increasing the stay-at-home carers tax credit, currently worth 770 euro pa, by 1000 euro pa. The proposal is in line with the tax policy document launched by the Iona Institute which called for the Government to begin closing the tax gap between double and single income married couples.

16/03/07
View full text

Bishops favour delaying children's rights referendum

The Irish Catholic Bishops' Conference have called for the Government's proposed referendum on children's rights to be postponed until after the General Election.

16/03/07
View full text

First Iona Institute policy document launched

Stay-at-home mothers have been heavily penalised by the Government's ongoing tax individualisation policy, according to a new report published by the Iona Institute. The report says that the growing income gap, which now stands at up to €6,240 between single and double income married families should be an issue in the forthcoming election.

15/03/07
View full text

An interview with Iona director David Quinn

Catholic news website Zenit has just published an interview with our director David Quinn on the reasons behind the establishment of the Iona Institute.

08/03/07
View full text

Brother and sister challenge Germany's incest law.

A German brother and sister, who have four children together are campaigning to have their country's incest laws quashed.

07/03/07
View full text

Irish Times article on gay adoption

The Irish Times yesterday printed an article by Iona Institute researcher Tom O'Gorman on gay adoption. Here is a link to the piece to enable readers to go online and engage in the debate. (Subscription required)

06/02/07
View full text

Irish children more likely to binge drink and abuse drugs, study finds.

Irish children are more likely than those in other countries to abuse drugs and alcohol, a new Government-sponsored study on child well-being has found.

01/03/07
View full text

Women twice as likely as men to file for divorce

New divorce statistics show that women are twice as likely to apply for divorce as men, a conference on family law was told on Tuesday.

28/02/07
View full text

Blair rejects marriage-based cure for social ills.

Prime Minister Tony Blair today rejected calls to put marriage at the heart of social and family policy. Rejecting Conservative Party leader David Cameron's suggestion that family breakdown and fatherlessness were at the heart of Britain's social ills, Mr Blair said that anti-social problems were not limited to to fatherless families.

27/02/07
View full text

UK marriage rates plummet

The number of new marriages in Britain has fallen to the lowest level in 111 years, according to new data which emerged last week. Latest figures reveal that the number of marriages has dropped by 30,000 between 2004 and 2005 to a total of just over 244,000.

27/02/07
View full text

Aggressive secularism a “betrayal of republican traditions”: Taoiseach

Taoiseach Bertie Ahern has praised organised religion as a force for good in Irish society. Speaking at the opening of an ongoing structured dialogue between the State and religious groups, the Taoiseach said that there was no place in Ireland for “aggressive secularism”.

27/02/07
View full text

Text of Professor Binchy's Trinity address

The following is the most relevant section of Professor Binchy's talk as delivered at TCD on Wednesday evening.

22/02/07
View full text

Effects of referendum “uncertain” says William Binchy

The wording of the Government's proposed children's rights referendum could have legal effects “well beyond those indicated by the Government” according to Professor William Binchy of Trinity College Dublin. Professor Binchy, an acknowledged authority on family and constitutional law, said the proposed wording “raises several important questions of interpretation”.

22/02/07 [date] 22/02/07
View full text

Bishops to study children's rights amendment

The Catholic bishops are to examine the wording of the proposed children's rights amendment but will not issue a statement about it until after their March quarterly meeting at the earliest. A spokesman for the Bishops made the comment after the wording of the proposed amendment was announced on Monday.

21/02/07
View full text

Fathers have key role in fighting crime, says Tory leader

A family friendly society is a key element in stamping out gang culture, according to Conservative Party leader David Cameron. He was reacting to the third fatal shooting in London in a month. Teenager Billy Cox was found dead from gunshot wounds on Wednesday.

10/02/07
View full text

PDs should respect religious conviction - Tanaiste

The PDs should “honour and respect religious practice and conviction”, and be prepared to work with the Churches “as partners in social action”, Tanaiste Michael McDowell has said.

20/02/07
View full text



1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43

 


© 2007 IONA Institute | | All Rights Reserved | | Charity No: 17347

Spotlight...  

Institute for Marriage and Public Policy

First Things

Relationships Foundation

National Fatherhood Initiative

The Institute for the Study of Civil Society

Studies

Family Facts

Family & Life

The Christian Institute

Veritas

 

"The child...shall have the right from birth to a name, the right to acquire a nationality and, as far as possible, the right to know and be cared for by his or her parents."

Article 7. UN Convention on the Rights of the Child.