Irish Catholics not passing on faith, says Martin

May 30, 2011

Irish society is not just suffering from the sex abuse scandal but from a failure to pass on the faith to the younger generation, said the archbishop of Dublin.

"We have to completely, radically change the way we pass on the faith," Archbishop Diarmuid Martin told Catholic News Service May 16.

"Our parishes are not places where evangelization and catechesis are taking place."

During a speech in Washington, Martin spoke of the declining practice of the faith in Dublin and of the need to give young people responsibility in the parish.

The Church runs 90 per cent of the elementary schools in Ireland.

Yet only 18 per cent of Catholics regulary attend Sunday Mass, he said. Martin said he wonders about the commitment of Catholic teachers.

"If people are being prepared for the sacraments by people who don't frequent the sacraments, there's a real problem there."