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Thread: Church and State: The Dáil prayer

  1. #1
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    Default Church and State: The Dáil prayer

    Recent CSO data show a further decline in those identifying as Christian in the Irish population. People of no religion are, again, the largest religious minority in the Republic, while there are growing numbers in non-christian denominations.

    There are serious consequent issues: the control of education, medicine and charities, the Repeal of the Eighth Amendment


    Now we have a vote this afternoon on a less serious but indicative matter: the Dáil Prayer which runs as follows:

    Direct, we beseech Thee, O Lord, our actions by Thy holy inspirations and carry them on by Thy gracious assistance; that every word and work of ours may always begin from Thee, and by Thee be happily ended; through Christ our Lord. Amen.


    The above prayer is said at the commencement of each day's business in the Dáil by the Ceann Comhairle, and in the Seanad by the Clerk of the Seanad.


    A motion has been proposed for 30 seconds silence to follow this prayer to accommodate non-believers:

    The new rules say: “All members present shall stand while the prayer is being read, and when it is concluded, members shall remain standing for 30 seconds of silent reflection.”
    It means an excruciating prolongation of embarrassment and possible affront to TDs who cannot, in conscience, join in the prayer. Ruth Coppinger rightly describes the motion as ' Ridiculous'

    It is time the separation of Church and State was completed.
    Last edited by Spectabilis; 11-04-2017 at 02:19 PM.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Church and State: The Dáil prayer

    Why don't they just do what FF did in 1927 and consider the whole thing an empty formula?

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    Default Re: Church and State: The Dáil prayer

    Quote Originally Posted by Spectabilis View Post
    Recent CSO data show a further decline in those identifying as Christian in the Irish population. People of no religion are, again, the largest religious minority in the Republic, while there are growing numbers in non-christian denominations.

    There are serious consequent issues: the control of education, medicine and charities, the Repeal of the Eighth Amendment


    Now we have a vote this afternoon on a less serious but indicative matter: the Dáil Prayer which runs as follows:

    Direct, we beseech Thee, O Lord, our actions by Thy holy inspirations and carry them on by Thy gracious assistance; that every word and work of ours may always begin from Thee, and by Thee be happily ended; through Christ our Lord. Amen.


    The above prayer is said at the commencement of each day's business in the Dáil by the Ceann Comhairle, and in the Seanad by the Clerk of the Seanad.


    A motion has been proposed for 30 seconds silence to follow this prayer to accommodate non-believers:

    The new rules say: “All members present shall stand while the prayer is being read, and when it is concluded, members shall remain standing for 30 seconds of silent reflection.”
    It means an excruciating prolongation of embarrassment and possible affront to TDs who cannot, in conscience, join in the prayer. Ruth Coppinger rightly describes the motion as ' Ridiculous'

    It is time the separation of Church and State was completed.
    100 % mate.... and when theyre at it they should make the church pay up what it owes for abusin the kids did you hear on the news there that they paid up **** all so far????

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    Default Re: Church and State: The Dáil prayer

    If they'd just leave out the word ''Christ'' i could interpret the prayer as referring to ''Lord'' of the forest.
    Happiness is an inside job.

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    Default Re: Church and State: The Dáil prayer

    Quote Originally Posted by Trow View Post
    If they'd just leave out the word ''Christ'' i could interpret the prayer as referring to ''Lord'' of the forest.
    So it could read like this then, Trow:

    Direct, we beseech Thee, O Lord of the Forest, our actions by Thy holy inspirations and carry them on by Thy gracious assistance; that every word and work of ours may always begin from Thee, and by Thee be happily ended; through our Lord. Amen.

    Apart from hilarity from some unworthy quarters, which you must be accustomed to by now, this version still gives agency to a deity rather than to the elected members. So no change there.

    The idea that the words and work of the Dáil are not directed by commonsense, decency, democratic principles, social justice, rationality, imagination, work and preparation, or any other set of admirable qualities, bothers me. Parliament is a human creation to govern human affairs, not one to give the approval of the divine to those who represent us and to their often flawed decisions.

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    Default Re: Church and State: The Dáil prayer

    Quote Originally Posted by Spectabilis View Post
    So it could read like this then, Trow:

    Direct, we beseech Thee, O Lord of the Forest, our actions by Thy holy inspirations and carry them on by Thy gracious assistance; that every word and work of ours may always begin from Thee, and by Thee be happily ended; through our Lord. Amen.

    Apart from hilarity from some unworthy quarters, which you must be accustomed to by now, this version still gives agency to a deity rather than to the elected members. So no change there.

    The idea that the words and work of the Dáil are not directed by commonsense, decency, democratic principles, social justice, rationality, imagination, work and preparation, or any other set of admirable qualities, bothers me. Parliament is a human creation to govern human affairs, not one to give the approval of the divine to those who represent us and to their often flawed decisions.
    No, I suggested leaving out the word Christ. I did'nt suggest writing in ''Lord of the forest''. You wrote it in yourself. I don't know of any ''deity'' that presides over the forest apart from Natures own spirits which our Island and earliest cultures were most familiar with yet somewhat lost on a population today.

    In your latter remarks you include the word ''imagination.'' Try to use it, imagine your parliament of human creation governing human affairs to be as free spirited as nature itself. You are afterall a part of it.
    Happiness is an inside job.

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    Default Re: Church and State: The Dáil prayer

    Has the Dail prayer actually worked? Perhaps Dail business would have turned out even more badly without it!

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    Default Re: Church and State: The Dáil prayer

    Quote Originally Posted by Richardbouvet View Post
    Has the Dail prayer actually worked? Perhaps Dail business would have turned out even more badly without it!
    It works to the extent that in excluding the words ''virgin Mary'' makes it non-divisive to the splinter groups of Christianity. [The Catholic/Protestant thing]

    But then, as we learn, there are others with valid views who seek the absolute removal of the guidance of deity through prayer in Governmental affairs. Personally i think such an inclusion, for some, is a hiding place for rotten souls who seek to be viewed as righteous.
    Last edited by Trow; 11-04-2017 at 05:10 PM.
    Happiness is an inside job.

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    Default Re: Church and State: The Dáil prayer

    The only place I've really seen this debated seriously is the Irish Times letters page, which has recently seen a flurry of debate on it, but there was no little or no focus on the impact on non-religious TDs themselves.

    It is a bit strange to think that it is still being said in this day and age; non-believing politicians are not a new phenomenon. The first TD openly to be an atheist was (as far as I am aware) Dr Conor Cruise O'Brien, and he served in Cabinet as long ago as the 70s. Forty years on, non-believers still either have to participate in a prayer they don't believe in, which doesn't exactly epitomise the honesty we would like our public representatives to display, or sit down whilst the others remain standing, which doesn't exactly cultivate a collaborative atmosphere in the Dáil or get the day off to a good start.

    There may well be plenty of TDs who like the prayer, but what's stopping them from meeting together and praying outside the chamber?

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    Default Re: Church and State: The Dáil prayer

    I wonder does stormont have a prayer!

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    Default Re: Church and State: The Dáil prayer

    Apparently ourselves, Australia, Canada, South Africa, The US and UK are parliaments that do.

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    Default Re: Church and State: The Dáil prayer

    Quote Originally Posted by Fraxinus View Post
    I wonder does stormont have a prayer!
    No, they blast out Bon Jovi's ''living on a prayer'' Or at least they should.
    Happiness is an inside job.

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    Default Re: Church and State: The Dáil prayer

    Quote Originally Posted by Ceannaire View Post


    There may well be plenty of TDs who like the prayer, but what's stopping them from meeting together and praying outside the chamber?
    Is it compulsory for all TD's to be present inside the chamber during prayer?
    Happiness is an inside job.

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    Default Re: Church and State: The Dáil prayer

    Why can they not just have a small chapel and faith rooms for TD's of religious persuasions and leave the Dail and Seanad for Oireachtas Business alone?

    Every Hospital has a chapel for those who need it. You would not make a Consultant listen to a prayer before operating.

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    Default Re: Church and State: The Dáil prayer

    Quote Originally Posted by Spectabilis View Post
    Recent CSO data show a further decline in those identifying as Christian in the Irish population. People of no religion are, again, the largest religious minority in the Republic, while there are growing numbers in non-christian denominations.

    There are serious consequent issues: the control of education, medicine and charities, the Repeal of the Eighth Amendment


    Now we have a vote this afternoon on a less serious but indicative matter: the Dáil Prayer which runs as follows:

    Direct, we beseech Thee, O Lord, our actions by Thy holy inspirations and carry them on by Thy gracious assistance; that every word and work of ours may always begin from Thee, and by Thee be happily ended; through Christ our Lord. Amen.


    The above prayer is said at the commencement of each day's business in the Dáil by the Ceann Comhairle, and in the Seanad by the Clerk of the Seanad.


    A motion has been proposed for 30 seconds silence to follow this prayer to accommodate non-believers:

    The new rules say: “All members present shall stand while the prayer is being read, and when it is concluded, members shall remain standing for 30 seconds of silent reflection.”
    It means an excruciating prolongation of embarrassment and possible affront to TDs who cannot, in conscience, join in the prayer. Ruth Coppinger rightly describes the motion as ' Ridiculous'

    It is time the separation of Church and State was completed.
    Toyed for ages for a viable alternative and can only conclude that the debating chamber is for as it was meant and should not involve an enforced religious service or an invoking ritual for a non democratically elected spirit.

    That prayer can be said privately and silently. Don't even have to speak, why not stand silently and dignified for 30 seconds?
    Last edited by Trow; 12-04-2017 at 02:07 AM.
    Happiness is an inside job.

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