BASIC (www.basic.ie) have claimed that due to the plunging numbers of Catholic Clergy in Ireland, within 50 years, we will have very few Irish priests in Ireland. The number of ordained priests has declined as follows
2001 - 17,906
2005 - 16,322 indicating a loss of 1,584 in just 4 years that figures are available and if this trend alone continues over the next 20 years we are in serious trouble indeed...
At present 43% of Irish clergy are in 50-70 age bracket, with the 80+ group increasing in numbers...
Will we have female clergy or even open a debate on the possibility?
According to a spokesperson for the Bishop of Kerry Bill Murphy (pic alongside),
'this is simply a non-starter, I can't see it happening.' !!
Well Bishop, you may not see it happening but you could at least start the debate!!!
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