Originally Posted by WJL
What's the truth about this? How should these claims be answered or addressed?
I didn't read the quotes, but I have some comments. It seems like some people are bent on revising history.
But that goes both ways.
It is true that the Irish church did not originally follow the Latin rite, it's tradition derives from Gaul and Britain before the Gallo-Roman rite was imposed in those places. Monasticism reached Ireland very early (long before St Benedict wrote his rule that came to dominate western monasticism). In fact it really is possible that a monk or monks of the earliest monastic ttraditions from Egypt accompanied either St Patrick or St Palladius to Eire. That is not to say that we know it to be the case for sure, but it is quite possible.
Anyway, the Papacy was not developed like it is today, so it did not do all of the kind of things it does now in places like France and Ireland. However, it is certain the Irish church was always in communion with Rome from the beginning and also in communion with the Orthodox Eastern Catholic churches to the east from it's beginning. An interesting detail: since the first inklings of the Irish church were in the early fifth century they were in communion with the churches that would later be known to us as non-Chalcedonians too, the Council of Chalcedon happened in 451AD.
It isn't correct to confuse the fact that churches were using different liturgies (they were) and were more independent in the beginning (they were) with the idea that they may have not been in communion with Rome. It does not follow.