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Old Feb 25, '12, 5:41 am
WJL WJL is offline
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Join Date: April 6, 2009
Posts: 248
Religion: Catholic
Default Re: The Claim that St. Patrick & the Celtic Church Weren't Catholic

Thanks for the helpful responses, everyone.

I still have a few questions on how I should address some of these anti-Catholic claims and allegations that were recently predicated to me. The way in which these ideas that Celtic Church weren't Catholic and that the English put an end to this alleged "Celtic Culdee Church" in Ireland and made it conform to Latin Catholicism, was recently presented to me in the following way:

I was having an online discussion with an someone on a private forum about the High Kingship of Ireland which had existed prior to the Norman invasion of Ireland in the 1100's. The subject of a possible restoration of a form of traditional Irish monarchy (rather than a republic) came up, which was an idea which we both had an interest in.

I, myself, have an interest in Catholic political philosophy and an interest in (restoration) Monarchism--as Monarchy has been endorsed by numerous popes and saints. For example, Pope Pius VI, who, in his allocution on the execution of King Louis XVI of France by Freemasonic republicans, Pourquoi Notre Voix, declared that Monarchy is "the best of all governments" and St. Thomas Aquinas who taught that "the kingdom [or monarchy] is the best form of government as long as it is not corrupt" (Summa Theologiae, I.II. q. 105, answer).

Being that Ireland is a traditionally Catholic nation, the majority of Irish people are Catholics, and that (a form of) monarchy is the traditional Irish form of government, in addition to the above information, I had said that if the Irish were (ideally) to re-establish an independent Catholic monarchy (which, yes, I realize is unlikely any time soon however, ideally if they were to do so and in principle, based on Catholic political philosophy and social teaching) that it would be only suitable for Ireland to have a Catholic monarch.

This individual whom I was having this conversation objected that:

Being a Catholic cannot be a precondition to be a High-King of Ireland. The majority of Irish High-Kings were Pagan, with many of them practicing in the profession of Druidry.
I responded:

That was only in pre-Christian Ireland before the introduction of Christianity by St. Patrick in the 5th century and its completion in the 6th century. Christianity defeated paganism / Druidism in Ireland. The last pagan High King was Lugaid mac Lˇegairi who reigned from 479-503. The first Christian (Catholic) High King of Ireland was Muirchertach mac Muiredaig who reigned from 504-527. Since then Ireland has been a Catholic nation.
He then responded:

Nonsense. If that was the argument one would argue that because the protestants beat the Catholics then they were entitled to the kingship. It was Catholic chieftains that agreed to the surrender and regrant system under foreign monarchs. The poets and brehons who were still the ethos of the Druidic order were the only ones who opposed this and claimed that the land was vested by ancient rights to people of their craft. Irish Catholic lords abandoned the Irish kingship as did the Catholic Church who have always been England's ally, not Ireland's. A pagan Druid has every right to be a high king as an Irish catholic. No Irish king can be under compliment to any foreign institution. Lets also remember that most of the Irish Christian high kings were of the Celtic church and not the Roman one.
In summary, he is ultimately trying to say that the Catholic Church and the Catholic Irish chieftains and lords "betrayed", "sold-out," and "abandoned" Ireland and its High Kingship by submitting to Henry II and that the Catholic Church--whom he claims has always been England's ally, not Ireland's--and Irish Catholics, themselves, are supposedly "responsible" for England's occupation of Ireland and its persecution of the Irish throughout history, while he claims that it was only the "ethos of the Druidic order," the poets and brehons, who opposed this and "claimed that the land was vested by ancient rights to people of their craft." This individual's comments imply that he is a neo-pagan "Druid." So, he is implying that it was only pagan Druids (or what remained of their "ethos") who opposed the English subjugation of Ireland, while the Irish Catholics supposedly "betrayed their homeland by agreeing to the surrender and regrant system under foreign monarchs," and that the Catholic Church "betrayed" and "abandoned" Ireland and its High King in favor of Henry II of England.

In other words, he's trying to paint the pagan Druids as "patriotic Irishmen" who opposed the English while painting the Irish Catholic kings, chieftains and lords as "cowards," "sell-outs" and "traitors" who meekly submitted to a foreign king, and that the actions of Pope Adrian IV and his bull Laudibilter constitutes the Catholic Church, itself, "selling-out" the Irish Catholics to the English (who were also Catholic at the time). He also implies that Christianity / Catholicism is "foreign" to Ireland and the Irish people, and that the Irish should "return to Druidry" (or rather convert to neo-paganism / neo-Druidism), since (according to him) the Catholic Church "sold-out" Ireland to the English.

How should I respond to these allegations? I would really appreciate any help that any one can offer in tackling / addressing / answering these particular claims.

Thanks in advance.

Last edited by WJL; Feb 25, '12 at 5:51 am.