DAILY CATHOLIC     WEDNESDAY     October 21, 1998     vol. 9, no. 207

NEWS & VIEWS
from a CATHOLIC perspective

To print out entire text of Today's issue, go to SECTION ONE and SECTION TWO

POPE MAY VISIT NORTHERN IRELAND WHILE ARCHBISHOP SEEKS END TO NORTHERN IRELAND PARADE VIOLENCE

          DUBLIN (CWNews.com) - Pope John Paul II has said he may visit Northern Ireland in the wake of the Good Friday peace agreement between Republicans and Unionists. The Pope visited the Republic of Ireland in 1979, but was advised not to travel to Northern Ireland, which is still ruled by Britain.

          The Holy Father's former master of ceremonies, John Magee -- who is now Bishop of Cloyne in southwest Ireland -- said last week that he was speaking to the Pope just after the Good Friday Agreement was signed. The Pope thanked God for the agreement and added: "Now is the time for me to complete my visit to Drogheda." The bishop added that, as the Pontiff left Ireland in 1979, he promised to return, on condition that he could visit the North.

          The nearest he came was Drogheda in the border county of Louth. There he pleaded "on my knees" with paramilitaries on both sides of the sectarian divide to "turn away from the path of violence and returns to the ways of peace."

          Meanwhile in Belfast, Church of Ireland Archbishop Robin Eames said on Tuesday that he will seek a solution to the continuing problems related to the annual Protestant "marching season" in Northern Ireland.

          Archbishop Eames said he would demand guarantees of good behavior from the pro-British Orange Order which organizes a parade each year in the village of Drumcree that has resulted in violence over the past three years. The parade season commemorates military victories over the Irish Catholics hundreds of years ago. "The very term 'Drumcree' conjures up images of violence and protest," the archbishop said in a speech to a Church of Ireland convention. "It has become a cameo of the worst agonies of Northern Ireland."

          The rioting that erupted between Catholics and Protestants this past summer threatened the newly-minted Good Friday peace agreement that seeks to end the violence in the British-ruled province. Tension swept the province in July when authorities banned an Orange Order parade from going through Catholic areas of Drumcree, near the border with the Irish Republic, and ended in the death of three Catholic children killed when a gasoline bomb was thrown into their home in Ballymoney.


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October 21, 1998       volume 9, no. 206
NEWS & VIEWS

DAILY CATHOLIC

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