Dublin priest receives standing ovation after saying he is gay during Mass
A priest in Dublin received a standing ovation from his congregation as he came out as gay after his sermon where he called for same sex marriage equality in Ireland.
On Saturday past Fr Dolan confided in his parishioners during Mass and also on the Sunday morning.
He called on his congregation to support same sex marriage in the upcoming Irish referendum at the end of May.
He said: “I’m gay myself.”
The statement was met by applause and a standing ovation from his “proud” parishioners.
Speaking to the Irish Sun, community youth worker Liz O’Connor said: “We are all very proud of Fr Martin. Because he has admitted that he is gay he doesn’t change the person that he was before it.”
The priest is currently on a pre-planned holiday and will return to his parish soon.
A source within the Catholic Church told the Sun: “He had the break all planned before all this came out in case people think he is running to the hills.
“He was just doing his service, it was part of his homily, and that’s it.”
Ms O’Connor said the congregation would not like to see Dolan leave his parish.
The Dublin Archdiocese declined to comment until they had spoken to Fr Dolan directly.
A referendum on same sex marriage will take place at the end of May 2015.
It was only a matter of time before an Irish priest in the Roman Catholic Church chose to reveal the fact that he was gay. The fact that this happened with Father Martin Dolan as part of his homily at the Parish Mass in Dublin serves to demonstrate the power of private conscience over the dictates of the Church, in a matter which posits the necessity of a new policy of openness towards those in the R.C. Church who happen to be gay.
Fr. Dolan’s congregation obviously applaud their parish priest’s willingness to put his own vulnerability on the line, on an issue with which he feels intimately concerned. As an ‘out’ cleric, he has a clear vested interest in disabusing his congregation of misconceived notions about the reality of same-sex relationships. His advocacy of Same-Sex Marriage is probably founded on the fact of his knowledge of faithful, monogamous couples in his own parish, whose cause he feels duty-bound, in all honesty, to support.
It will be interesting to see how his diocesan bishop, and the hierarchy of the Roman Catholic Church in Ireland deals with this situation. No doubt, the ‘Belfast Telegraph’ – which gives us this report – will be first off the block to report progress.
Father Ron Smith, Christchurch, New Zealand