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Religious Divisions in Ireland Central to all the major rituals of the life cycle, and marking the passing of the seasons with harvest or watch-night services,

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Presentation on theme: "Religious Divisions in Ireland Central to all the major rituals of the life cycle, and marking the passing of the seasons with harvest or watch-night services,"— Presentation transcript:

1 Religious Divisions in Ireland Central to all the major rituals of the life cycle, and marking the passing of the seasons with harvest or watch-night services, [churches] represented a central aspect of a rich and vibrant culture, even for those who rarely entered their doors. 1Created by SBW-K

2 Background Major changes in institutional religion had already taken place at the beginning of this period. Churches were deeply involved in influencing and directing the social and moral lives of their flocks. They also provided leadership in the political arena, supporting or challenging proposals for constitutional change. While there were many rich and distinct areas of secular cultural activity, religion also had a major impact on leisure time and intellectual activities. At the end of the period, as political movements helped shape expanding nationalist and unionist traditions, cultural life in Ireland became sharply divided along religious lines. 2Created by SBW-K

3 Geographical Component However, the most important aspect of the religious make-up of Ireland remained the concentration of Protestants in the North-East. Although their majority in the nine counties of Ulster as a whole was minimal (they were, in fact, in a minority in Donegal, Cavan, Monaghan and Fermanagh), they were particularly strong in Antrim and Down. The decline of southern Protestantism was well under way even before the First World War. The geographical trends in religion affected, and were affected by, wider trends in the political, social and cultural arenas. 3Created by SBW-K

4 1870 Census Religion% of Irish Population Catholic76.9 Anglican (Church of Ireland*)12.34 Presbyterian9.2 Methodist8.0 Baptists, Brethren, Quakers>1.0 The Church of Ireland is an Anglican province of the Church of England. The church identifies as both Catholic and Reformed. [4] Within the church, differences exist between those members who are more Catholic-leaning (High church) and those who are more Protestant-leaning (Low church or Evangelical). [5] For historical and cultural reasons, the Church of Ireland is generally identified as a Protestant church. [6] The Church of Ireland is the second largest Christian tradition in the Republic of Ireland [7] and the third largest in Northern Ireland.CatholicReformed [4]High churchLow churchEvangelical [5] [6]Republic of Ireland [7]Northern Ireland 4Created by SBW-K

5 Gladstones Irish Church Act of 1869 The Disestablishment of the Church of Ireland (1869) Census 1861: 11.8% of population belonged to the Church of Ireland. Church of Ireland was the established church. They received tithes (taxes) from everyone including Catholics and Presbyterians. The Catholic Church called for the end of the priveleged position of the Church of Ireland. 1869: Gladstone introduced the Disestablishment Bill into parliament. It contained the following provisions: – 1. From January 1st 1871, the Church of Ireland would become a voluntary body (not State). – 2. Legal connection between Church and State in Ireland was severed. – 3. Church property was confiscated and gievn to a Commission who would take over the payment of the clergy and teachers who had been in the employment of the Established Church. – 4. A land clause gave tenants on Church land a chance to buy their holdings with a loan for three quarters of the amount. 5Created by SBW-K

6 The Roman Catholic Church After the Irish Church Act in 1869: Disestablishment affected all religious institutions in Ireland and while Catholics rejoiced in the ending of Anglican privilege, the loss of the Government grant to Maynooth seminary was a less satisfactory consequence. Members of the Catholic hierarchy were also disappointed in their hopes for a redistribution of original church lands which had become the property of the Established Church in the course of the Reformation. However, this was, in the main, a period of continued growth and consolidation for the Irish Catholic Church. Held in high regard by the majority of its community, its income and place in society was secure. Religious life in towns, and increasingly in villages and rural areas, was centered on the chapel. The Ne Temere decree issued by the papacy in 1908 insisted that the children of mixed marriages should be brought up in the Catholic religion. This ensured that Protestant-Catholic relations continued to be tense in this area. 6Created by SBW-K

7 Politics & Religion Anglican (Church of Ireland) Loyal to the Church of England the Queen of England, who was not happy with the separation of church and state. Roman CatholicFollowed the teachings of the Pope, but the papacy was not thrilled with the latest turn of events. Irish Parliamentary Party PresbyterianSaw the separation of church and state as a threat to Protestantism MethodistMajority of societies and churches were based in Ulster. Irish Methodists, like most evangelicals, remained convinced that the Roman Catholic religion was the primary cause of all other Irish problems 7Created by SBW-K

8 Religious Troubles Lead to Political Troubles 1600s England takes control of the island of Ireland Catholics are majority population and live mostly in the southern areas. Standard of living is low because Anglicans owned much of the land there. Protestants are the minority population and live mostly in the north eastern area. Standard of living is high. Early 1900s Home Rule issue Want complete independence from Britain Feared living in an independent country dominated by Catholics Guerrilla warfare breaks out Irish Republican Army (IRA) British forces and Unionists 1920 Irish Free State Agreement Independent from Britain, known now as the Republic of Ireland 6 counties in north (includes Ulster) to be known as Northern Ireland and part of United Kingdom But wait… 8Created by SBW-K

9 Theres more… 1960s – 1990s The Troubles IRA and other groups fight for a unified Ireland British forces brought in to squelch riots 1994 Peace talks Sinn Fein (political arm of IRA) Brits still in N. Ireland and controlling 1995 US gets involved in peace talks based on agricultural, tourism, and health crossover matters 2001 Ceasefire fails Elementary students and their parents are stoned by Protestant youths leaving school. Act most likely fueled by Marching Season, which commemorates past victories against Catholics Seesaw Politics: Government suspensions and reinstatements, disarmaments on and off, apologies. But situation is still holding… 9Created by SBW-K

10 Webpages Cited ture_ ture_ p/teachers/emma-okelly/386- disestablishment-1869-and-gladstones-first- land-act p/teachers/emma-okelly/386- disestablishment-1869-and-gladstones-first- land-act html 1.html 10Created by SBW-K

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