I have this to say to Father McManus.

He tries to get politicians to condemn Rev Gray for saying the Mass is blasphemy. That shows his opposition to freedom of speech. As an ex-Catholic, I cannot shake off the feeling that if Catholics who know their religion well and properly had the power they would suppress religious freedom as they did in the past.

If Rev Gray is wrong go and talk to him about it.

The assertion by McManus that the Catholic Eucharist is one of Christ’s most sacred commands is disingenuous for many historians think Paul invented the Eucharist or imagined a vision of Jesus telling him to implement it. Plus Paul said the cup was the new covenant in the blood of Jesus and did not call it the blood of Jesus. Catholics say it is really the blood of Jesus. How the change from wine to blood can happen is based on the notion of creation out of nothing - another concept that cannot be proven to be taught in the Bible.

As for the agreements between Catholic and Protestants on the Eucharist, they are not a justification for saying Gray is wrong. There are still huge problems. The Catholics think the Protestant ministers are not really ordained and so their services are not really the Eucharist. Also, as for justification by faith alone, the big difference is that for Protestants you cannot lose your salvation by sinning for once saved by Jesus always saved while for Catholics you lose any admission to Heaven by using contraception, and a host of other trivial “sins”. The agreements are nothing compared to the differences.

Rev Gray is accused of hate. But Gray attacks nobody directly in his letter. The Christian faith believes in hating the sin and loving the sinner so as long as Gray attacks the Mass which he thinks is a sin he is not to be accused of hate speech. In fact accusing him of hate is hate.

Before McManus accuses people who oppose the Mass of hate, maybe he should give evidence that the Mass in the big picture heals sinners? This evidence is lacking with all the disobedience to the Christian faith among Christians and the warmongering and lies. Some people seeming to heal is not enough. And do you have the right to blame the recipient of Holy Communion for not changing for the better when it may be the case that they are depending on a medicine that does not work?

“Interested folk in Washington and in the US Congress will be watching to see if the two top unionist/Protestant leaders in Fermanagh condone the Rev Gray's anti-Catholicism.” That line is just scaremongering insanity.

The moral is that Rev Gray is as good as the rest of us and probably respects most people of faith and none. If he is wrong about the Mass, it does not matter that much. It does not make him a bad person who should be intimidated by the likes of Father McManus. If say Muslims found it offensive that they could not get communion from Father McManus, would he care?


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