Orange Divided Spotlight


Orange Divided

Examining the controversy surrounding an Orange Order complaint against UUP leader Tom Elliott and Danny Kennedy for attending the funeral mass of Ronan Kerr.


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Remembrance Day is a significant date in the Orange Order Callander

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and its members of paying tribute to those who died in war and

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conflict. We are here Mac today to remember

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the fallen and pay tribute to those who paid the ultimate truck - Max

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sacrifice, Protestants, a Roman Catholics and those of any faith.

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But the Orange Order pozmack historic views on Catholicism

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continued debate. According to the brawls of the Orange Order, the

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Orangemen must oppose the fatal - marked the doctrines of the romance

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that -- the Roman Catholic Church. But when Monica became one of the

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fallen, murdered by Republican dissidents, whose death caused

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widespread revulsion and United the community. The G A A, of which he

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was a member, and the police took turns carrying his coffin. The

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funeral was attended by the First and Deputy First Ministers. Also

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them acquire the Ulster Unionist leader Tom Eliot and his senior

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call-up - my colleague Danny Kennedy. As Orangemen, they might

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have been expected to stay away from a Catholic service but perhaps

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as a sign of how modern Ireland has changed would put their desire to

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one of Monica first. - Mark Blake puts their desire to on a Roman

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curve. I do not think it is a sin to go to the funeral off somebody

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who served in my constituency. Mac in Fermanagh, Tom Elliott

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pozmack home county, clerical access book Women To was symbolic

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of a new generation, looking to the future. He was a young man who held

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on to his culture but could see the way Northern Ireland was heading

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and he joins the PSNI and he was fingered for that. Despite the

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shared grief of the funeral, which employs some Orangemen condemned

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men Mac for attending the mass. The criticism was followed by official

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complaints which meant they faced being thrown out of the Orange

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Order. But tonight we can reveal that Sandy Row was not be on the

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lodge to complain. Almost a dozen letters of concern were received.

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We pray for the PSNI and all putting their lives at risk from

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IMAX security. The Orange Order expressed its sympathy to the

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family mac family. I repeat that According to its role, and orange

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man cannot participate in an act of Roman worship. The reason for this

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is a view the mass as blasphemous. In a recent article in the border

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macro's newspaper, its grand chaplain called the mass a mockery

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of common sense. And now we come to the lovely part of the Eucharist

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were we offer our gift to God. They've become the body and blood

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When the priest says the way for will become the actual flesh of

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Christ, in that sense we do not believe as Protestants that that

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happens in the service. I have no problem with the Orange Order

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holding whatever beliefs they want to hold but applied to have a

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problem with them at judging the central act of worship in my face.

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And using awful words like blasphemous. It absolutely makes me

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totally dead and sad inside, because I do not think that is

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respectful, I do not think it is of this era. But not all Orangemen

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take the view that they cannot attend the mass. Some believe that

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as long as you do not participate there is no harm in being present

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to pay respect. This is Tyrone MLA Ross Hussey, who also went to the

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murdered men' funeral mass. -- man's. I went to pay respects to

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the mat -- the family of a murdered police officer and I think anybody

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in the same circumstances would see no logical reason why I should not

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have done. I was proud to be there as a former police officer. We have

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learnt that Ross Hussey is not alone in his views. Lord Trimble

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was once the hero of Orangemen after he helped negotiate our way

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down their Garvaghy Road in 1995. - - a way. But when he was Ulster

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Unionist leader he also faced the threat of being expelled from the

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order when he went to two masses for the victims of the Omagh bomb.

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It was absolutely clear once that terrible event had happened that I

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should go. There are circumstances when it is one's duty as a gritters

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-- Christian and even as a politician to go to services in

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other churches. No complaint was made against Ross Hussey and he

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believes Sandy Row Orangemen should examine their own actions and not

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those of his party colleagues. should look to their own conscience

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and their own Christian values. This was a man who died serving his

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country. I can't see the logic of the complaint. Of course, for those

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who do not share the Order's views of the Mass, this may seem very

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strange. But to Orangemen it is vitally important. Here is the

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crucial point. Stars attending a mass mean you are participating in

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it? -- dos attending. The official line is clear, once you cross the

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threshold of a church you are taking part in it blasphemous act.

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A Roman Catholic funeral Mass or a Roman Catholic wedding mass is in

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the first instance an act of worship. That is what it is.

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Therefore, unless you're going to worship you have to ask yourself

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why am I there? But David Trimble and Ross Hussey say they were in

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the Catholic Church as a mark of respect, not to participate in the

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mass. I attended an act of Christian worship, I did not

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participate in the Roman Catholic communion. The Lord's Prayer is

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said in a Roman Catholic Church and in the Church I went to add my

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mother's knee. Did you feel that going to the mass had any

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implications be a Protestant faith? No. Why? It doesn't. I was there to

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show respect to the deceased. It was an entirely appropriate context.

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Last month, Tom Elliott's Lodge of Fermanagh and dank -- Danny

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Kennedy's Lodge held a hearing into the complaint. At the secret

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meeting in Portadown, both politicians and members of Sandy

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Row were present to put their case. Tom Elliott and Danny Kennedy had

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hoped this would clarify that the rule on participation does not bar

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and orange man from attending a mass. -- and Orangeman. Do you

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think the role will change in some way? I think it will be clarified

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and it will be a landmark judgment. But the counties decided the case

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was not proven, giving no clarification on the role of

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attending Mass. -- that rule. Over 40 years the -- 40 years ago the

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Orange Order was told that members could attend after Phelim O'Neill

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and RJH Cramsie attended a mass. This is a legal opinion that the

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Orange Order sort back again. It reveals that as senior barrister

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took the view that the wording about participating in a mass did

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not ban an Orangeman from going into the mass, it only was a ban on

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participating. But when we asked the deputy grandmaster about this

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legal opinion he still insisted that Orangemen are not allowed to

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attend Mass. Are you aware of the legal opinion

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from 1967? It says that the rules do not say that you cannot attend.

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An Orangeman should not countenance by his presence or otherwise any

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act or sermon of Roman Catholic worship. I think in plain man's

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English that is clear enough. has been the perception but

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according to this legal opinion it is the wrong perception. I do not

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agree with it. As a former lawyer, David Trimble says this rule on pot

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is a patient is a bad role in more ways than one. I think it is

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deliberately ambiguous because the Orange Order at might get

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difficulty getting agreement on a clear of rule, but they should have

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a rule that makes it clear. tonight spotlight can also revealed

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that the threat to expel Danny Kennedy and Tom Elliott has not

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gone away. There is a pit -- an appeal against the "not proven"

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decision. This is Sandy Row Lodge parading in Belfast two weeks ago

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on Reformation Day, a celebration Some observers believe the

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complaint exposes another divide between what is in some cases a

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hardline wing of the Order in the towns and cities and a more

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moderate outlook in Green Cross Code Man areas. Jon Tongue, the

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author of a recent book on the Orange Order, believes the division

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is mocked. The Orange Order is divided. In rural areas they are

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benign and charitable. In urban areas, there is a harder line. They

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have lost a lot of members, so they are more hardline.

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But a lot of what goes on in the halls is so sure. At this event in

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the countryside outside Lisburn, old-time dancing classes take place

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to a well executed beat and it is a scene repeated up and down the

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country. Brian Kennaway is a former convenor of the Grand Lodge of

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Ireland and has also written about the Orange Order. He says many

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people in the countryside have adopted a different attitude to

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their hard line counterpart in the towns and cities. People in rural

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Ulster, like Tom Eliot, they take an ambivalent attitude and feel

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that, well, it is a mark of respect and I should go to the funeral or

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mass for my friend. That would present no real difficulties.

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former republican prisoner, Sean Murray now works to result parading

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issues. He says his view of the Orange Order, collared by

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experiences of contentious marches in Belfast, changed when he

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accepted invitations to parade in the countryside. I found it a very

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rewarding experience because it gave me another insight, another

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image of what Orange Order's represent. It did not present any

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threat to me. But the key division in the Order is not between town

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and country. It between modernisers who wish to add that the

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organisation to the 21st century and Conservatives, who believe

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change is a threat to their core religious beliefs. And tonight we

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can rebuild this division goes to the heart of the Order. Even

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splitting its seven senior chaplains. We know that four of

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them, including Alastair Smith, do not believe that Orangemen should

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go to Catholic Mass. The roles were revised in 2008. There was no

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attempt whatsoever to change the rules, their top that suggests to

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me that in fact this is a fallacy. This is something that has been

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blown out of all proportion by a few. However, Spotlight has learned

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that a letter demanding a review of the Rolls has been drafted. --

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roles. It is being voted on tonight in Tom Kennedy's area. That is one

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of the problems of the Orange Order. It is split between modernisation

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and the traditionalists. There are debates whether they should be the

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branded, whether they should liberalise. The Orange Order is not

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split asunder, but there are serious divisions. It will not

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cause a split. This perhaps is part of the fear, that if they deal with

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that issue, it will cause a split. But by not dealing with it, they

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are haemorrhaging. Whether the issue will cause a split is not

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certain. What is clear that two high-profile figures in a political

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party feel unable to speak out. We asked Tom Eliot and Danny Kennedy

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several times to speak about their feelings on the mass brawls. But we

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-- mass brawls. We know they want to see it change.

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Why is it that you are effectively gagging Tom Eliot and Danny Kennedy

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and will not let them talk to us? Every organisation, when there are

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issues to be discussed, appoint a spokesman to discuss the matter and

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I am the guy in the hot seat today. I have been asked by the Crown

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officers of the Grand Orange Lodge of Ireland to be the on this

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particular issue. But you are stifling other Orangemen. It is not

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for the World at large. It has to be dealt with internally, within

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the family. So what happens now? Brian Kennaway says it's a question

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of whether the modernisers are prepared to force it through the

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roles on attending Mass. There is this opposition to change.

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One of the proverbs that are quoted his medal not with men that are

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given to change. Any threat of change is seen as a compromise and

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so it is difficult to pursue change at that level in the Grand Order.

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The majority would have been sympathetic to change, but it is

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just getting the courage to stand up and say that and produce the

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change. But there are those who feel the debate should be less

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about modernisers and traditionalists and more a matter

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of common sense. Do you think there will be a difficulty because you

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had a broad church wing and an evangelical wing? A I would not

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lose those terms. I do not think that is the right-eyed dichotomy.

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The few a person of principle, then you add here to your principles.

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if you are a person of principle then you will stick to your

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principles. Anyone can express a private opinion. If they want to

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test the water, test the water. We are a democratic organisation and

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we are willing to discuss things. We have nothing to hide. It is here

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and take Grand Lodge officers meeting that Orange Order at

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Business is discussed. They like to do things in private, but for the

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first time, they have allowed a camera into one of their meetings.

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I need to check if I have some devotional responsibilities. Some

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commentators suggest that behind closed doors, or Grand lodges are

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walking a tightrope between the modern and conservative wings. --

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the Grand Lodge. They claim that whilst it is preoccupy papering

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over the cracks, it is failing to adapt to changing times.

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biggest threat to the Orange Order does not come from expansive Roman

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Catholicism, it is from secularism. People are moving away from

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religion. The Orange Order and need to stay relevant in a society where

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we are less God-fearing than in the past. It is one of the problems of

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the Orange Order in the 21st century. They have identified their

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own enemy and they are fighting their own battle. They still see

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the enemy as Catholicism, nationalism, republicanism. The

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real threat is secularism and the modern society. For those hoping to

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see a modernised Orange Order, the fundamental problem remains. A

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recent survey of Orange men show differing of public people.

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majority of Orange Order members believe that it is anti- Roman

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Catholic Church. It is difficult to escape that charge. The Orange

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Order was set up partly to oppose the false doctrines of the Church

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of Rome. It says it is the responsibility of Orange Order

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members to treat Catholics with respect. Ultimately, we do not like

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your church, but we treat our Catholic neighbours courteously.

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The challenges which modern life posed to the Order were underlined

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last month by the announcement that the better that rain will now be

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allowed to marry a Catholic. It was probably no surprise that the

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institution last weekend protested against this decision. The problem

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for the audit is that whilst in his life to the Crown, it does not

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allow its own members to marry Catholics. But again, the Orange

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Order plays down the development. do not think that does present a

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challenge to the Orange Order because, of course, the monarch

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will still be a member, be required to be a member of the Church of

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England. That is not going to change. There is a problem though.

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You can have a monarch married to a Catholic... A I am saying from a

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political point of view, that scenario you are describing is very

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far from ideal. -- IM. So you still give your loyalty to the monarchy

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is married to a Catholic? position within the Orange Order is

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we support the monarch being a So what does the future hold for

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the Orange Order? There are fewer young people joining the Order.

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Overall, numbers are down from 100,000 in the 1960s to around

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35,000 today. Whilst they are seen to be many who look to the order

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for their social life, the rules on Catholicism, the negative images of

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the Order and the advance of secular life have all been blamed

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for the fall in membership. Grand Lodge has tried to address this by

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turning the 12th into a friendlier tourist attraction and the Order

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has a Skene reaching out to Catholic schools. -- a scheme.

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But it is clear that at the top, attitudes to the mass remain

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unchanged. At fact that was made clear when the Grand Master spoke

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to us on Remembrance Day. Grand Master, a word. And for that first

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time, he publicly revealed his stance on attending Mass. Have you

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:26:11.:26:11.

been into a mass yourself? I have not. Could you explain why it not?

:26:11.:26:17.

Well, the reason I do not vote and mass is because of the theological

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:26:27.:26:30.

differences between the Roman Catholic faith and a were faith. --

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and our faith. Does that caused problems for you, in terms of your

:26:35.:26:39.

friendships with a Catholic? Not a tour. We have a healthy respect for

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each other. And you do not feel it is disrespectful not to go to the

:26:44.:26:50.

mass? I do not. What about other Orangemen who go it into mass?

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there is up to them. I am not prepared to answer for them. They

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have to answer for themselves. Would you like to see things

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changed to reflect that? It is an internal matter and I am not

:27:09.:27:13.

prepared to discuss it. But don't you pick it is an idea to change

:27:13.:27:23.
:27:23.:27:26.

the rules. It is up to our membership. But Father D'Arcy it

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says -- says removing a ban on Orangemen going into mass would do

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more for the Order than any PR exercise. I say if you can change

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it, do so as soon as possible. Shaun Murray says that his view is

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echoed by Republicans. Changing the mass a role could be the first

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small step towards dealing with issues such as contentious parades.

:27:54.:28:00.

I think it is incumbent on the Orange Order to make us understand

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exactly what the Order is and what it represents an what represents in

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a modern society. But Alastair Smith says it will be an internal

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matter Orangemen alone. He suggests that things will not change easily.

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If people want to express concern about the ball, they have an

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opportunity to do so. -- about the roles. Remember, our qualifications

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are based on God's Word and God's work does not change. For Ross

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Hussey and other Orangemen the message is clear. A I say to them,

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I was right to go. So you would risk expulsion again? If someone is

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prepared to lay down their life for the people of Northern Ireland, I

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am prepared to go to the funeral, but I hope I never have to do it a

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gain. So what of the Orange Order's role on participation in the mass?

:29:08.:29:12.

In the last half a century, 66 Orangemen had been expelled for

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going into a Catholic Church and over 200 have been forced out for

:29:16.:29:24.

Stephen Dempster examines the controversy surrounding an Orange Order complaint against UUP leader Tom Elliott and colleague Danny Kennedy for attending the funeral mass of murdered Catholic policeman Ronan Kerr.


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