Sunday, January 25, 2009

Fr Vincent Twomey refuses to debate at UCC

Theologian refuses UCC debate invite over decision on stem-cell research

A FORMER professor of moral theology at St Patrick’s College Maynooth has turned down an invitation to take part in a debate held by the UCC Philosophical Society on Monday January 26th.
Fr Vincent Twomey said it “evidently supports the policy of your university to allow stem-cell research on human embryos which, of its nature, involves the killing of children in the earliest stages of their development”.

The invitation last Tuesday said the motion for debate would be “That this house would allow homosexual couples to adopt” and that society members would be delighted if Fr Twomey was willing to speak in opposition.

Fr Twomey said: “I gather that you hosted a ‘debate’ on this topic soon after the governing body announced its decision [to allow stem cell research at UCC] by a majority of one.

“At that debate one of speakers, I gather, was Dame Mary Warnock, the main advocate of destructive experimentation on human embryos in Britain.

“You boast of her as one of your patrons.
“Such ‘debates’ are but exercises in propaganda and with no concern for the truth . . .”

He continued: “Just as I am not prepared to be associated with any debating society that would embrace Nazi or Marxist ideology, so too I am not prepared to be associated with a philosophical society that supports the killing of children even for the most noble of motives.”

A spokesperson for the UCC Philosophical Society was unavailable for comment yesterday.

Source: The Irish Times Sat 24th Jan 2008.


  1. Fr Twomey, the Former just prefers to lecture as he once did at Maynooth.
    Whatever happened to Vatican II's call to dialogue with the 'modern' world? Or fortitude and standing up for the good and the true? Is this refusal to debate at UCC a brave act of principle or a craven act of cowardice? We can't know his subjective motivation in this instance.

    His repeated espousal of 'prudence, prudence' was never anything more than a codeword in his lexicon for silence in the face of opposition. In my opinion, he was always an apologist for cowardice and silence especially when the occasion demanded that he speak up.
    Where are all the priests that he taught, publicly standing up for the truth of the Gospel in Ireland today? They aren't exactly jamming the airwaves and filling up the TV stations of RTE and TV3.

    Instead of open debate, Fr Twomey always preferred to surround himself instead with similar minded flunkeys - who can hear, repeat and do what he says. So propagating the same clique culture in turn.
    Maybe I'm wrong but that is my opinion.

  2. Speaking this week in Toronto, Archbishop Chaput said:

    "I like clarity, and there’s a reason why," began the archbishop. "I think modern life, including life in the Church, suffers from a phony unwillingness to offend that poses as prudence and good manners, but too often turns out to be cowardice. Human beings owe each other respect and appropriate courtesy. But we also owe each other the truth -- which means candor."

  3. Fr. Twomey has proven by his many brilliant contributions on T.V. & Radio ( usually comprised of the standard " packed " panel - one loony liberal ; one loony feminist ; one less than objective chairman ; & Fr. Twomey providing the voice of rationality/common sense ) that he is more than willing to debate with the un-informed/knee-jerk mob. On this ocassion he was absolutely correct in not giving credence to a spurious/infantile debate.