Pope is challenging Church to change gear – Archbishop Diarmuid Martin

06 Oct 2013

The Archbishop of Dublin has said Pope Francis is challenging the Church to change gear from “renewal to near revolution.”

In a wide ranging address to a conference on Religious Education this weekend, Archbishop Diarmuid Martin said, “I feel that it is still very difficult for many of us to comprehend fully the change that Pope Francis is advocating in the life of the Church”. He said, “The way of Pope Francis is not about tweaking our way of living and of transmitting our faith, it is about thinking in a totally different manner.”

Addressing delegates at the National Religious Education Congress held in Mater Dei Institute in Dublin, the Archbishop said  religious education received in school can never for sufficient for adults to live their faith fully in today’s world. “I would say that today we have a heightened awareness that the religious education that is received in school will – no matter what its quality – never be sufficient for a teenager leaving school to live his or her faith fully in the complex world in which we live today.   Religious education is not routine; religious education is not a fixed given therefore life; religious education is a lifelong project.”

Archbishop Martin said faith formation should address, in an adult fashion, the challenges which adults have to face in today’s world.  Adult faith formation, he said, was not just about organising courses.  He spoke of faith formation “a dialogue between faith and the realities of the world which responds to the real challenges of modern life in Ireland and helps the Christian to live the realities of his or her faith in a mature way in a changing society and to impact society through the contribution of faith.


  • A full copy of the address is attached and is available here