Thursday, 25 June 2015

Today’s society can learn from Boys Town priest

Modern society has lessons to learn in caring for vulnerable children from the Irish priest behind the pioneering Boys Town facility in the US, according to supporters of his cause for sainthood, as his canonisation process moved a step forward.
Fr Edward Flanagan, a Roscommon priest who adopted a progressive approach to running institutions for juveniles in the US, was attacked by the Irish Government in 1946 after he labelled State-funded Church-run industrial schools as “a scandal, unChristlike and wrong”.
Bishop Kevin Doran, who represented the Diocese of Elphin at a Mass in Omaha, Nebraska last week to mark the end of the diocesan investigation into Fr Flanagan’s sainthood, told The Irish Catholic that “thousands of young people have been rescued from a futile existence as a result of the vision and sheer tenacity of Fr Flanagan”.
“The perceived wisdom at the time was that troublesome kids should be locked away and Fr Flanagan’s position was that it was the environment that was bad and not the kids,” he said.
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