Dublin, Ireland, Jul 3, 2017 / 03:28 am
Besides a shortage of vocations, Irish priests are facing an even more harrowing kind of crisis.
At least eight priests in Ireland have committed suicide in the past 10 years, according to recent reports given at meetings of the Association of Catholic Priests (ACP), and many priests are sounding the alarm about a severe dip in morale and a mental health crisis among the country's clergy.
The drop in priestly morale has clergy calling for a confidential helpline to be set up for priests needing support.
At a recent ACP meeting, an attendee reiterated the request: "Our morale is affected because we are on a sinking ship. When will the 'counter-reformation' take place? We're like an All-Ireland team without a goalie. We need a national confidential priests' helpline. We're slow to look for help."