The Iona Blog

Religion had a positive effect on mental health during lockdown

By Dr Angelo Bottone

The benefits of religion to mental health are well documented and its positive impact during the pandemic has been confirmed by a number of recent studies. Covid-19 has had a profound effect on our lives. Significant moments such as baptisms, first communions, weddings, were postponed due to the restrictions imposed by the government. Many could...

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Some good news on the pro-life front in the US

By Dr Angelo Bottone

Some good news from the US; a new law in Texas bans abortion from six weeks of pregnancy.  This is a so-called ‘heartbeat law’ because it is at six weeks or so that the foetal heart starts developing and beating. The law, which will still allow terminations in case of medical emergencies, was signed in...

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The Catholic Church already does plenty to help the homeless

By Dr Angelo Bottone

Minister for Housing, Darragh O’Brien, has asked the Catholic Church to consider providing some of its land for the purpose of building new homes and helping to alleviate the housing crisis. But the Catholic Church does lots to help the homeless. A brief trawl through the ìnternet easily establishes this. For example, some of the...

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Afghan Christians were in a very difficult situation even before the Taliban

By Dr Angelo Bottone

Now that the Taliban are back in power Afghanistan, Christians and other religious minorities can expect to be treated appallingly. But even before the Taliban marched into Kabul again, the country was already a very hostile place for Christians, which is one reason for the tiny number there. Afghanistan has always been among the countries...

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Christianity is the antidote to the meme undermining our education system

By Mark Hamilton As the new school year looms, the expectation of parents is for a return to near normality, including busy workplace demands – and the last thing they want is more hassle. But if it is a good education they seek for their children, then a lot of ‘hassle’ on their part may...

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Advice of doctors may have a big effect on abortion numbers

By Jim Stack

The abortion ratio in Ireland varies greatly by county. What is the explanation for this? Is it under-reporting in some counties, population density (in many countries, there tends to be a higher percentage of abortions in cities), or is there another reason? One possible explanation is the type of pre-abortion counselling women receive. In some...

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New study finds Catholic pupils and teachers being subjected to bullying

By Dr Angelo Bottone

Practising Catholic students and staff members are sometimes targeted for bullying in Irish schools, according to a major new report. Teachers see evidence of pressure on students to hide their religion. A survey of 214 Religious Education teachers, conducted by the National Anti-Bullying Research and Resource Centre in Dublin City University, found that students of...

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Violent persecution of Christians continues unabated and underreported

By Dr Angelo Bottone

The Covid pandemic has obscured almost all other news, but even before the outbreak one story garnered far less attention than it deserves, namely the violent persecution of Christians in many parts of the world, not least in countries like Nigeria, and increasingly in the Tigray region of Ethiopia where a war is raging. Over...

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Ireland’s rising number of divorces will harm children

By Dr Angelo Bottone

There was a huge increase of applications for divorce last year. It was the highest number since divorce was introduced in 1997. There are many reasons why we should be worried about it, not least because children affected by parental divorce have a higher risk of developing a variety of difficulties. The 29pc increase in...

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Almost half of practising Catholics have returned to Mass post-lockdown says new poll

Almost half of practising Catholics have returned to Mass post-lockdown says new poll but fear of Covid still a big factor among those who have not come back yet 56pc of Mass-goers think First Holy Communion ceremonies should take place again A new Amarach Research poll commissioned by The Iona Institute shows that 46pc of...

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