What would a Humanist Ireland look like?

It would begin with children. Every child in Ireland would have equal access to his or her local national primary and second-level State-funded schools. None would be discriminated against because he or she was not baptized. How shameful it is that in 21st-century Ireland that that still remains the case! And, staying with children, in…

Denis Green, Marist priest, RIP

 A man whom I loved, Denis Green, Marist priest, died on Wednesday night 6 October 2015. He will be buried today. He was the priest whose distinctive, lovely voice forms the backbone of my RTE Radio One Documentary, From Belief to Unbelief. He was with me when my father died in 1981. He helped me…

Thinking for yourself

At pretty much every wedding that I conduct, I will say that Humanism is about thinking for yourself and caring for people, that it is about reason and compassion. And I am often struck that some religious people sometimes feel that they think I am getting at them. Why is this? I suppose it’s obvious…

Highs & lows of interviews

We learn by our mistakes. I have been privileged to tell my story of my journey from religious faith to unbelief in the media in recent months. First, there was my RTE Radio 1 documentary, From Belief to Unbelief, which was shortlisted for a prize at the New York Festivals world radio awards. There was…

20 seminarians joined in 1980. 17 have since left religious life

I don’t think I ever mentioned here, or provided a link to, the excellent article written by John Meagher of the Irish Independent when he interviewed me last October about my journey from belief to unbelief. It was published the date that the RTE documentary From Belief to Unbelief was first broadcast. You can read…

Atheist Priests/’Oh Me of Little Faith’

Atheist Priests Here is the essence of my article about atheist priests and clergy that was published 3 March 2013 in The Sunday Times: ‘Oh Me of Little Faith’  (http://www.thesundaytimes.co.uk/sto/news/ireland/article1223820.ece) Joe Armstrong talks to the priests who feel trapped in their ministries – because they dare not tell their flocks they have become atheists While…

Father Flannery, the Vatican and the Taliban

Father Tony Flannery was told by the Vatican that he could only resume his priestly ministry if he agreed, amongst other things, that women should never be ordained as priests. In light of the so-called Catholic Schools Week designated for next week 27 January to 3 February, are we to take it that children, especially…

Overwhelming feedback from my RTE documentary

I’ve been overwhelmed by the feedback to my documentary From Belief to Unbelief. Here, in no particular order, is an arbitrary selection of just some of the feedback. Sorry if I haven’t included yours hear. I just wanted to give a flavour. ‘Just listened to documentary.  I was knocked out by it.  I was shaken…

Richard Dawkins Foundation promotes Joe Armstrong’s documentary

The Richard Dawkins Foundation for Reason and Science has promoted my documentary on its website, and provides a direct link to the RTE Radio 1 website where you can listen to the 40-minute audio story of how three guys who joined the Marist Fathers’ seminary in Dublin in 1980 transitioned through insight, personal crisis, realization…

Happy unbeliever

I’m glad I no longer believe in God. I’m glad I’ve given up that foolishness, that escapism, that childishness. Adults accept the real world as it is: they re-wire their brain if they’ve been thought to believe in gods and leprechauns or the tooth fairy. Now is good. Live it and enjoy it to the…