Response to Senator Martin Mansergh

Dear Madam,

Senator Martin Mansergh (11 March) does me a disservice when he states, ‘the Rev Brian Kennaway ( March 2nd) incorrectly attributes to the Church of Ireland today a philosophy similar to the Orange Order.’

The Synod resolution of 1999, which Senator Mansergh says, ‘distanced itself from historic formularies like the Thirty-Nine Articles,’ went on to state:

These historic formularies are a definition of the faith as proclaimed by the Church of Ireland, and thus form an important part of the inheritance through which this Church has been formed in its faith and witness to this day.

At Ordinations and Installations incumbents are still asked to assent to the thirty-nine articles, and must respond – ‘I assent to the thirty-nine articles of religion’  At initiation into the Orange Order the prospective candidate has read to him the Qualifications, after which he is asked – ‘Are you prepared to assent to these?’

The similarities are obvious!

Yours etc,

Brian Kennaway


County Antrim.


This letter appeared in the Irish Times on 14th March 2006