Liveline tries to make sense of the Palmarians

Carefree: Bridget Crosbie in her late 20s. During the Swinging Sixties she worked in hotels in London and the Channel Islands but a decade later her life took a different outlook

Bridget Crosbie in her late 20s.

Dialogue Ireland  has been helping families for over two decades who are dealing with the issues which Liveline addressed today. First it is not a Religion. In Ireland we continuously confuse a Religion with a denomination or Confession of a Religion. In this case we are dealing with the Christian Faith and the question is what category does the Palmarian Church fit into? It not only claims its view of Catholicism is the right one but in fact believes itself to be the Church founded by Christ. So logically it believes the Catholic Church as we know it is is not the true Church and they are. The dress code is a way to to create boundaries which reinforce their uniqueness and keep their members under undue influence. Family members have to get a fancy dress kit in order to gain access to the family member. In other words the effects are likely to be felt by thousands of children who have lost contact with grandparents, sons and daughters who are totally isolated. The effects are deep depression loss of familial ties and the natural succession of family identity and resources are taken over by this Church. It breaks up families and the results for future generations are very grim. We have heard how as one partner dies the spouse is joined to another Palmarian family and so when the house is sold the proceeds go back to the group. Most people were very much taken by surprise by the reports of the death of Bridget Crosbie.

Above you will find our archive on this group but let it be a wake up call to another movement which claims to be Catholic under Christina Gallagher called the House of Prayer. The same horrific stories of lack of communication are being played out all round Ireland but after a process of working with the Catholic Church to address these issues, Dialogue Ireland have been forced to admit defeat as the most recent attempt to communicate with them resulted in a complete refusal to engage. So on the one hand House of Prayer group claims to be Catholic but the Catholic Church does not recognise them. Unfortunately, their claim is hollow as the Archbishop of Armagh has a priest from his diocese going to Achill every week giving support to this terrible scam.

Here is where you can find out more:

See the exact parallels above and ask how would you respond to this story from 2008? We have had people with exactly the very same issues coming to us but after a 3 year process we have had to admit defeat working with the Catholic Church.  Cardinal Brady sat on this issue for over a decade but just before he retired he agreed to meet to discuss this issue. However, the very month he had agreed to meet he  retired saying he could find no problem with his priest or the  House of Prayer. We felt his successor Archbishop Eamon Martin would address the issue. However, at a crunch meeting in Dundalk earlier this month it became clear he was not going to do anything. So we will have to embark on another strategy which hopefully will result in closure for the families.

RTÉ – Liveline
Joe Duffy talks to the Irish public about affairs of the day.
Palmarian Church

30 November 2015
Listeners tell us about family members who’ve been drawn to the Palmarian religion. It’s a controlling religion and the restrictions that apply to members include not being allowed to wear shorts, nor being able to read books or vote in elections.

A religious picture in the window of the house in Faythe, Co Wexford where the body of the elderly woman was found

The house at the Faythe in Wexford town, where Bridget Crosbie lay undiscovered for two months

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