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Iona Documents

Legal Opinion: The rights of a mother and father in light of the proposed referendum

If we pass the marriage referendum as the Government wants, it will have profound changes on how we view the family in our law. A major legal opinion commissioned by The Iona Institute examines this question. It shows that our ability to give preference to motherhood and fatherhood in Irish law will be severely and probably wholly undermined.

The opinion by Michael Collins SC and Paul Brady BL examines the Constitution, and in particular Article 41, called ‘The Family’, in the light of various rulings by the Supreme Court. 

It shows that the constitutionally protected right to marry is also a constitutionally protected right to have children. The right to marry therefore is unavoidably linked to the rights of children.

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About the Iona Institute

The Iona Institute promotes the place of marriage and religion in society. Our starting point in debates about the family is that all children deserve the love of their own mother and father whenever possible. We believe in publicly-funded denominational schools. We also promote freedom of conscience and religion.

The Iona Institute is headed by religious and social affairs commentator, David Quinn.

Religious Education and Human Rights 

What does national and international law have to say about the rights of parents who want their children to attend Church-run schools? Read on to find out.

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Recent and Upcoming Events


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Dr Richard Rex will ask whether 'Wolf Hall' by Hilary Mantel was fair in its portrayal of Saints Thomas More and John Fisher.

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The Future of Denominational Education

Prof Eamonn Conway and Dr Ken Fennelly will discuss 'The Future of Denominational Education' on Thursday, Oct 15, 2015. The talk will be chaired by Dr Martin Mansergh.

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