Ireland – Reconciliation is OK for Northern Ireland but not for Marriage!

Up on Ration Shed; with thanks to Roger Elderidge – Ireland – Roscommon – Boyle – Knockvicar – National Men’s Council of Ireland – Chair

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A letter/opinion piece for this Sunday’s paper.


Reconciliation is OK for Northern Ireland but not for Marriage!

A Husband (Maurice Lyons) has been in the Midlands prison for 45 days. His crime? He remains faithful to the Covenant of Marriage that he made with both his wife and with God and is willing to Reconcile any differences that his wife claims to exist.

He therefore did not take part in his wife’s application for a Judicial Separation. He wrote to his wife and the court seeking a Reconciliation process but he was ignored and the court – without jurisdiction – made an order and required the husband to obey it. When he didn’t his door was broken in and he was arrested and imprisoned.

He will remain in prison until he agrees that the State is entitled to dismantle his Marriage. This he will never do.

The Husband (Mr Lyons) is a member of the Family Help and Marriage Reconciliation Group of the National Mens Council of Ireland whose motto is “doing what men have always done … protecting their Families”.

They help Spouses/parents who wish to defend the integrity and authority of their Family against any body that transgresses the Law such as a doctor, a school, the passport office or any organ of the State including the courts who involves itself in the affairs of the Family founded on Marriage without the joint power and authority of both Spouses.

If the State/Court is going to involve itself in the “deadlock” situation where one Spouse wishes to end their Marriage and the other wants it to be Reconciled it must do so in compliance with the Constitution where “The State pledges itself to guard with special care the institution of Marriage, on which the Family is founded, and to protect it against attack.”

Why then has the State not assisted the Husband (Mr Lyons) and instead put him in prison for trying to defend his Marriage?

And why is the State’s attitude to the Reconciliation of Marriages so at odds with its position on the conflict in Northern Ireland? There despite many years of the most polarised conflict and horrific violence the State saw its role as promoting the Christian virtue of the Reconciliation of parties.

The State/Court can not therefore prefer and favour the Spouse who wishes to end the Marriage over and against the wishes of the Spouse who remains firm in their belief that the Marriage can be saved and any differences Reconciled.

Christianity introduced the principle that even sinners can be saved if they repent. This explains why it was held that the terrible sins committed in Northern Ireland by any party should not be a barrier to Reconciliation work. Claims that the Marriage no longer serves their purpose by either spouse should not be a barrier to Reconciliation of a Marriage if the other Spouse is willing to make it work.

What the State/Court is doing in facilitating the wishes of the Wife (Mrs Lyons) against those of the Husband (Mr Lyons) is tantamount to the State supporting one of the parties in the North who wished to continue to be at war against any initiatives by the other parties for Reconciliation and peace.

By the Husband’s (Mr Lyons’) imprisonment the courts have corrupted the essential meaning of “right and wrong” and Christian love and forgiveness to suit the financial and political aspirations of the legal system and those running the State.

It is clear that the Husband should be immediately released and the State should compensate him for their error. The wonderful news is that if this happens it will finally put a brake on the separation/divorce industry and truly allow Reconciliation and all the benefits that flow from it.

God bless,  Roger Eldridge, Chairman, National Mens Council of Ireland, Knockvicar, Boyle, Co. Roscommon

Website:  Email:     

Telephones: 00353 (0) 7196-67138           00353 (0) 86-8180146


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