Craggy Island Parish Hall: Very little happens in Craggy Island Parish to be reported internationally, but in this series of news reports we examine the impact that the Popes visit to the United Kingdom is having on some of the far flung outposts of Britains former colonies and Empire.
At Craggy Island Parish Hall, to coincide with the Popes first day in Britain, a 'special' spiritual ecumenical debate has been organised by to Bishop Len Brennan, to focus the Fatherhood on the meaning of the Pope's visit to Britain. So a debate has been organised by Bishop Len Brennan who has decided to give Father Dougal McGuire the chance to think about why the Pope is visiting Britain. In fact Father Dougal McGuire had hoped that Father Dougal being the simpleton he knew him as, might just pose a few simplew questions which he could easily answer!!
Two debating teams had been assembled, one debating team representing the Parish of Craggy Island, made up of Father Ted Crilly and Father Jack Hackett. and the second debating team from nearby Rugged Island Parish represented by Father Dick Byrne and Father Jim Johnson, Jack's equivalent on Rugged Island. Although Father Jim Johnson looks relatively normal compared to Jack, his personality and alcoholic habits are much the same.
The Craggy Island Parish Hall is packed by parishoners from both the Parishes of Craggy Island and Rugged Island. The 'Debate'has been advertised for weeks and the multitudes that came that night had been 'persuaded' by Mrs. Doyle, the hyperactive, repressed and somewhat insane parish housekeeper with an over the top zeal for her work. Obsessed with refreshments, Mrs. Doyle had prepared meticulously for this 'event of the year' with copious amounts of tea, cake and sandwiches. A Mass Advertising Campaign had been conducted every Sunday by both Father Ted Crilly and Father Dick Byrne in their respective Parishes.
Bishop Len Brennan made the formal welcoming address to the audience of over 300, as they were waited on hand and foot by the hyperactive Mrs. Doyle. Then Bishop Len Brennan said that he would adjudicate on all spiritual and ecumenical matters, resulting from the discussions from the two panels and Father Dougal McGuire would be asking the panel about their views on the topics that he wanted answered.
After Bishop Len Brennan's 30 minute Mass welcoming Sermone, Father Dougal McGuire came forward to pose a topic of debate to the two panels. Smiling meekly and reading from a card, Father Dougal McGuire posed the first topic;
"If the UKis a third world Country, why are the Roman Catholic Church accepting money from the UK to pay for the Pope's ecumenical visit?"
Father Ted had been reading the latest news in the local Parish News as Father Dougal had given to believe that the question would be based on the latest topics of discussion in the paper. In fact Father Ted had specifically told Father Dougal to ask an easy question from the Craggy Island Parish Newspaper. Before Father Ted could reply, Father Jack Hackett. did so instead on behalf of the Craggy Island debating team;
"Drink! Where's my brick?"
Now it was Father Dick Byrne turn to reply on behalf of the Rugged Island Parish debating team. It has to be remembered that Father Dick Byrne is Ted's nemesis, and in the past he hasoften managed to outwit Father Ted as part of their ongoing feud. It is unknown how the feud started, but Father Dougal once mentioned a "Scrabble fiasco" (where Father Byrne managed to get all of his words to spell "Useless priest, can't say Mass"). This feud has led to various ill-judged escapades, usually after Father Dick Byrne has telephoned Father Ted to tease him for some inadequacy or taunt him for some fault.
"I note that Father Jack Hackett's reply, but I don't think Father Jack Hackett has the slightest clue what he is talking about. I would even go as far as to say that Father Jack Hackett doesn't even understand the question and Father Jack Hackett is out of his depth in trying to answer this very important question. Clearly if Father Jack Hackett can't answer the question then on behalf of the Craggy Island Parish debating team, I will have to do it for him. So for Father Jack Hackett's intelligence I will give him this advice….
Father Dick Byrne was cut down short as Father Jack Hackett hit him on the side of the head with his 'debating brick'. Now it was Father Ted's turn to reply, with Father Dick Byrne laying out cold, face down on the table in front of him.
"I note that Father Dick Byrne 's reply, but I don't think Father Dick Byrne has the slightest clue what he is talking about. I would even go as far as to say that Father Dick Byrne doesn't even understand the question and Father Dick Byrne is out of his depth in trying to answer this very important question. Clearly if Father Dick Byrne can't answer the question then on behalf of the Rugged Island Parish debating team, I will have to do it for him. So for Father Dick Byrne 's intelligence I will give him this advice….
Father Dick Byrne was cut down short as Father Jim Johnson hit him on the side of the head with Father Jack Hackett's 'debating brick'. Now it was Father Jim Johnson's turn to reply, with Father Ted laying out cold, face down on the table in front of him.
"Drink! Where's my drink?"
Bishop Len Brennan had been surprised with Father Dougal McGuire question, "If the UKis a third world Country, why are the Roman Catholic Church accepting money from the UK to pay for the Pope's ecumenical visit?" As he clearly didn't know how to answer the question either he quickly decided to use Father Jim Johnson's "Where's my drink?" reply to his advantage and called on the hyperactive Mrs. Doyle;
"Mrs Doyle, I think it is time for everybody to have a break and during the interval they can have some more refreshments? Thank you to our debating team, the points raised have certainly stimulated debate and discussion."
This was clearly 'music' to the hyperactive Mrs. Doyle ears, whose whole purpose in life was serving refreshments and making cups of tea.
"Thank you Bishop Len Brennan, 300 cups of tea coming up straight away!"