800 Babies in a Mass Grave – a Re-Post/Update


On June 2, 2014 I posted the below article concerning an Irish historian’s claim that hundreds of dead babies were to be found on the grounds of a “home” for unwed mothers run by the Roman Catholic church and staffed by nuns.  I was new around here then; the post only got 7 “likes” though it still holds my record for the most one day views ever.

Today Reuters reported that the Irish government has confirmed the facts unearthed by the historian.

“DUBLIN (Reuters) – The remains of babies, ranging from new-born to three-years-old, have been found in the sewers of a former Church-run home for unmarried mothers in Ireland, the government said on Friday.”

A report from an inquiry the government ordered in 2014 backed up a historian’s claim that up to 800 children may lie in an unmarked grave at the home. It said: “significant quantities of human remains have been discovered in at least 17 of the 20 underground chambers which were examined”.



How many of you saw the movie “Philomena”?

For those of you who haven’t it is the story of a young, unmarried pregnant Irish girl, abandoned by her family because of the “shame” she brought upon them and sent to a Catholic “home” to have her baby in secret.

The movie, based on the book “The Lost Child of Philomena” by Martin Sixsmith details the horror of the life of these girls in the care of nuns, the baby selling, cruelty, lies and deceit.

An occasional tragic situation brought on by a few bad apples?  This is the usual trope trotted out by apologists for the Irish church and “Defenders of the Faith”.

Well this week in Galway, a mass grave was discovered – in an old septic tank.

The septic tank, in Tuam, County Galway, was filled to the brim with the bones of infants.  Eight hundred infants.  The tank is on the grounds of an institution known locally as “The Home”. The Bon Secours nuns operated “The Home” between 1926 and 1961 and over the years housed thousands of unmarried mothers and their “illegitimate” children.

“The tireless work of historian Catherine Corless has revealed that 796 children, the oldest nine years, the youngest two days old, are in that tank. Causes of death include “malnutrition, measles, convulsions, tuberculosis, gastroenteritis and pneumonia”. The tank is described as “filled to the brim with tiny bones and skulls”.

“Unmarried mothers incarcerated until they signed over their babies, healthy children sold to be adopted by wealthy Americans and disabled infants, who had no sale value, abandoned in “Dying Rooms”, and their bodies dumped by the brides of Christ in a septic tank.”

“This was a nationwide industry founded on human suffering. In a country utterly corrupted by its own twisted version of Catholicism run by a complicit elite, young women who “fell pregnant” were condemned. They had sinned and were left to the mercy of perverts and brutes. Their children were a tainted commodity to be sold or discarded at the whim of people considered “religious”.

A further horror is that it seems highly unlikely this site was the only mother and baby home which starved infants and crammed their tiny bodies into unmarked graves. The dead children must number in the thousands.

Young pregnant girls were forced to work for years after the birth of their children to repay the church for taking them in.  They were hired out as cleaning girls and laundry workers.  All this while the state was paying the church for their care.

Healthy infants from these “fallen women” were sold, mostly to wealthy American Catholics.  Unhealthy, ill or babies which did not attract a buyer were starved and died of infectious disease, malnutrition of pneumonia.  Their bodies were hidden away in a septic tank.

This is the church which cares so much for the unborn

Ireland was warned in 1946 by none other than Irish born Father Edward Flanagan, founder of BoysTown in Omaha.  Flanagan, visiting the land of his birth was horrified by what he saw, denouncing Ireland’s treatment of children in Church and State care as “a scandal, un-Christlike, and wrong”.   He spoke loudly of the evils he saw and was ignored by the church and state.

Today the Irish government and the church would rather not talk at all about the “homes”.  I’ve read nothing about the septic tank save in the Irish press and blogs.  I guess 800 babies in a mass grave in a septic tank is not enough of a story for the our MSM.  Mustn’t get the right wing faithful riled up or feeling put upon.

How many Acts of Contrition would it take to cleanse the soul Father?  How long the Penance?

To paraphrase Bob Dylan, “Even Jesus would never forgive what you have done”.


photo: http://www.irishcentral.com/opinion/cahirodoherty/Galway-historian-reveals-truth-behind-800-orphans-in-mass-grave.html


P.S.  I actually saw this story on BBC America’s 5 PM news on June 5 – its about time.

About toritto

I was born during year four of the reign of Emperor Tiberius Claudius on the outskirts of the empire in Brooklyn. I married my high school sweetheart, the girl I took to the prom and we were together for forty years until her passing in 2004. We had four kids together and buried two together. I had a successful career in Corporate America (never got rich but made a living) and traveled the world. I am currently retired in the Tampa Bay metro area and live alone. One of my daughters is close by and one within a morning’s drive. They call their pops everyday. I try to write poetry (not very well), and about family. Occasionally I will try a historical piece relating to politics. :-)
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20 Responses to 800 Babies in a Mass Grave – a Re-Post/Update

  1. Lara/Trace says:

    Dear Frank, As you know, I am an adoptee. The shock and horror of this is not confined to Ireland. I wrote my memoir about what I found out about this baby trafficking here in America and abroad, and my own search for my first family. I found my dad when I was 38. This Catholic history is buried as deep as the babies.

    Liked by 4 people

  2. Pingback: 800 Babies in a Mass Grave – a Re-Post/Update – lara trace hentz

  3. I saw the news on Al Jazeera English. Like so much human behaviour, it beggars belief.

    Liked by 4 people

  4. beetleypete says:

    II not only watched ‘Philomena’, I also watched this. http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0318411/
    There are times (most of the time in fact) when my hatred of the Catholic Church knows no bounds.
    The blatant hypocrisy; the corrupted priests, the cruel nuns, the child abuse.
    And we are supposed to be worried about Muslims. What a joke.
    They are disgusting. There is no other word for it.
    If it was up to me, I would hang them all. (Sorry, but this really gets to me.)
    Regards, Pete.

    Liked by 5 people

  5. cindy knoke says:

    How horrifying.

    Liked by 3 people

  6. jfwknifton says:

    It does show, though, why the Catholic church have always maintained such a close relationship with Nazi war criminals. They are cut from the same cloth.

    Liked by 3 people

  7. dweezer19 says:

    I am broken hearted but not at all surprised….😢

    Liked by 2 people

  8. Jennie says:

    Father Flanagan was a hero. Even if his words and presence didn’t change that situation, they continue to send a strong message. He made a difference. I could tell you worse stories that happened in Italy.

    Liked by 4 people

  9. Great post, Frank! Certain people tried to make abortion a major element in the election we have just had here in the Six Counties (Northern Ireland). Fortunately, people simply ignored that and voted to give Arlene Foster a well-deserved dig in the gob. Stories like this just show the utter hypocrisy of traditional Catholics. Foetuses have rights, apparently, but babies, children and their mothers don’t.

    Liked by 4 people

  10. This is such an important post, Frank. Unimaginable cruelty. I see someone has already mentioned “The Magdalene Sisters,” a 2002 drama that highlights the experiences of three teenage girls sent to an “asylum” for “wayward girls.” Here’s a link to the film in case anyone is interested: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t0aMLkfV84w.

    Liked by 3 people

  11. jfwknifton says:

    There was a report about this in yesterday’s newspaper. No pain killers in childbirth. It’s the Lord’s punishment. All the babies put together and then left to die basically…very much a Warsaw ghetto approach. And they announced that digging has started at a further 19 sites.

    Liked by 4 people

  12. beetleypete says:

    I have tried to calm down about his. But it didn’t work…

    Liked by 1 person

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