Anarchism and Religion

Anarchists traditionally have a hostile attitude to religion, summed up by the slogan 'No Gods, No Masters'. As often as not this is reinforced by the alignment of organised religion with capital and the state.

Rock falling on priest

Anarchism and Religion
The popular stereotype of anarchists' relationship to religion is that we are all priest-killers and church-burners. This is, as is usually the case with mainstream representations of anarchism, almost completely false.

Religion & belief
We believe that people should be empowered to be in control of their own destinies. That means opposing the power of the churches.

Anarchism & Religion
WSM position paper


Church power in the south... [1991]
The Catholic church in Ireland has always been massively supported by the State and allowed a huge say in the running of the country. This article will attempt to cover the facts of church power in Ireland and the long history of State support beginning hundreds of years be fore the establishment of the 26 county state\

Catholic church seeks state aid for child abuse! [1993]
THE CATHOLIC Church is looking for payment in return for sexually abusing children! Right up to the 1960s young children from Catholic orphanages in Britain and the six counties were shipped out to Australia. There the boys, some as young as eight years, were used as almost slave labour by Catholic farmers and the Church itself

Child molesters & Churchmen [1995]
When the case of Father Brendan Smyth, the paedophile priest, came out, the whole country was revolted. Here was an unrepentant child molester, carrying out sexual assaults on hundreds of children over a period of forty years, with the full knowledge of the Catholic Church.

Divorce Victory: Clerical Power Weakened [1996]
In the past few years, issues concerning the family and the place of women have been at the centre of Irish politics - in part because Catholic church thinking has long dominated these areas of life in Ireland. Things first began to change for the better in the early 1970s when women began to fight back against Church rule.

Employment Equality Bill [1997]
The Employment Equality Bill effectively gives schools and hospitals which are controlled by either of the churches the right to discriminate on the basis of marital status, family/parental status, sexual orientation, race, religion or membership of the Traveller Community

Church sells off The Secret Garden [1997]
There has been a Community Training Workshop in the grounds of All Hallows College for the past fifteen years. The workshop takes most of its trainees from the prisons and the probation service. Their landlord (the Catholic Church) has sold the land the workshop is on to a private housing developer

Irish taxpayers to subsidise clerical rapists [2002]
PRIESTS, nuns and Christian Brothers beat, molested and raped thousands of young children who were sent into their "care". Education Minister Michael Woods signed a deal whereby the state will pick up the bill for all compensation.

Dunboyne Sacking - Union Failed To Act [2002]
This dismissal raises many questions for teachers about the role of religion in Irish primary education. Even further it raises serious issues for INTO members about the failure of the union to defend its members from bullying and intimidation by the unaccountable 'owners' of the schools in which we work

Clerical rapists and the Irish state
Given all that we now know about the organised cover-up of what happened in Catholic institutions, churches and hospitals it is fair to say that if any other organised group were guilty of the same offences there would be charges brought of "conspiracy to pervert the course of justice".

Why are they still running our schools? [2005]
It's taken decades for the mask of evil to finally be fully exposed. The report by the inquiry into child sexual abuse by pervert priests in the Ferns diocese has at last exposed the suffering endured by huge numbers for people.


Hijab: lifting the veil
Standing up to religious oppression or state racism? Ultimately we believe that people should have the freedom to dress whatever way they like. This means freedom from state interference and freedom from religious interference in how one should dress.

The trouble with Islam
The September 11 attacks, the Afghan war that followed from it and the ongoing war in Israel/Palestine have once again raised the issue of Islam in the minds of many anarchists in Ireland and Britain. Not just because of the role Islam has in shaping those conflicts but also because militant Islam has become a far more noticeable presence on solidarity demonstrations.

The final victory will be the people's
An interview with Farzad, an Iranian Dissident in Exile in Ireland.

2 Years In Jail For Criticising Islam
Text of a letter recieved by the WSM from the Workers Communist Party Of Iraq.


Red and Black Ireland

News of Anarchism in Ireland

The Ainriail mailing list carries the latest news from the WSM and the struggles anarchists are involved in. There are never more then 10 posts a week (and normally only 2-4). We post printed articles to it shortly after they are published.

More details!

Print out and distribute this PDF booklet by clicking on the image below

The Orange Order pamphlet

PDF booklet: The Orange Order & sectarianism in Ireland

Articles include

  • The Orange Order - an enemy of ALL workers
  • The Protestant working class
  • Time to stop beating the Orange Drum
  • Marching to nowhere
  • Stirring Up Sectarian Hatred
  • King Billy Revisited
  • The 1798 Rebellion and the Orange Order
  • When the Falls and the Shankill fought together
  • Peace deal offers sectarian war or sectarian peace
  • Neither Orange nor Green


Check the publication index for more recent articles