Well, Holy God: My Life as an Irish, Catholic, Agnostic Correspondent


Patsy McGarry

In Well, Holy God, Patsy McGarry, the Religious Affairs Correspondent for The Irish Times since 1997, gives a personal account of growing up in the Catholic Church and of a faith lost when the stark realities of that Church became apparent to him.


August 2024

ISBN: 9781785374968 Categories: , , , ,


As the Religious Affairs Correspondent of The Irish Times from 1997, Patsy McGarry reported on some of the most troubling scandals to have rocked both Catholic and Protestant Churches in the last few decades. In Well, Holy God, he looks back not only on his time in journalism, recalling some of the most distressing stories he has had to cover, but also his own history with Catholicism and of a faith lost when the stark realities of being part of that Church became apparent to him.

This book covers the gamut of his career, from the horrors of the various clerical child sex abuse cases, the vilification of Bishop Eamonn Casey and the muted reaction the Church of Ireland to the violence at Drumcree, to the role of women in the Catholic Church and the tragedies of the Mother and Baby Homes and the Magdalene laundries. Alongside accounts of such seismic events, there are lighter anecdotes, including the perils of travelling with a pope, some characters he’s met along the way and a look at the good that those with a true calling can do. Well, Holy God is a memoir brimming with personality, charting the highs and lows of a truly fascinating career.

1. In the Beginning …
2. A Grand Metropolis
3. Mary’s Bridge Too Far
4. A Painful Case
5. The Fugitive Bishop and His Son
6. Heraclitus
7. Insurance and a Medieval Monk
8. Icarus
9. Drumcree, O Drumcree
10. An Irishwoman Abroad
11. Travels with the Pope
12. Roman ‘Justice’
13. Among the Best
14. Mná na hÉireann

Patsy McGarry was born in November 1952 in County Roscommon. Following a spell in teaching and then radio in Dublin, he became the theatre critic for The Irish Press. In 1992 he won a national media award for political coverage in the Sunday Independent on the fall of Charles Haughey. In 1993 he began working for The Irish Times and in 1997 became Religious Affairs Correspondent. He has published a number of books, including Christianity, While Justice Slept: The True Story of Nicky Kelly and the Sallins Train Robbery and First Citizen: Mary McAleese and the Irish Presidency.