Priest and Protestant to lobby Congress on British collusion

Posted By: December 31, 2019


                McCord to be back again with Fr. Mc Manus on Capitol Hill

Raymond McCord, Sr. and Fr. Sean Mc Manus in front of White House, 2009




CAPITOL HILL. Wednesday, January 1, 2020. In May 2009, the President of the Capitol Hill-based Irish National Caucus, Fermanagh-born Fr. Sean McManus, brought legendary victims’ campaigner Raymond McCord, Sr. to Washington, DC, to highlight the case of McCord’s son, Raymond, Jr., who was murdered on November 9, 1997, outside of Belfast. Because those associated with the murder were British Government agents and police informers, the murder has been covered up.


Fr. McManus escorted Mr. McCord around the halls of Congress introducing him to many key Members of Congress—and obtaining a commitment from the then Chairman of the House Subcommittee on Human rights, Congressman Bill Delahunt, to hold a Congressional Hearing on the murder and cover-up of young Raymond. And, then, Fr. Mc Manus brought him and Mrs. McCord (young Raymond’s mother) back for the Congressional Hearing which was held on October 22, 2009 —


That Congressional Hearing, together with the report by the Police Ombudsman for Northern Ireland, powerfully exposed to the world British government collusion in the brutal murder of Raymond McCord, Jr. (Operation Ballast: investigation into the circumstances surrounding the murder of Raymond McCord Jr. Nuala O’Loan. January 22, 2007.


And now, again, the Irish National Caucus is bringing Raymond McCord, Sr. back to Capitol Hill —Sunday, February 9 until Sunday, February 16, 2020—to be escorted around Congress by Fr. McManus.


The alliance of a Belfast Protestant Unionist and a well-known Fermanagh priest— who has for years been raising in the United States Congress the issue of British collusion in murder and human rights violations— made compelling impact on Congress. Fr. McManus simply says:” Ecumenism and reconciliation are at their truest and best when Protestants and Catholics not only pray together but also work together for social justice. One of my favorite quotes is from the American Protestant Scripture scholar Walter Brueggemann, ‘In Biblical faith, the doing of justice is the primary expectation of God.’ And the official teaching of the Catholic Church is:’… Action on behalf of justice [is] a constitutive dimension of the preaching of the Gospel…and [a constitutive dimension] of the Church’s mission for the redemption of the human race and its liberation from every oppressive situation.’ (Justice in the World. 1971)”


Mr. McCord, Sr. said: “The Unionist politicians, including David Trimble and the Rev. Ian Paisley, refused to meet me or speak out after the murder of my son, and they both ridiculed and rejected the Ombudsman’s report. (Paisley did meet me briefly nine years after my son’s death). The two leaders of Unionism refused to meet a Unionist father whose son was murdered (as does the current DUP leader, Arlene Foster).  They didn’t even offer sympathy or support or visit our house or attend young Raymond’s funeral. They betrayed my son, family, and my community. In fact, the only well-known person to come to my aid was Fr. McManus.”


Mr. Mc Cord concluded: “I don’t want pity. I want truth and justice. Every impediment to my quest for justice is because of the continuing cover-up by the State. Every obstacle created by the State causes me more delays. Young Raymond has never even had an inquest in over 22 years since his death. The Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI) and the State—if they can get away with it— have no intention of bringing those responsible to face justice. That’s how Northern Ireland is for many victims. But I am not quitting; I will never cease my campaign for justice for my son and for all victims from both communities. And that’s the message I am bringing to Congress, with the help of Fr. McManus. I am deeply grateful for his enduring support, and for that of Congress, and of Irish-Americans in general. And let me stress this: Achieving justice for victims, also, greatly strengthens the Irish peace process.” END.