Father Ted legend Pauline McLynn reveals why she is an atheist

Mrs Doyle

What would Ted, Dougal and Jack make of this? Let alone Bishop Brennan!

Father Ted legend Pauline McLynn has revealed that she is an atheist after ‘slipping out of the habit’ of being Catholic.

The star who delighted fans around the world with her performance as Craggy Island housekeeper Mrs Doyle says that she didn’t have a choice about being Catholic when she was growing up.

Mrs Doyle

She also said that people don’t need religion to be kind and decent.

She made the comments ahead of her latest show, Pilgrimage: The Road To Istanbul, which sees McLynn and six other stars head to the Turkish capital.

McLynn is joined by converted Catholic TV presenter Adrian Chiles, former politician Edwina Currie, a lapsed Jew, Olympic javelin thrower and practicing Christian Fatima Whitbread, Mim Shaikh and television presenter Amar Latif, who are both Muslims and atheist comedian Dom Joly.

She told the Irish Mirror: “I was christened a Catholic but I’m a secular person.

“I was brought up an Irish Catholic at a time when the church and the state were so entwined in Ireland that you just didn’t get a choice.

“It was more a habit than a religion to the point where I realised I wasn’t practicing or anything anymore, it just meant so little that I didn’t even miss it. I’m an atheist.

“In fact, all of the talking about ‘well I like to be kind and everything’, yeah, I do as well, but I just think that’s being a decent human being.”

The three part BBC series sees the celebrities taking an ancient military route to Istanbul, which is now seen as a path of peace.

Written by Michael Kehoe @michaelcallingJoin our community