Ste,-Some time ago there was a lively debate in THE CATHOLIC HERALD on the usage of " Father " in styling a secular priest, and Irish precedent was cited in its defence. The current Irish Ecclesiastical Record accidentally throws fresh light, surely decisive, on the question.
A Cork scholar tells the story of a Nerics of charges brougtet by a secular priest, one Patrick Cahn, against the Regular clergy in the year 1629. This Patrick Cahil appears to have been unbalanced, and his charges. when deleted to Rome S were easily disproved: but one of them is to the point in the matter of styling the clergy.
In a list of " eleven false propositions staled by Patrick (Sahli to he taught by the Regulars in Ireland." we find this " No. 6-Solis Regular/bus compel, yornri Pares:. " that is, Only Regulars are entitled to be tailed Fathers." In 1629, observe, this was classed as a " false proposition."