Orange Order; We believe it is in Northern Ireland’s vital interests for as many Unionist MPs as possible be returned to our mother Parliament

The Orange Order has issue a statement today urging the Unionist parties to show “unity of purpose”

The Grand Orange Lodge of Ireland recognises the critical importance and huge significance of the forthcoming General Election.

As the United Kingdom commences the process of exiting the European Union it is essential a purposeful and stable Government is elected to act on behalf of, and deliver the best possible deal, for its citizens.

Equally, it is of the utmost importance that Northern Ireland continues to have a strong voice at Westminster. The June 8 poll will once again provide the opportunity for the people to vote for, and underline their support, for the Union.

As an Institution with a broad range of political opinion across our membership, Grand Lodge welcomes any closer collaboration between the pro-Union political parties.

We believe it is in Northern Ireland’s vital interests for as many Unionist MPs as possible be returned to our mother Parliament.

In order to maximise the pro-Union vote in this election it is incumbent on our Unionist leaders and representatives to cooperate and coalesce, parking party interests and acting in the best interests of the Union.

Such strategic thinking and cooperation is all the more crucial at a time when republicanism is buoyant following its recent electoral success.

Republicans simply do not care if Northern Ireland succeeds as an integral part of the United Kingdom. The opportunity to answer their united Ireland agenda and insatiable demands will occur on 8 June. The onus more than ever is on Unionism to come together, selling its collective ideals to the widest possible audience.

For our part, the Orange Institution will continue to seek to be a catalyst, where possible, to bring unionists together on common causes or certain issues. As a major stakeholder in this Province we will always seek to do what is necessary and in the best interests of Unionism.

We would once again encourage all our members, family and friends to exercise their democratic franchise, fought for so valiantly on our behalf. In mobilising the pro-Union vote, we will also be appealing for those not already registered to vote to ensure they do so, and those requiring a postal or proxy vote apply at the earliest opportunity.

Show unity of purpose – vote Unionist on June 8.

There will be a joint candidate in North Belfast and Fermanagh/South Tyrone. With Sinn Fein entering the race in South Belfast, there will be a huge temptation to extend the pact further beyond the two constituencies.

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  • Oggins

    Alan as always, bit of common sense and not of this whataboutery guff

  • Oggins

    Who wrote the bible? The modern day bible?

  • Alan N/Ards

    I’m not sure if that is actually fair, Barney. I’m not a lover of the OO but I know people who are members and I know a number of socialist, trade unionist members of the order. In fact, I knew a member who voted Workers Party for years. A lot of the members are involved because of family connections….the sash my father wore. The order (unfortunately) is let down by its leadership and its stupid anti catholic rules. Personally speaking, I can’t get my head around the fact that they haven’t removed these idiotic rules.

  • Oggins

    Common sense unity of the good for all… Wait a minute

  • Ryan

    Katyusha, no need to panic. Unionism would not be capable of contemplating the day when this would ever happen.
    I was just wondering if I was missing something, had they got their own Trojan Horse that no one had told me about.
    Alas, it seems they are set on their course and they will not be deviating for anyone, least of all a majority of the very thing they abhor the most- the dreaded catholics……..
    Don’t you just live it here.

  • Concubhar O Liathain

    Get with the programme, NDDUP, as your leader is now speaking Irish and being uplifted by the language – even Jim Allister has tweeted in Irish. You have to realise that the Union is stronger by celebrating its indigenous culture and languages or maybe you’re a fake unionist!

  • eireanne3
  • North Down dup

    Am all for celebrating it’s indigenous culture and language, just not a full on ILA.
    I think am right in saying your a fluent Irish speaker can you send me a link telling me that more than 2 percent of Ireland speak fluent irish

  • Karl

    Irish culture is not indigenous to the union. They can take their cultural appropriation and shove it.

  • Concubhar O Liathain

    You’re letting yourself and your union down.

  • Karl

    Not my union

  • Concubhar O Liathain

    I have to await the 2021 census for complete 32 county figures. If you want to check out the figures of Irish speakers in the 26 county- go to this link:http://www.cso.ie/en/media/csoie/releasespublications/documents/population/2017/7._The_Irish_language.pdf
    It shows that 17% of the south’s population speak Irish outside the education system which is a fairly good indication of maximum level of fluency. Up to 38% of total population speak Irish.

  • Concubhar O Liathain

    You don’t know what you’re talking about.

  • Karl

    There ends that debate. You can start telling everyone else what they dont know now.

  • Am Ghobsmacht

    It’s a very ‘Irish’ state of affairs; my family’s lodge (LOL 2**) used to share instruments with the neighbouring AOH 2** (same number).

    There has been a great digitizing of history this past 20 years whereby people substitute what they believe what ‘should’ be they way of things as opposed to the way things actually are.

    Nationalists love to hear about Gaelic protestants but not about Catholics who are not opposed to the OI.

    The OI’s attitude to Catholics is mind bogglingly nuanced; I struggle with it myself and I’m an orange Lundy; an urban nationalist has next to no chance of understanding what goes on.

    NOTE; I do not include the Belfast OI in this appraisal. Nutjobs.

  • Katyusha

    2% of the population would still be around 100,000 fluent Irish speakers, ND. And it would be very strange if most Irish speakers lived in Donegal, given that the official standard of Irish was based on Connacht Irish, many of the official structures were built around the language in Connemara, and the status the language enjoys in NUIG. Donegal Irish is a bit of a hinterland dialect by comparison.

    But I remember reading that the area with the greatest number of fluent Irish speakers is actually… Dublin. I was surprised at that myself, but I guess it’s not as perceptible if they are spread throughout the city rather than concentrated in Gaeltacht areas.

  • Concubhar O Liathain

    As long as NI is part of the UK, whether or not we agree with that, and I don’t , then Irish language and culture is indigenous to the UK or Union. As long as unionists don’t embrace Irish language and culture and campaign for equal rights for Irish speakers on a par with Gaidhlig and Welsh speakers, they are undermining their – and in a sense our – union.

  • Zig70

    Not all Protestants are anti Catholic but all Orangemen are. Catholics have no respect for the Orange order. Why would they? I know folk in the orange order though for some reason they always hide it.

  • Am Ghobsmacht

    To counter his argument that SF agitated the situation by bussing in shinners from other areas you chose a scenario where shinners bussed in others to agitate the situation?

  • Am Ghobsmacht

    Is that the McDonnell shield?

  • North Down dup

    Very interesting, just read irish in Gaeltacht areas is going down and younger people in the community know it but less are speaking it , and are worried it could die out in years to come , but in urban areas it’s growing but people who speak irish in Gaeltacht areas find it hard to understand people who speak irish from the education stand point. Very confusing

  • eireanne3

    “You cross between parades, you take your life in your hands”.

    “A 58-year old woman was assaulted during a Black Institution parade in Ballymena at the weekend. Her ‘crime’ was to cross the road during a gap in the parade, which allegedly prompted marchers to assault her. During the assault, the 5ft 1 lady was punched in the face and neck and had her fingers dislocated”.

    https://sluggerotoole.com/2010/08/31/who-owns-the-roads-in-ballymena/comment-page-2/

  • North Down dup

    Orange men are Catholic

  • Croiteir

    Not the silly Anglicans are catholic claim?

  • North Down dup

    Very good , protestant equal’s Catholic but not roman Catholic there is difference

  • eireanne3

    “The Ulster Unionist Party (Official Unionist Party) was once linked to the OO”.
    And in those days NI was known as “The orange State”

    “From 1921 to 1969, every Prime Minister of Northern Ireland was an Orangeman and member of the Ulster Unionist Party (UUP); all but three Cabinet Ministers were Orangemen; all but one unionist Senators were Orangemen; and 87 of the 95 MPs who did not become Cabinet Ministers were Orangemen”.

    Harbinson, John. The Ulster Unionist Party, 1882–1973. Blackstaff Press, 1973. pp. 90–91

  • Croiteir

    Yes – cross crosslet, galley, salmon on green – Toujours Pret – the coat of arms of McDonnell of the Glens – one of the great Gaelic clans

  • the keep

    Mask slipped there sonny boy don’t have to dig to far down to see how bogus some republicans are about there equality beliefs.

  • Croiteir

    There is as they are not Catholic

  • Concubhar O Liathain

    Paintings by Thomas Ryan currently on display in
    An Chultúrlann’s Dánlann Dillon Gallery.

    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/867873072b1350077f1a0a75d1f39a316d40b56cdc46bc955b763d78023893a7.jpg

  • North Down dup

    Looks like a very proud man

  • eireanne3

    members of the MacDonnell family, originally of Scottish origins. This family descends from Sorley Boy MacDonnell, who established the family in County Antrim. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Earl_of_Antrim

  • file

    Indeed there is. Roman Catholics are not Roman Catholics either. They are Catholics of the Latin Church, one of 24 churches within the Catholic Church, the other 23 being Eastern Catholic Churches.

  • james

    Uhmmm…..

    “Speaking at a Sinn Fein conference in Co Meath in 1995, which was secretly recorded, Gerry Adams said: “Ask any activist in the North, did Drumcree happen by accident, and he will tell you ‘no’. Three years of work on the Ormeau Road, Portadown, and other parts of Fermanagh and Newry, Armagh and Bellaghy, and up in Derry. Three years of work went into creating that situation and fair play to those who put the work in. They are the type of scene changes we need to focus on and develop and exploit.”.

  • Croiteir

    They were there before Sorley Boy. Poor history.

  • Croiteir

    The castle of stones versus the castle of bones all over again, I understand the morale and optics of returning numbers to Westminster for unionism, which is the only reason to compete as far as any nationalist should be concerned, but the real battle is the number of votes, for this is always a poll on the border, and this will become more and more intense from here in.

  • Am Ghobsmacht

    Do you know the origin of the name ‘Sorley Boy’?

  • Karl

    Irish culture is not indigenous to the union and never has been. Irish is the anthesisis of the union and something it was indirectly designed to destroy by weight of cultural homogenity. The union was designed and for the British political elite as a means to control resources. It was not a union of 4 separate peoples, It was a marketing plan for english control. it was a union of commercial interests across two islands, aided by military expediency.
    The use of Irish by the OO, the RUC and other state agencies is simply cultural appropriation in the name of faux nation building.
    I have no problem with anyone learning Irish and would encourage it but the latest example of Arlene speaking a cupla focail is just cyncial electioneering and Im not buying into her schtick after 40 years of demonising its speakers.
    Her attempts now will be about control of the language to take it away from SF as a political tool, nothing more. In my opinion, all politicians should keep their noses out of it and if required and sought by the irish speaking community then parliamentary acts should be secured via european and UK equality legislation.
    If unionists politicians choose to undermine the union with their inequitable treatment of the language and its speakers all the better. If Irish speakers need an Act to keep a language alive then its in bigger trouble than I thought.

  • right_side_of_left

    ’tis

  • StevieG

    Sorry, you can say that there are “decent hard working people” in any organisation – to me it is as I stated, and if you chose to join it, then I cannot regard you as a decent person – you may have some good traits. You are choosing to join an organisation that is odious and demonstrably sectarian and bigotted – you are not forced to do so.

  • Mike the First

    When did the OO require this? And how many members do you think it has??

  • right_side_of_left

    Big Ian led the way a hundred years before, more out necessity than choice

  • Nevin

    “Republicans simply do not care if Northern Ireland succeeds as an integral part of the United Kingdom.”

    The OO’s focus here is on SF but all members of the greater nationalist family seek a United Ireland ie Northern Ireland’s removal from the UK.

  • The Living End

    Why the need for a pact in that case?

  • Croiteir

    Yes I do – is that a rhetorical question?

  • The Living End

    They may or may not ever realise it, but it doesn’t matter. The reasons for creating partition are the same as the reasons for keeping it – bigotry, hatred of all things Irish, and the innate ‘god-given’ feeling of superiority over the ‘natives’.

    No amount of legislation to protect minorities or guarantee religeous freedoms, rights to march (on the People’s Highway?), etc will ever replace these. Unionists cannot and will not agree to a UI as they would immediately stop being being ‘The People’ or the lost tribe of Judah or whatever other megalomaniacal nonsesense they come out with

  • Croiteir

    Initially the Church used the designation “Great Church” and after the Great Schism, the western Church referred to itself as Latin Christendom. The term Roman Catholic seems to have been invented by Anglican theologians to designate the Catholic Church as it became after the deformation.

  • Enda

    Did SF order buses for residents?

    The point I’m making is that they were residents, they already lived there. It was the orange terrorists who brought the battle to them.

  • Enda

    AG I’m very much aware of good relations between members of the OO and Catholics. I used to work alongside a father and son who were members, and the workplace was 90% Catholic to 10% Protestant. Everyone got on very well, and just before the hols in July, they’d be wished a good 12th.

    ‘Nationalists love to hear about Gaelic protestants but not about Catholic OI ‘non-opponents’

    The point I would make here AG is that there were Gaelic Protestants, there are no Catholic members of the OO. It’s the fraternal nature of it that makes it supremacist and unappealing.

  • Enda

    What mask?

  • Enda

    So? We are allowed to be in relationships with people from other countries are we not? If my partner was French, would that make me French?

  • Enda

    Well, they claim to be.

  • Enda

    According to archbishop Ussher of Armagh, creation happened 4004bc, 22nd Oct to be exact (however he worked that out). He lived nearly 400 years ago, so I rounded it up.

    Now if you’ll excuse me I have to go and eat some omega 3, because while I was writing that I felt myself loose a few brain cells.

  • james

    Hmm…. when did Brendan McKenneth (sp?) move in?

  • grumpy oul man

    You really should ask Catholics how well the OO gets on with them, you will find that they disagree with you.
    The oul busing in fable, is exactly that a fable.
    You probably are unaware that OO March’s have been objected too since the OO formed (there are some very good history books on the subject) long before the Provos were formed.
    The OOs links with violent unionisn has been there since it’s formation, indeed it was formed after a nasty little secterian skirmish.
    Sorry North Down, but there was no busing in although it suits your, blame the Shinners on everything, policy but unless you can prove that Gerry Adams had access to a TARDUS and time travelled then your theory sort of falls apart.

  • grumpy oul man

    Not where I lived, could I suggest you get a few books on history.

  • grumpy oul man

    So you a Protestant who lives in a Protestant area knows how Catholics fell better than Catholics know.
    That’s more than a bit offensive.

  • grumpy oul man

    Grand masters leaders of terror groups, singing secterian songs, refuse,s to talk to people who object to March’s,bands themed around secterian killers, lodges named after loyalist killers,
    Yep nothing anti Catholic in that lot.

  • grumpy oul man

    Many of those Orangemen down south, have a little Gealic,
    But your point please how in speaking Irish anything to do with a organisation which at its core anti Catholic.

  • grumpy oul man

    ” Irish Culture is not indigenous to the Union”
    You wouldn’t be posting from northern IRELAND would you.
    I wonder what culture would be indegenous to that area, do you think there might be a clue in the name.
    But hey if you don’t want anything Irish in your Union there is a solution, in a few years there will be a referendum on a UI your big chance to get rid of a non indegenous culture.

  • Am Ghobsmacht

    Naw, just a fact attack, it fascinates me, I reckon Nevin must be loaded with such trivia.

    What about ‘MacLeod’?

  • Am Ghobsmacht

    Fair play for answering such a grammatically awful sentence (fixed).

    There are no protestants in the AOH because it is a catholic fraternity and there are no Catholics in the OI because it is a Protestant fraternity.

    To my agnostic mind that is the way it should be.

  • Dan

    Yeah, stunning.

  • Croiteir

    same as McAuley

  • WiseJeffrey

    I know a several Catholics who attend orange functions in border towns.

    Thankfully not everyone is as sick as you.

  • grumpy oul man

    I see, so when did a Catholic relegious group come out and call for nationlist unity,
    How about you wise up.

  • Am Ghobsmacht

    So, when they printed ‘Erin go bragh’ on the Belfast mayoral chain over a century ago that was just a facade then was it?

  • Am Ghobsmacht

    Cobblers. In all my youth I never met one person who believed in the 5000 years baloney.

    I know they exist but their true numbers are not reflected by their over representation in politics.

  • Am Ghobsmacht

    They ARE Ulstermen btw…

  • Am Ghobsmacht

    Not all orange men are anti catholic Zig that’s a mega generalisation.

  • Am Ghobsmacht

    This is the thing that gets me;

    There is the simultaneous believe that many Catholics like orange parades but still believe that some sort of republican hivemind forces them to oppose the OI.

    If Catholics do watch orange parades then this would suggest a foot in the PR door and as such the hysterical heel digging that forms the core of most orange responses is unnecessary, themuns are clearly NOT all out to get us.

  • North Down dup

    Very true, many many of them from good ulster Scot stock

  • Am Ghobsmacht

    Aye, Viking? Son of the ugly one and son of Olaf?

  • WiseJeffrey

    I personally know quite a few Catholics who go to orange halls after attending band parades, dances etc.

    I am talking about a nationalist border town.

    As an orangeman I have sadly attended many funeral masses and make no apology for it.

    Most people are decent folk, but sadly the situation in NI forces people to vote along orange/green lines, like a game of poker, both sides afraid to flinch, all the while upping the ante.

  • WiseJeffrey

    “The oul busing in fable, is exactly that a fable”

    Weren’t 30 outsiders arrested in Ardoyne one year from Lurgan etc ?

  • WiseJeffrey

    orange terrorists……….is that like GAA terrorists ?

  • WiseJeffrey

    We could say the same about the GAA

    It is littered with sectarian catholic murderers who are “honored” with grounds and trophies names after them.

  • Croiteir

    that’s the scéal

  • Fear Éireannach

    Quite right, NI should be abolished, it causes this orange/green divide.

  • Am Ghobsmacht

    Even the ones that have no Scottish ancestry would still be Ulstermen. Its more about mentality than blood.

  • Am Ghobsmacht

    What’s a ‘scéal’?

  • Zig70

    Is it? I could say not all IRA members are anti Protestant but they sure make it difficult for you to believe otherwise. I was pressing the point on ND about respect. I do know people that I would call friends that have never told me they are in the Orange but I know they are. They seem very decent people to me but I’d just be more reserved around them. I’d imagine it would be similar with Martin McGuiness and people who came to work with/ know him in later life. I can see how people ignore the big issues like paramilitary associations and anti Irish statements and focus on the everyday low fie reality but just don’t expect not to receive a jaded appraisal.

  • North Down dup

    True

  • Croiteir

    story

  • grumpy oul man

    30 people, yep big busing in that, what year was that .
    I’m from Ardoyne and the Shinners didn’t create the protests there, they did get involved but since there is a large SF voter base and councillers in the area that’s not surprising.
    The resentment over the behavior of the OO, bandsmen and coat trailers was always there add to that the defacto curfew placed on those living along the route of the parade and Ardoyne itself at the conditions existed before the Provos.
    I’m also old enough to remember the 60s and the tension in the area during parades.
    But let’s talk about busing in shall we.
    At both Twaddle and Drumcree Orangemen and loyalists were bussed in from all over NI, many by the loyalist terror groups and the result was rioting and mayhem.

  • Reader

    Enda: A different view is one thing, forcing that view on me is something completely different.
    Do you think that everyone should have a veto on election and referendum results, or just you?

  • Reader

    james: You think that ‘demographics’ make a UI ‘inevitable’, Enda. That idea rests on the sectarian assumption that all of the Catholics in NI will have to vote for a UI.
    Alternatively, he may think that nationalism is similarly hereditary, or that it may have other deterministic features. He may even think the same about unionism.

  • Reader

    Croiteir: The term Roman Catholic seems to have been invented by Anglican theologians to designate the Catholic Church as it became after the deformation.
    “deformation” – ho, ho, ho. The old Catholic Church divided. The name is shared now – basically by those who accept the Nicene creed.

  • Reader

    hollandia: Yet, there have been unionist pacts going back to 1985, with the OO playing a primary role in them. And, rarely, is that sectarianising of elections discussed.
    You haven’t been paying attention then. The complaining starts as soon as the election is announced and continues until the next one.

  • Croiteir

    The Church did not divide, as much as those you left it like to claim, at least they are consistent in that aspect.

  • hollandia

    All parties about their opponents. That’s a given. In this instance in taking about the media. As well you know.

  • SeaanUiNeill

    While the mac Domhnaill may have, for example, provided at least two “families” of gallóglach for the Tyrone Ó Néills from earlier, the great wave of mac Domhnaill settlement in Antrim comes in the 1540/50s when their usefulness to my illustrious namesake in his campaigns against his father Conn Bacach and the odious Ferdorca permitted them to expand beyond their earlier role as mercenaries for the MacQuillans of the route. it is important to remember that in 1551 Dunluce is still regularly called “McCollyn’s howse” (MacQuillan’s house) in official papers. There they may have been before Somhairle Buidhe, but it was his initiative in seizing the opportunity that the death of his captive older brother Séamus mac Domhnaill, sixth laird of of Dunnyveg from wounds after the Battle of Glentaisie. The family of mac Domhnaill as we understand them in Antrim are very much the outcome of Somhairle Buidhe’s opportunism at this time.

  • SeaanUiNeill

    But little real footing other than under direct patronage of first the MacQuillans and then Seán Donngaileach Ó Néill before Somhairle Buidhe’s “heeling in” of the family claims in the 1570s. See my comments above.