There was a strong reaction to this priest's words on last night's Late Late 5 years ago

There was a strong reaction to this priest's words on last night's Late Late

"Finally, a priest that talks sense."

Fr Joe McDonald was a guest on last night's Late Late Show on RTÉ and gave viewers an alternative take on the Catholic Church.

The Ballyfermot-based priest appeared to promote his new book, Why The Irish Church Deserves to Die, and spoke about welcoming gay people into the church.

"They (the church) have used words like evil and disordered and so on and priests listen to those words and say we know what they meant, and we do... the problem is how it's heard.

"If all we can offer to the young gay man and all we can offer to his parents is fear and censure... then we should shut up - we should get off the stage.

"I want people to know that in St Matthew's in Ballyfermot, and other churches, they are welcome, they are welcome to be an active participant part of the community. We're supposed to love and cherish them."

Fr Joe also shared his story of sexual abuse, having been victimised by a local priest who was over the altar boys and a number of kids' activities while growing up in West Belfast.

He explained how he and other victims were taken advantage of by the abuser.

"It went on for three or four years, from the age of seven or eight.

"I think the manipulation of it is extraordinary... There were two of us that were abused by him. He used to say to me: 'if your mother knew about this, she'd die'.

"To my friend, he said 'if your father finds out about this, he'll kill you'. If he said to me: 'your father will kill you,' I'd laugh - my father wouldn't kill a fly. That was the cleverness of it and that's how he shut us up."

Those watching at home clearly found Fr Joe's attitude refreshing.