General Synod Fringe Event – Saturday 13 May 2023

The Very Revd Maria Jansson

The Very Revd Maria Jansson

Changing Attitude Ireland is delighted to announce that we will hold a fringe event at General Synod on Saturday 13 May 2023 at 1:15pm. The speaker at this lunchtime event will be The Very Revd Maria Jansson, formerly Dean of Waterford. The title of Maria’s talk will be ‘The Way Forward?’.

Since her appointment as Dean of Waterford in 2011, Maria has garnered strong support and notoriety for her liberal views, her community-based approach to giving advice and leadership, and her strong oratory skills. Maria has referred to herself as a “warrior” woman, expressing her loathing for how religion can be narrow-minded, conceited and cruel. Her belief is that faith helps people to flourish, helps people during times of upheaval and great change, and gives moral direction when people are drowning in a sea of confusion.

Hitting out at religion headed by fanatics, Maria says religions like that, which can often hide all the issues of a person’s life, do not have the sticking power or quality of a thinking faith. Speaking out against messages of supremacy and homophobia, she said this offensive thinking needs to be challenged and it is indicative of a religion that does not survive. Reflecting on her own faith and her own experience of a thinking faith, she disregards the “lazy reading of scripture” which takes things at face value and instead suggests that faith and the word of God has evolved over time. Christ never stood up and humiliated someone on the grounds of their humanity. Why do you need a scapegoat to make you feel holy?”

Addressing anyone who has felt excluded from the church by reasons of sexuality or otherwise, Maria says “celebrate your humanity, you are loved by God. Sod it. Stand up and stand proud. If your local church has a lunatic in the chancel, move on.” Maria has vowed to be an “enormous thorn” in the country’s religious leadership, meaning there will never be a case of the Dean going quietly into the night.

The event will be held in the McCarthy Suite, Clayton White’s Hotel, Abbey Street, Wexford. The cost of the event is €9 to include lunch and refreshments. For further information, please contact or call +353 83 065 4984.