Bringing Light to Ireland’s Stolen Children

St. Scholastica's Student Newspaper
The Cable
By: Jordyn Kirk  - Student Journalist -
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Nothing is more heart-warming that the amazing true stories of mothers trying to find their children who were adopted out. In 2009, journalist Martin Sixsmith brought light to the story of Philomena Lee, and Irish woman whose son was adopted without her knowledge by the sisters of the Abbey that she was working at. The original story is titled "The Catholic Church Sold My Child," and can be viewed online at

Sixsmith wrote a novel about Lee in 2011, which is titled The Lost Child of Philomena Lee. The film itself, is simply titled Philomena.

"Philomena was one of thousands of Irish women sent to convents in the 1950s and 60s, taken away from their homes and families because the Catholic Church said single mothers were moral degenerates who could not be allowed to keep their children," Sixsmith wrote.

The children were marketed as orphans and sold overseas to American couples.

Judi Dench took to the screen portraying Lee, and Steve Coogan portrayed Sixsmith. The pair worked amazingly together onscreen, acting out characters that are deeply complex and amazingly real. Nothing about their performance seems "faked."

Garnering a 92% critical rating on Rotten Tomatoes, the film is obviously had an amazing start. It was an Oscar Nominee for Best Motion Picture, as well as Best Actress, Best Original Score, and Best Adapted Screenplay.

The film originally debuted November 22, 2013, but was recently been screened at theaters due to the Oscars, which took place on Sunday, March 2, 2014.

Philomena is an amazing screenplay that seems to start out as a comedy, telling the story of Sixsmith's search for a new story after his career at the BBC took a downward spiral. However, once Sixsmith meets Lee, the film goes from drama to comedy, and hooks the audience from the beginning.

Simply put, Philomena is a film that was certainly worthy of the Oscars, and stands as a great retelling of a true story.