Damian Thompson on the latest resignation of a bishop

Damian Thompson reports:

Here’s what gets up my nose. I liked Kieran a lot when he was press officer for the English bishops: he didn’t give us any bullshit and let slip the odd bit of gossip. We we all pleased when he was made a bishop. Sure, he was a liberal, but they all were.

Then, shortly after taking office, he started bullying the parish of the Sacred Heart, Hove, for using too much Latin in its main Sunday Mass. I rang him up and said: this is outrageous – it’s not some elaborate Old Rite service, just a dignified Novus Ordo said mostly in English with nice music (such a rarity). The distress Conry caused by barging in and trying to wreck it was enormous and completely avoidable.

Since then traditionalist priests in his diocese have had their collars felt for worshipping in the style of Benedict XVI. Kieran would often refuse to answer letters from his clergy; but Left-wing laity slagging off traditionalists always got a sympathetic hearing. Meanwhile, the hardline liberal group Acta, opposed to the Church’s teaching on sexuality, operated with his approval in his diocese. (Here’s a furious report by an orthodox Catholic blogger.)

Now the bishop has admitted breaking his promises ‘going back some years’. Unlike the priests he was harassing, who kept theirs.


Why is it that the progressives are often the most authoritarian and clericalist when they get into power?  Yet they have no greater authority to appeal to, hence the bullying and abuse of power.

I have to confess when I read this story, my first thought was, “Well, at least it is a woman.”

Still not good. But considering Cardinal O’Brien, I am sure I am not the only person with that reaction.


This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

9 Responses to Damian Thompson on the latest resignation of a bishop

  1. EPMS says:

    Yes, one does think “at least it is a woman”. But all too often the woman in these situations was someone who came to the priest when her marriage was in crisis, looking for counselling and spiritual assistance. A completely secular therapist would be disciplined for having an affair under similar circumstances, because it is an abuse of power over someone who is vulnerable, and thus has more in common with “altar-boy scandals” than we care to comtemplate.

    • Foolishness says:

      I entirely agree. And if the pictures of the bishop with the woman show the person he was having an affair with—well, she was young enough to be his daughter. It’s a form of sexual predation and abuse of power.

  2. John F. Ambs says:

    No…you’re not the only person with that reaction. A small part of my brain actually says something like “atta’ boy” — then I come back to my senses. There really is no silver lining. All are called to celibacy outside marriage. As a Traditionalist for 36 years (read my way to the “Old Mass” when I was 14), I am very used to liberals treating orthodox believers like serfs. Generally, though, they fall…one way or another, they retire in sadness or disgrace.

  3. EPMS says:

    The latest stats for UK Catholic priests indicate that about 10% are former Anglican clergy, the large majority married, I would assume. At what point do cradle Catholics with a vocation start to protest the double standard?

    • William Tighe says:

      “At what point do cradle Catholics with a vocation start to protest the double standard?”

      What “double standard?:” and besudes, nobody can be said to “have a vocation” until and unless the Churh decides they do by ordaining them.

    • Rev22:17 says:


      You asked: At what point do cradle Catholics with a vocation start to protest the double standard?

      We have a pretty substantial number of former Anglican clergy who have received ordination in the Catholic Church under the pastoral provision, and also a considerable number of former Protestant clergy who have received dispensations from celibacy permitting their ordination in the Catholic Church. I have not yet seen a lick of protest within the Catholic Church here in the States over any of this. I rather perceive the opposite reaction — clergy, spread thin, are grateful for the additional numbers, and laity are grateful that there are clergy to serve their spiritual needs.

      So why do you perceive there to be a likelihood of protests?


  4. EPMS says:

    I meant ordained cradle Catholics. And “double standard” seems the appropriate term, or perhaps a lowered bar. I understand that American dioceses have a limit of two active Pastoral Provision priests, presumably to avoid any perception of this sort.

    • EPMS says:

      Norm, if ten percent of US priests were former Anglican/Episcopalian clergy this would be somewhere between 3,000 and 4,000 men. In fact the number is about 150. So there is little basis for comparison.

  5. Dominic Raglan says:

    Well, these liberals… They’re only a step away from digging up saints’ and bishops’ bones and dissolving them with quicklime in a mass grave that will be built over with a car parking structure.

    Getting rid of that Medieval Dark Age Church.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s