The Birmingham Three: How therefore could there have been a verdict?
Blogged by James Preece on 5th July 2010
John Smeaton writes...
What on earth are Catholics and non-Catholics to make of the situation? On the one hand three staunch pro-life, pro-family advocates suffer apparently peremptory ecclesiastical injustice. On the other hand Archbishop Nichols, just a couple of months ago, was painting the previous government's intentions on sex and relatonships education in an entirely postive light - when those intentions included continuing to enable the promotion and facilitation of abortion, contraception and homosexuality in schools, including Catholic schools.
What on earth is happening when, on the one hand, apparently peremptory ecclesiastical injustice can be unhesitatingly meted out to staunch upholders of Catholic teaching on life and the family, and, on the other hand, the appointment of a blatantly anti-life, anti-family former Member of Parliament to be deputy director of the Catholic Education Service is indignantly defended by representatives of the Catholic Bishops Conference of England and Wales?
He quotes Dr Tom Ward, corresponding member of the Pontifical Academy for Life...
Three Oratorians have been condemned to an indefinite sentence of removal after abrupt eviction from their home at Cardinal Newman’s Oratory in Birmingham.
This penalty of an indefinite sentence to widely distant monasteries is ordinarily associated with very serious moral failings. However it appears that the investigative process was incomplete before they started their sentence. How therefore could there have been a verdict? Indeed was there even a charge? These men are attested by their own authorities to be innocent, virtuous and to have done no harm. They have an almost unrivalled track record in this country of defending life and the primary and inalienable right of parents as educators of their children. They are totally faithful to and outspoken in their defence of the Papal Magisterium.
It is a scandal that these men with outstanding ability to cooperate in the defence of the authentic understanding of Cardinal Newman’s teaching on conscience have been summarily removed from the Oratory which, in the light of the imminent Papal beatification of its founder, has now become the best platform in the world from which to defend Newman and the Papal Magisterium.
Remember how Archbishop Nichols handled the Terry Prendergast situation? He said nothing and waited. It fizzled away in to the past until it seems almost obsessive compulsive to mention it. He's doing the same with Greg Pope and the exact same thing is being done with the Birmingham Three.
Bring them home.