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20 APRIL 2013 2.90 | Est. 1840
The Pope and the rabbi



PLUS: Sara Maitland - dont let doctors turn bereavement into a mental illness
Reform club - Robert Mickens on the new pontiffs advisers - and what they mean for the Vatican
Ties that bind and divide - Linda Woodhead, John Milbank and Steve Chalke debate gay marriage
Abraham Skorka talks exclusively to The Tablet
about his friendship with Francis that could
transform Catholic-Jewish relations
20 April 2013_Cover 17/04/2013 18:45 Page 1
20 April 2013
n what may turn out to be a momentous change in way the
Catholic Church is run, Pope Francis has announced that
he is assembling a team of eight cardinal-advisers to assist
him, including helping him reform the Roman Curia.
Some of them were among the Curias most forthright
critics in the discussions that preceded the recent conclave,
and none of them is technically from the Curia itself. This
move represents a highly significant rebalancing of forces
within the government of the Catholic Church, and may pave
the way for a form of representative Cabinet-type government
instead of the model of an absolute monarchy that many
believe has gone beyond the end of its useful life.
The Popes intention appears to be to translate into action
the Second Vatican Councils desire for a realignment of
forces within the Church that has remained largely theoretical
over the last half-century. So far, most of Pope Francis actions
have been symbolic of his much less grandiose interpretation
of the personal role of the papacy than all recent Popes have
followed, and he has now given that style of approach some
embryonic structural shape.
The new team of eight will not meet as such until the
autumn, though it is said the Pope intends to begin consulting
them individually immediately. What is more significant is
that they have been carefully chosen so that virtually every
part of the world is represented, and in most cases by men
who have themselves been selected for leadership positions by
their episcopal colleagues. Thus the European representative
is the German Cardinal Reinhard Marx, who is president of
Founded in 1840
the Commission of the Bishops Conferences of the European
Community and hence can speak for the Catholic hierarchies
of Europe. Similar qualifications and a similar democratic
mandate apply to most of the others.
This shifts the balance of power in the Church in favour of
national or regional conferences of bishops. They have hitherto
suffered from lack of status as a result of the ruling by the then
Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, as head of the Congregation for
the Doctrine of the Faith, that episcopal conferences had no
theological significance. They were mere collections of bishops,
and their theological weight was merely the sum of their parts.
If they have now been recognised as key components in the
Churchs new architecture, that may go a long way to incor-
porating the idea of episcopal collegiality at the heart of the
Church. The Vatican II decree Lumen Gentiumdeclared that
the primary responsibility for the government of the Church
lay with the college of bishops with the Pope at its head. Hence
the Curias role should be as a civil service answering to the
college of bishops headed by the Pope, not to govern the bishops
on behalf of the Pope which has been the pattern so far.
This is where putting together a team of eight to advise
him, and reforming the Curia, are two parts of the same
project. If the team is really the beginning of Cabinet
government under a constitutional papacy, particularly if
the principle of subsidiarity is also to be followed, then the
Curia will have to be reshaped and scaled back to provide
appropriate structures. Clearly a period of upheaval has begun
in Rome, with implications worldwide.
he public funeral of Baroness Thatcher was an unusual
challenge to the British genius for great ceremonial
and religious occasions. It required that the marking
and mourning of her departure from this life should
be separated from the political controversy around her legacy
and philosophy the separation of Margaret Thatcher the
person from all that is represented by the word Thatcherism.
As the Bishop of London, Richard Chartres, put it in his
sermon: The storm of conflicting opinions centres on the Mrs
Thatcher who became a symbolic figure even an ism. Today
the remains of the real Margaret Hilda Thatcher are here at
her funeral service. Lying here, she is one of us, subject to the
common destiny of all human beings. Indeed, the tolling of
the funeral bell as her coffin arrived at St Pauls Cathedral must
have reminded many present of the words of a former dean of St
Pauls, John Donne: Therefore send not to know for whom the
bell tolls, it tolls for thee. The star of the show, in effect, was
Death, the great leveller, in whose presence all political storms
must subside, all knees bend in prayer to plead for mercy.
This was the true significance of her own decision, nearly a
decade ago, to have a traditional Christian funeral rather than
a memorial or thanksgiving service. She wished to be
commended to the mercy of God, before whose Judgement
Seat she was destined to stand, in the hope of resurrection.
Roman emperors were required to listen to the words
memento mori remember death as they rode in triumph
after great victories. A Christian funeral has to remind the
entire congregation of that common destiny they share with
the deceased. In her choice of service that also seemed to be
her wish, preferring the stark message that in the grave there
is nothing more that fame, power or wealth can do for you.
The bishop recalled that Baroness Thatcher had referred,
in a sermon of her own, to the Christian doctrine that we are
all members one of another, expressed in the concept of the
Church on earth as the Body of Christ. From this we learn our
interdependence and the great truth that we do not achieve
happiness or salvation in isolation from each other but as
members of society. That seemed to be the fruit of her mature
reflection on the controversy she once stirred up with her
famous remark there is no such thing as society, which she
afterwards felt had been misrepresented.
The origins of her funeral service go back to the planning
done under the Labour Prime Ministerships of Tony Blair
and Gordon Brown, which provides some protection for the
current Prime Minister, David Cameron, against the criticism
that the event was excessive and an unjustified expenditure of
public money. The military component of the event, though
carried out with the usual dignity and skill, was the one
discordant element because it focused attention too much on
the Falklands campaign as if that was the defining moment of
her political life. But it was noticeable that the Church of
England, through the Bishop of London, had the last word on
a matter that had created much tension between them at the
time by not even mentioning it.
02 Tablet 20 Apr 13 Leaders_Leaders 17/04/2013 18:34 Page 2
4 Francis reform club Robert Mickens
The Popes appointment of a group to study how the Church is
governed is a radical move, argues our Rome correspondent
6 Jews now have a good partner in the Vatican
Isabel de Bertodano
A leading Argentinian rabbi tells us about his friend Jorge Bergoglio
and a relationship built on humour and mutual understanding
8 This was no just war Ivor Roberts
As Iraqis prepare to go to the polls, a senior diplomat who
supported the war explains why he was falsely persuaded
10 Ties that bind and divide
Linda Woodhead, Steve Chalke, John Milbank
Over the issue of same-sex marriage, British Catholics are split
between the desire for equality and the belief in difference
20 April 2013
20 APRIL 2013
Elite group chosen to help Pope govern
Bishops first meeting with Pope Francis
Capping housing benefit is treating the
symptom while blaming the victim
Anyone having trouble after a major loss
can be deemed mad and can be treated
A Very Personal Method: anthropological
writings drawn from life
Mary Douglas (ed. Richard Fardon)
Cruel Crossing: escaping Hitler
across the Pyrenees
Edward Stourton
Binocular Vision
Edith Pearlman
Archbishop Justin Welby: the road
to Canterbury
Andrew Atherstone
Laura Gascoigne
R.B. Kitaj: Obsessions
Robert Thicknesse
The Firework-Makers Daughter
Mark Lawson
The Low Road and Molly Sweeney
John Morrish
The Prisoners
Top row:
Bottom row:
Ossa, Pell,
Photos: CNS
03 Tablet 20 Apr 13 Cont_P3 contents 17/04/2013 18:41 Page 3
Francis reform club
The new Popes unprecedented decision to create a commission
of cardinals to study how the Catholic Church is governed has
been seen by many observers as a response to recent Vatican
scandals. But it is a far more radical move than that, as analysis of
his choice of commissioners shows
evolution does not easily
come to mind when we
think of the papacy. Those
words appeared in the open-
ing lines of a book that Archbishop Emeritus
John R. Quinn of San Francisco published in
The Reform of the Papacy: the costly call to
Christian unity (Crossroads, New York) was
a response of the former president of the US
bishops conference to John Paul IIs 1995
encyclical, Ut Unum Sint, in which the late
Pope asked Christian leaders to help him find
a new way of exercising (papal) primacy.
Archbishop Quinn said that, similar to the
Second Vatican Council, the encyclical was a
revolution. As he writes in the book, For
the first time it is the Pope himself who raises
and legitimises the question of reform and
change in the papal office in the Church. But
nearly two decades later, no such reform or
change has been seriously discussed in Rome,
let alone put into motion.
Pope Francis may have just changed that.
In an announcement last week that should
not have come as a complete surprise, the
new Pope sparked fresh hope that reforming
the way in which the Bishop of Rome exercises
his global ministry was now back on the
agenda. The Holy Father Francis, taking up
a suggestion that emerged during the general
congregations preceding the conclave, has
established a group of [eight] cardinals to
advise him in the government of the Universal
Church and to study a plan for revising the
apostolic constitution on the Roman Curia,
Pastor Bonus, said a communiqu on
Saturday from the Vatican.
Most commentators interpreted this almost
exclusively as the Popes response to the
VatiLeaks scandal the launching of an oper-
ation to clean up the corruption, careerism
and inefficiency that the leaks highlighted in
the Churchs central bureaucracy. The pundits
even suggested that what prompted him to
take such action was a large, top-secret report
drawn up by three elderly cardinals who
investigated the scandal. Only Francis and
his predecessor, Benedict XVI, have seen the
classified dossier.
However, this seems to be a simplistic read-
ing of the new initiative and one that overlooks
its more radical or, as Archbishop Quinn
would say, revolutionary intention; that is,
fundamentally to change the way the
Universal Church is governed. More profound
thinkers have read the Popes creation of a
group of advisers as a bold new step towards
fully implementing a model of ecclesial gov-
ernment evoked by the Second Vatican
Council one that is less centralised, more
collegial and based on the principles of
What Pope Francis has announced is the
most important step in the history of the
Church of the last 10 centuries and in the 50-
year period of reception of Vatican II, said
the noted church historian Alberto
Melloni. Writing in the Milan daily Corriere
della Sera, he said the Pope had created a
synodal organ of bishops that must experi-
ment with the exercise of the consilium. In
other words, shared governance of the Church
between the Bishop of Rome and all the
worlds bishops.
Detailed proposals for this were put forth
in Archbishop Quinns book, which in 2005
appeared in Spanish. Pope Francis read that
work when he was still just a cardinal in
Argentina and, at around that time, he report-
edly expressed his conviction that at least
some of its ideas should be adopted.
The Popes decision to name eight senior
bishops to advise him in the government of
the Universal Church is a sign which points
in that direction. They represent all the
continents. Five of the eight have been or
currently are elected heads of national or
international episcopal conferences; one
headed his international religious order and
once worked in the Roman Curia. Only two
(a German and an Italian) are European. Only
one is currently working at the Vatican, though
technically not part of the Curia.
Pope Francis chose Honduran Cardinal
Oscar Rodrguez Maradiaga SDBto be the
groups coordinator. The charismatic 70-year-
old Archbishop of Tegucigalpa (1993-present)
is considered a church moderate with a for-
midable social justice sense. A former
president of the Episcopal Conference of Latin
America (Celam), he is in his second term as
president of Caritas Internationalis (CI), the
vast and professionally organised network of
the Churchs national and regional charity
agencies. His experience of subsidiary forms
of administration in the CI confederation and
his mastery of six languages strongly recom-
mend him for the coordinating role. He is
one of only three members of the group who
were created cardinals by John Paul II, getting
his red hat in the same 2001 consistory as the
former Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio, now Pope.
Cardinal Francisco Javier Errzuriz
Ossaof Chile is the representative from South
America. Hes another of the Popes 2001 con-
sistory classmates and also a past president
of Celam. The Archbishop Emeritus of
Santiago de Chile (1998-2010) will be 80 in
September. A member of the Schnstatt
Fathers, he was elected in 1974 to the first of
three consecutive terms as the institutes inter-
national superior general. Immediately
afterwards he was appointed archbishop-
secretary at the Congregation for Religious
(1990-96). Two terms as president of Chiles
episcopal conference are also part of his
leadership experience.
Australian Cardinal George Pell, who will
be 72 in June, is the final member of the group
that got their red hats from John Paul II
(2003). Archbishop of Sydney since 2001, he
is arguably the most conservative of the eight
advisers. He has never been elected to any
major leadership position, but he has received
several papal appointments, most notably as
head of the Vox Clara Committee that super-
vised the English translation of the Missal.
Pell is a no-nonsense, straight-talking critic
of the Italian-dominated and inefficient
Roman Curia. He represents Oceania as its
only active cardinal.
Cardinal Sen Patrick OMalley, who
turns 69 in June, brings impressive credentials
to the group as North Americas representa-
tive, especially in dealing with sexual-abuse
crises. After highly praised clean-up and
healing missions as bishop in three smaller
dioceses, he was appointed Archbishop of
Boston in 2003 and was made cardinal three
Cleaning up the Curia
20 April 2013
Capping housing
benefit is treating the
symptom while
blaming the victim
For some in the Tory Party, the year
Margaret Thatcher became Prime
Minister, 1979, was the moment
when the British historical clock was
reset to zero. The Conservative Party
would do better to delve further
back, to the year 1951 for example,
when Harold Macmillan became
Housing Minister with the promise
to build 300,000 houses a year. The
task would make him or break him,
Churchill told him, and make him it
did. It wasnt just that he began to
meet the need for decent housing to
replace that destroyed in the war, or
to get rid of the inner-city slums. The
construction industry received a
boost that lifted the economy out of
the doldrums to the point where
Macmillan, Prime Minister by then,
explained his 1959 election victory by
saying they the people had
never had it so good. It was all sound
Keynesian stuff, and it worked.
Compare that with now. One of
the reasons why the cost of housing
benefit or income support is so high
is because rents are so high and
wages so low. These payments need
to be understood as subsidies to
rapacious landlords and exploitative
employers; tenants and workers are
merely the conduit. Another reason
why the housing benefit bill is too
high, of course, is because scarcity
forces up prices, and there are severe
housing shortages in many parts of
the country. So capping housing
benefit, as the Government has just
begun to do, is treating the symptom,
not the cause, while blaming the
victim. And the price of a house is
way beyond the reach of the average
working couple. Similarly, endless
government talk about making
work pay would be unnecessary if
work really did pay, that is to say, if
wages were significantly higher and
therefore less in need of topping up
by the state.
And there is a Keynesian multiplier
in this as well. Lower-paid people
spend their money in the shops as
soon as they get it; they do not invest
it in Swiss gold watches. Thus shops
prosper, but so do their suppliers and
manufacturers. Macmillan would
have seen the point. The argument
against a living wage is identical to
that against the idea of a minimum
wage in 1997, namely that it would
force up unemployment. It didnt,
providing further evidence that the
logic of market forces doesnt always
work when applied to human beings.
Weve found that paying the living
wage has reduced staff turnover and
absenteeism, while productivity and
professionalism have subsequently
increased, said Guy Stallard, head of
facilities at the accountancy firm
KPMG, one of the Living Wage
campaigns most stalwart supporters.
Proof, if any were needed, that if you
treat people like human beings, they
act like human beings. The campaign,
supported by London Mayor Boris
Johnson and Ed Miliband, was
launched initially by the group
London Citizens, whose ideas are
rooted in Catholic Social Teaching.
So here are two policies going
begging that can be picked up either
by the Coalition Government
or by Labour, which is daily being
assailed for criticising the
Government without offering
alternatives. Neither of these
solutions is entirely consistent with
the free-market ideology that still
governs Treasury thinking, because
neither of them will happen if the
market for housing or jobs is left to
its own devices. They require
Which brings us back to Harold
Macmillan. As Housing Minister he
had to override the market, investing
public money where necessary. He
knew a newly built house is not
money wasted, but money turned
into bricks and mortar with a socially
useful purpose and added long-term
value. They can be rented or sold to
recoup that investment. And with
higher wages, they can be affordable
again. Meanwhile, building them
and fitting them out provides jobs
and lifts the economy. Herein lies the
answer to one of the Governments
greatest imponderables how to
stimulate growth.
This Government or the next
needs to promise, first, a living wage
enforced throughout the public
sector, with a sustained campaign to
raise wages in the private sector.
Hence a Minister of Labour, with a
seat in the Cabinet. Secondly, a
300,000-a-year house-building
target to be delivered by a Minister
of Housing and Local Government
thus responsible also for town
planning and also sitting in the
Cabinet. Then, and only then, can we
start to talk about people who saved
the nation. Saved it from aimless
adherence to blind market forces
that are taking us nowhere. Saved it
from an ever-burgeoning benefits
budget the nation cannot afford. And
saved many people from much misery.
20 April 2013
years later. Although he has never been elected
to major office, his Franciscan simplicity,
knowledge of Latin America and close friend-
ship with Pope Francis and Cardinal
Rodrguez make him a valued adviser.
Cardinal Oswald Gracias, Archbishop of
Bombay since 2006 and the current president
of Indias episcopal conference, is also secretary
general of the larger Federation of Asian
Bishops Conferences. The 68-year-olds train-
ing as a canon lawyer and his experience at
several Vatican-held synods are part of his
skill-set. He was created cardinal in 2007.
The African member of the group,
Cardinal Laurent Monsengwo Pasinya of
Kinshasa (since 1998), served for several years
as parliamentary leader of the former Zaire
during its transition into the Democratic
Republic of Congo. A Rome-trained biblical
scholar, he has been elected president of the
national bishops conference, as well as head
of the large continent-wide symposium of all
of Africas episcopal conferences. In addition,
he once served as co-president of Pax Christi
International. He will be 74 in October; and
was created cardinal in 2010.
Europes principal representative in the
group of advisers is German Cardinal
Reinhard Marx, president of the Commission
of the Episcopates of the European
Community. Conservative doctrinally but a
strong proponent of the Churchs social teach-
ing, he has been Archbishop of Munich since
2009. The youngest member of the Popes
advisers, he turns 60 in September. He was
created cardinal in 2010.
ardinal Giuseppe Bertello, a
career papal diplomat, is the only
member of the group who has not
been a diocesan bishop. After serv-
ing as nuncio in several African countries, the
United Nations in Geneva, Mexico and finally
in Italy, he was named governor of Vatican
City State in 2011. Technically he is not part
of the Roman Curia, but oversees the admin-
istrative and technical services inside the
papal enclave. Ordained priest for the Diocese
of Ivrea, he will be 71 in October, and some
believe he could be the next Vatican Secretary
of State. He was made a cardinal last year.
Pope Francis also selected Italian Bishop
Marcello Semeraro, 65, to be the secretary of
the group. Bishop of Albano (where the Castel
Gandolfo papal summer residence is located)
since 2004, he worked as an assistant to then-
Cardinal Bergoglio at the 2001 Synod.
The Vatican said the eight advisers would
not hold their first joint meeting until next
October. But the Pope is already consulting
with them, probably by telephone and mail,
as well meeting them during their frequent
visits to Rome. No doubt he is also consulting
with several others who are already living in
the Eternal City cardinals such as Walter
Kasper, Cludio Hummes OFM and Joo
Cardinal Brz de Aviz. Certainly, Pope Francis
is not expected to postpone all significant
decisions or appointments until the autumn.
Rather, hes likely to discuss them with his
consultants in Rome and his G8 abroad.
(See The Church in the World, page 24.)
n the evening before his inaugur -
ation last month, Pope Francis
made a telephone call to an old
friend in Buenos Aires.
Hello, its Bergoglio. They trapped me here
in Rome and they wont let me come home,
he told Rabbi Abraham Skorka, whom he has
known for 20 years. It was, said the rabbi, a
characteristic opening from the Pope, whom
he describes as modest and direct, but ready
with a joke.
In fact, thinking back to the early days when
the two men hardly knew each other, it is
another joke that the rabbi most vividly recalls.
They first met in the mid-1990s when mem-
bers of different faiths were invited each year
to the Catholic cathedral in Buenos Aires to
celebrate Argentinian independence. We
began to get to know each other a bit and
then I remember that he made a joke before
the Te Deum when he came to say hello, said
Rabbi Skorka, who is now rector of the Latin
American Rabbinical Seminary in Argentina.
In Buenos Aires, football is important and
everybody follows a club. The Pope supports
San Lorenzo and Rabbi Skorka supports River
Plate, known as Chickens to rivals. Bergoglio
looked at me and said, I think this year were
going to eat chicken soup, Rabbi Skorka
revealed. It was funny and, after that, we
began to get to know each other better.
In the decades since then, the two men have
been instrumental in improving relations
between Catholics and Jews in Argentina,
which has the largest Jewish population in
Latin America. It has been an era in which
conventions have been broken and precedents
set. In 2004 and 2007, for example, Rabbi
Skorka invited Cardinal Bergoglio to attend
the Selichot services before Rosh Hashanah
(penitential prayers for the Jewish New Year).
I asked Bergoglio to give us his message for
Jewish New Year. It was historic because it
was the first time an Archbishop of Buenos
Aires had been to a synagogue to give his
reflections to a Jewish community.
Then, last year, Cardinal Bergoglio awarded
Rabbi Skorka an honorary doctorate from
the Catholic University of Buenos Aires. This
was the first time it had been awarded to a
Jew or a rabbi in the whole of Latin America,
said Skorka. It was Bergoglios move, he pro-
moted it and it was a very strong sign. Another
unusual step was the decision made by
Cardinal Bergoglio that Rabbi Skorka, rather
than a fellow Catholic, should write the pro-
logue to El Jesuita, the book of interviews of
20 April 2013
Catholic Schools
Identity and Mission
Monday 3
Tuesday 4
June 2013
Worth Abbey

What is distinctive about Catholic schools? How have they adapted to the
contemporary educational and political terrain? What is their mission?
Do they have a future?

A conference for Catholic school leaders, governors and policy makers,
jointly organised by Worth School and the Jesuit Institute.

Mr Gino Carminati, Worth School
Professor Gerald Grace KHS, Institute of Education, London
Fr Christopher Jamison OSB, National Office for Vocation
Rev Gordon Parry, Bloxham Project
Fr Adrian Porter SJ, Jesuit Institute

Information at
The Tablet Interview
Jews now have
a good partner
in the Vatican
When he was Archbishop of Buenos Aires, the
future Pope Francis got to know a leading rabbi,
Abraham Skorka. Rabbi Skorka talks to Isabel de
Bertodano about the pairs friendship and the
revolutionary at the helm of the Catholic Church
Bergoglio, published in 2010. I asked him
why he had made this decision and he said
Because that is what came from my heart.
That touched me deeply. It was around this
time that the two men decided to collaborate
on a book, On Heaven and Earth, which is
due to be published by Bloomsbury in the
UK next month. It was just like him to say
that it should be a book of questions that any
man on the street would ask, said Rabbi
Skorka. He believes you can say the most
profound things in a very simple way.
The resulting book is presented as a series
of conversations between Rabbi Skorka and
Cardinal Bergoglio on topics ranging from
clerical celibacy to the Holocaust. Of course
we have a lot in common in our points of
view, said Rabbi Skorka who, at 62, is 14 years
younger than the Pope. But there are also
obviously shades that separate us.
I asked how the new Pope responds to a
debate whether he can be persuaded by what
he hears to change his opinion. Bergoglio is
a person who listens very carefully, said the
rabbi. He analyses everything and is forceful
in a discussion. Essentially, when hes arrived
at a conclusion after meditating deeply, hes
unlikely to change his mind. Among the topics
on which the Pope is absolutely unwavering
is his refusal to tolerate anti-Semitism of any
kind, particularly clerical anti-Semitism. This
is the only kind of thing that makes him really
angry anti-Semitism, any kind of fanaticism.
Have the two ever argued? No, never. Its
a question of respect. Its one thing to disagree
on something in a debate and another to
argue. We try to see where we agree and how
we agree and were clear that there are points
on which we wont coincide on theological
positions, for example. But we have so much
respect for each other and we understand
how to draw near to each other through
Rabbi Skorka happened to be at home when
he saw on the internet the white smoke sig-
nalling the election of a new pope. I turned
on the television, just out of interest, he said.
It was a huge excitement to see him come
out on to that balcony. But, in truth, I can tell
you that it was a double feeling: of happiness,
but also a great pain in my heart that my
friend was gone.
However, in terms of Jewish-Catholic rela-
tions, the outlook could not be brighter. There
is a lot of hope around now, said Rabbi
Skorka. He recognises that much work has
been done already, mentioning the Second
Vatican Council and, in particular, Nostra
Aetate, the Second Vatican Council declaration
proclaimed by Pope Paul VI in 1965, on the
relationship of the Church to other faiths. He
added that John Paul IIs visit to Romes main
synagogue in 1986, and later to Israel, were
important. These were giant steps, he said.
One matter on which light is likely to be
shed during this pontificate, according to
Rabbi Skorka, is the question over how much
action Pope Pius XII took to protect Jews
during the Second World War. Pope Francis
is keen to open documents held in the Vatican
archives to public scrutiny, said the rabbi.
Its a terribly sensitive issue, but he says that
20 April 2013
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I think hes prepared for that. Hes a strong
person spiritually and its the spirit that drives
the body. Rabbi Skorka is confident that the
dialogue will progress with the newly
appointed Archbishop of Buenos Aires, Mario
Poli. Yes, of course I expect the good relations
to continue, after all, Bergoglio appointed
Poli and Im sure he is a good man. But, with
Bergoglio and me, its a story of friendship
rather than dialogue.
As an illustration, the rabbi described his
recordings for a weekly television programme
with Cardinal Bergoglio, broadcast on the
Archbishopric of Buenos Aires channel. The
shows were pre-recorded in a series; they met
about every month.
We would look into each others eyes and
know exactly how to proceed, recalled the
rabbi. We would have a theme and wed reach
an unspoken understanding. This is some-
thing that is only achieved over many years
of friendship.
Although Rabbi Skorka hopes to see the
Pope again at some point, for now he will be
watching events in Rome from afar.
Well wait to see what comes next, what
issues Bergoglio chooses to address, he said.
But what is certain is that the Jews now have
a very good partner in the Vatican.
Isabel de Bertodano is a freelance
journalist and former home news editor of
The Tablet.
it must be investigated thoroughly, he
explained. I have no doubt that he will move
to open the archives. Another controversy
is the Good Friday prayer for the conversion
of Jews to Christianity approved by Pope
Benedict XVI for Mass in the Tridentine Rite.
Rabbi Skorka said he never discussed the
issue with Bergoglio, but added: I know his
great sensitivity to anything which can hurt
or offend.
The rabbi was also reluctant to discuss other
potential changes during a Francis papacy.
We have talked about these things, but they
were private conversations between friends,
he said. I think hes going to change every-
thing that he believes needs to be changed.
He is not a person to take on this role in a
passive way. Hes not a person who stays quiet
when he knows that there is work to be done.
He added that the new Pope has little time
for the more glamorous aspects of the job.
On the Catholic Church, its morals and
ethics, yes, hes traditional, said the rabbi.
On matters of customs, protocol, flamboy-
ance, luxury, as well as in his approach to the
poor, he is a revolutionary.
Rabbi Skorka spoke to the Pope a second
time last month, when his friend rang at the
start of Passover. I said Hey, how are you,
hows it going? and he replied Ive got somuch
work on, the rabbi said. Its a stressful job,
of course, very difficult and he mustnt trip
up because everybody is watching him. But
Iraq 10 years on
20 April 2013
This was no just war
A series of car bombs exploded across Iraq this week as the country prepares for its first elections
since the withdrawal of US troops. Here, in a devastating critique, a former senior diplomat who
supported the decision to go to war against Saddam explains why he was falsely persuaded
hortly after I arrived in Italy as British
ambassador in May 2003, I was
invited to give a talk on foreign affairs
to university students in Bologna.
When I arrived there by train, I was met by
the police, who warned me of a demonstration
at the university. About what? I asked naively.
Your visit, came the reply. It was some three
months after the US/UK-led invasion of Iraq.
Eventually, I gave my talk, despite the rioting
and the tear gas.
At the time, I believed that the war was, on
balance, just, but in the intervening decade,
as more material has emerged, it has become
increasingly clear that it was not only unjust
but also immoral and illegal as well. Some,
but not all, of this material has come to light
in the evidence submitted to the inquiry, led
by Sir John Chilcot, which is seeking to identify
lessons from the conflict.
Chilcot has yet to publish his report. But
we already know enough to conclude that we
went to war on a false prospectus which
deceived erstwhile supporters of the war and
made those of us who were paid to defend
the Governments position complicit in a
wrong. Hundreds of thousands of words have
been written about just war theory from
Augustine and Aquinas through Gentili and
Grotius. Yet there is a wide consensus about
the conditions for a just war, of which, first
and foremost, is just cause.
The prime reason for the Iraq war was said
to be the imminent threat posed by Saddam
Husseins inventory of weapons of mass
destruction (WMD). Most of the evidence
for this came from tainted sources, exiles with
a vested interest in seeing Saddam deposed.
The initial September and subsequent dodgy
dossiers compiled and edited by John
Scarlett, subsequently C of MI6, and issued
by Tony Blairs spin doctor, Alastair Campbell,
to persuade a doubting public of the case for
war drew on these sources.
What emerged was a deeply flawed docu-
ment. Most of its key claims have been
demonstrated as palpably false, particularly
Iraqs possession of WMD and Blairs claim
in the foreword that Saddam had the capacity
to deliver a WMD attack on Britain within
45 minutes. This claim led to the allegation
that Iraq had sought significant quantities
of uranium from Africa, an allegation shown
to have been based on forged documents.
General Michael Laurie, who helped pro-
duce the September dossier, wrote to the
Chilcot inquiry to say that the purpose of the
dossier was precisely to make a case for war,
rather than setting out the available intelli-
gence, and that to make the best out of sparse
and inconclusive intelligence the wording
was developed with care. In June 2011, The
Guardian printed details of a memo from
John Scarlett to Blairs chief foreign policy
adviser, Sir David Manning, that referred to
the benefit of obscuring the fact that in terms
of WMD Iraq is not that exceptional an
unambiguous suggestion that the dossier
should be doctored so as to mislead.
The US administration made it clear from
the start that regime change was its real objec-
tive and that whether the UN inspectors
discovered WMD or not they proposed to act
to remove Saddam, with or without UK sup-
port. The Blair inner Cabinet was aware of
this as early as July 2002, some nine months
before the invasion. The secret memorandum
of a meeting in Downing Street that month
revealed that senior officials were told of a
visit to Washington by Sir Richard Dearlove,
the then head of MI6. Dearlove reported that
there was a perceptible shift in attitude.
Military action was now seen as inevitable.
[President George W.] Bush wanted to
remove Saddam, through military action, jus-
tified by the conjunction of terrorism and
WMD. But the intelligence and facts were
being fixed around the policy[my emphasis].
The National Security Council had no patience
with the UN route.
The then Attorney General, Lord Goldsmith,
expressed his misgivings: The desire for
regime change was not a legal base for military
action. There were three possible legal bases:
self-defence, humanitarian intervention, or
UNSC [United Nations Security Council]
authorisation. The first and second could not
be the base in this case. Relying on UNSCR
[United Nations Security Council Resolution]
1205 of three years ago would be difficult.
On Bushs hopes to justify the attack, not
only was the claim of WMD found to be false
but the alleged link between Saddam and al-
Qaeda and other international terrorists was
proved by the US own 9/11 Commission
Report to be bogus. So another criterion of
just war, right intention, where force may be
used only in a truly just cause, was violated.
One more condition of just war, last resort,
went by the board. When the UN weapons
inspectors who had found no evidence of a
WMD programme said that they needed more
time, this was rejected by the Bush adminis-
tration. Washington had assembled a
substantial military force in the Persian Gulf:
they could not keep the soldiers hanging
around in the extreme heat while the inspec-
tors completed their work.
Most of the international community, how-
ever, declined to support a new UN Security
Council Resolution authorising the use of
force. To the fury of the US and UK
Governments, the French proved particularly
obdurate (remember them being dubbed
cheese-eating surrender monkeys on Capitol
Hill). So without a current UN resolution,
the two Governments fell back on dubious
argument, justifying their use of force by
referring to historical UN resolutions.
The British Governments international
lawyers at the Foreign Office strongly dis-
agreed and made clear their view that to
proceed without a fresh UN resolution would
render military action illegal. The senior legal
adviser, Michael Wood, made this clear at
Chilcot. His senior deputy, Elizabeth
Wilmshurst, had been outraged when her
views were ignored, and resigned. Indeed,
one of the most shocking aspects of the whole
saga is the way that Lord Goldsmith a com-
mercial lawyer, who had originally accepted
the advice on illegality not only changed his
view after a visit to Washington but also con-
cealed the Foreign Offices lawyers advice
from the Cabinet.
Anyone having trouble
after a major loss can
be deemed mad and
can be treated
We live in a culture so terrified of
death that it seems to be in a state of
acute denial. It crops up everywhere,
even in the implication that if you
eat all the right things, or more
commonly dont eat any of the
wrong things, you could live forever
so if you freely put cream on your
strawberries (or whatever) it is all
your own fault if you die. I am
increasingly coming to believe that
people are frightened of silence and
solitude because it puts them in
mind of death.
And now, in a move that seems to
me deeply scary, that fear and denial
of the reality and devastation of
death is driving so-called experts
(possibly unconsciously) towards
defining grief as a mental illness and
offering to treat it. Next month the
American Psychiatric Association
will publish the fifth edition of the
Diagnostic and Statistical Manual
of Mental Disorders (DSM-5). For
those not acquainted with this tome,
it is important to know that it has
global reach; it offers diagnostic
criteria for all known mental illness
(and some pretty dubious ones too
as of next month, severe
pre-menstrual tension will be
classified as a mental illness) and
treatment guides.
DSM-4 (the present edition)
excluded a quick diagnosis of a
major depressive episode in the
presence of bereavement. DSM-5 is
withdrawing that exclusion. From
13 May, anyone who is having
trouble managing their sadness
within months, even weeks, of a
major loss can be deemed mad and
should be treated not with love
and attention and tenderness, but
with serotonin uplift inhibitors.
It is not difficult to see in whose
interests this is. Since most adults
will experience at least one incident
of major bereavement in their lives
sometimes shockingly sudden and
violent like Boston last Sunday;
sometimes public and contentious
like the Thatchers and more than
half of them experience depression-
like symptoms of unhappiness at
some point in the first year, there are
to be cynical an enormous
number of drugs to be sold here.
There will also be something that
hard-pressed doctors can do: they
can write a prescription and feel
they have addressed the patients
problem. And it lets all of us off the
hook. It is so hard and painful to
stay with the grief of another, never
mind ones own. It brings our own
death and loss too close, it absorbs
energy and demands sensitivity and
self-control, it is tiring and oddly
embarrassing. It is scary. Now we
can just tell them to buck up and
get down to the doctors surgery
phew, what a relief.
And since, as a society, we
stigmatise those with mental
illnesses, we will be justified in
turning our backs on those who
insist by their grief that there is
something to be sad about that at
both a personal and social level we
are diminished by death.
This issue ought to be a special
concern for Christians. This is
partly because our founder
members and most of the major
mystics ever since would be slapped
with a psychosis diagnosis today,
given they claim to hear the voice of
God. So in self-protection if nothing
else we need to challenge psychiatric
dominance whenever possible. But
even more because we are in some
ways culturally responsible for this
sorry development, through
preaching too often a pie-in-the-sky
trivialisation of death. We should
know better.
If death is not a dark and horrible
thing, then why does the right to
life matter? If death is a minor
episode, a bit like a bad cold, through
which we can pass smoothly enough
if we keep warm and drink lots of
fluids, then what is so generous and
loving and beautiful about a God
who is willing to go there? If death
is just something you should shrug
off and if you cant you are sick, then
what is so exciting about the
In Johns gospel we see something
different. Jesus, at the risk of his life,
comes back across the River Jordan
to comfort Martha and Mary
because their brother has died. In
what cannot be more than an hour
he declares resoundingly that I am
the Resurrection and the life;
whoever believes in me shall never
die and then he goes directly to
Lazarus grave and weeps. He weeps
because his friend is dead. Because
death is the last enemy. Because he
is very sad.
I do not believe that offering him
Prozac is called for.
(More information and a petition
about DSM-5 and its deficiencies
can be found at
20 April 2013
Another person who had the benefit of a
Damascene conversion was Tony Blair.
Although he had been told, according to
recently released documents, that Iraq pos-
sessed a relatively trivial amount of WMD
and that Libya posed by far a greater threat,
he returned from a crucial stay with Bush at
his Texas ranch in April 2002, nearly a year
before the war, convinced, cajoled or flattered
into believing in regime change in Iraq.
Lastly, in terms of the bases of a just war,
comes proportionality. The anticipated
benefits of waging a war must be proportion-
ate to its expected evils or harms. Tony Blair
is frequently quoted as saying that even
without the discovery of WMD he believes
the world is a better place without Saddam.
Of course, without dictators and tyrants, the
world is a better place. But at what cost? Well
over 100,000 Iraqis, mainly civilians, died in
the Iraq war and continue to die at the hands
of largely Sunni insurgents, displaced as the
governing power in the land. How many of
those and their families would think it was
worth it? Coalition forces losses amounted
to some 4,800. The disproportionate loss of
life alone for a dubious and discredited cause
makes the war immoral.
s Iraqis prepare to go to the polls
in the first elections since the
departure of US combat forces
the prospects for a stable and pros-
perous post-war Iraq do not look encouraging.
Violence has already led to the postponement
of elections in two largely Sunni provinces
following protests against the Shiite domin -
ated Government. Only three weeks ago,
more than 20 people were killed by a suicide
bomber at a largely Sunni political rally. Most
analysts believe it to be the work of al-Qaeda
in Mesopotamia, which is keen to disrupt the
elections and prepared to attack not just the
Shiite but also Sunni parties cooperating with
the Government.
Only two bodies can claim satisfaction from
the mess left behind by the US/UK invasion:
Iran, which now sees a Shiite dominated, pro-
Iranian government in power, and the Kurds,
who have largely got what they wanted in
terms of autonomy. Otherwise, the invasion
has left a legacy of sectarian division. The
invaders missed an opportunity to support
the secular parties, which might have been
better placed to bridge the gulf between Sunni
and Shiite and which could have stemmed
the setback to womens rights that has followed
the Shiite takeover.
Should the West stand idly by? Given our
track record, including the egregious example
of human-rights abuses at Abu Ghraib prison
and elsewhere, it is impossible to imagine
that we would be welcome. The prize that
Bush and Blair sought was achieved in the
shape of the overthrow of Saddams regime.
But at the cost of a cataclysm. Once more
unto the breach? I think not.
Sir Ivor Roberts is a former British
ambassador to Yugoslavia, Ireland and Italy.
He is currently President of Trinity College,
Ties that bind and divide
Despite the Churchs strong condemnation of same-sex marriage, a YouGov survey
commissioned for this weeks debate on the issue finds that it splits British Catholics down
the middle between a desire for equality and abiding belief in difference
Overall, the YouGov survey con-
cludes that 44 per cent of
Catholics say same-sex couples
should be allowed to get married,
and 41 per cent say they should
not, writes Linda Woodhead.
The remaining 15 per cent dont know.
When asked the related question about
whether same-sex marriage is right or wrong,
the proportions reverse: 44 per cent say it is
wrong and 36 per cent that it is right. A larger
20 per cent dont know. In other words, a
minority of Catholics who, despite their per-
sonal belief that same-sex marriage is wrong,
think it should be allowed. One of the Catholic
contributors to our debate, Lord Deben (John
Gummer), holds this opinion. He argues that
the Churches should not attempt to impose
their stricter Christian understanding of mar-
riage upon state marriage.
How do Catholics compare with others?
When it comes to allowing same-sex marriage,
Catholics are identical to Anglicans, more per-
missive than Methodists, Baptists and
Muslims, and more restrictive than Jews,
Hindus and those of no religion. Overall,
our survey finds that 52 per cent of the
population are in favour and 34 per cent
against so Catholics are a little less permissive
than the general public.
Among Catholics, who is most opposed to
allowing same-sex marriage? The factors that
count most are: (1) age young people are
three times more likely to be in favour than
those aged 60-plus; (2) believing that there is
definitely a God; (3) gender 40 per cent of
men are against same-sex marriage, compared
with 27 per cent of women; (4) taking most
authority from God or other religious sources.
In other words, older men who are most certain
there is a God, and who regard God, religious
teachings, leaders and Scriptures as most
authoritative, are the strongest opponents of
the proposal to allow same-sex marriage.
The most common reason given by those
who say same-sex marriage is right is that
people should be treated equally whatever
their sexual orientation (77 per cent). The
most common reason given by those who say
same-sex marriage is wrong is that marriage
should be between a man and a woman (79
per cent). This is a debate which pivots around
the question of whether men and women are
basically equal and similar, or abidingly
Linda Woodhead is professor of the
sociology of religion at Lancaster University.
She organises the Westminster Faith
Debates with the Rt Hon. Charles Clarke;
the debates are funded by Lancaster
University, the Arts and Humanities Research
Council and the Economic and Social
ResearchCouncil. Videos and podcasts
can be viewed at
Westminster Faith Debates
20 April 2013
The Government
believes that
extending marriage
to same-sex couples
will ensure the
ancient institution
is relevant for our century, writes
Steve Chalke.
But Im worried that the noise of
the arguments around gay
marriage is clouding the real
question for the Church: the
nature of inclusion. I am convinced
that it is only as the Christian
community grapples with this that
we will fnd wise answers, not only
regarding gay marriage, but also
to related questions around the
Churchs wider attitude to gay
One tragic result of the Churchs
historical rejection of faithful gay
relationships is our failure to
provide homosexual people with
any model of how to cope with
their sexuality, except for those
who have the gift of, or capacity
for, celibacy. In this way we have
left countless people vulnerable
and isolated. Promiscuity is always
damaging and dehumanising.
Casual and self-centred
expressions of sexuality
homosexual or heterosexual
never refect Gods faithfulness,
grace and self-giving love. Only
stable relationships can ofer the
security in which well-being and
love can thrive. When we refuse to
make room for gay people to live
in loving, permanent relationships,
we consign them to lives of
loneliness and fear. Shouldnt the
Church consider nurturing positive
models for consensual and
monogamous homosexual
I have formed my view not out
of any disregard for the Bibles
authority, but, through prayerful
refection, seeking to take it
seriously. Minority interpretations
of Scripture often struggle for
decades before becoming
accepted. Take the example of
slavery. William Wilberforce and
friends were condemned by the
Church as they fought for
abolition. On the basis of a
straightforward biblical exegesis
of the Bibles text, their critics were
right. However, Wilberforce and his
friends reached their conclusions
by building their stance around
the deeper resonance of Scripture,
the compass for which is Jesus,
who was radically inclusive of
social outcasts of his day,
challenging perceived orthodoxy.
Wilberforce recognised that it was
thoughtful conformity to Christ
not unthinking conformity to either
culture or textual prohibitions
that should be the Churchs
unchanging reference point.
Shouldnt we take the same
principle that we now readily apply
to slavery, and numerous other
issues, and apply it to our
understanding of faithful
homosexual relationships?
Numerous studies show that
suicide rates among gay people,
especially young people, are
comparatively high. Church
leaders sometimes use this data to
argue that homosexuality is
unhealthy when, tragically, its
anti-gay stigma, propped up by
church attitudes, that all too often
drives these statistics. When we
push homosexual people outside
our communities and Churches;
when we blame them for what
they are; when we deny them our
blessing on their commitment to
lifelong, faithful relationships, we
make them doubt whether they
are children of God, made in his
Rather than continue to
condemn and exclude, can we
dare to create an environment for
homosexual people where issues
of self-esteem and well-being can
be talked about; where the virtues
of loyalty, respect, interdependence
and faithfulness can be nurtured;
and where exclusive, permanent
same-sex relationships can be
Over the coming months, the
often heated debate around gay
marriage will continue. I am
committed to trying to understand
the intricacies of the arguments on
both sides. But whichever side of
the debate we fnd ourselves on,
my hope is that the Church will
face what I think is the central
issue what does real, Christ-like
inclusion of the gay community
look like?
Steve Chalke is a Baptist minister
and founder of the Oasis global
family of charities. An article
which deals more fully with the
exegesis of the relevant biblical
texts, together with a 15-minute
video, is available at
Shouldnt the Church consider nurturing positive models for
consensual and monogamous homosexual relationships?
20 April 2013
During the course of the recent
government attempt to legalise
gay marriage, it has emerged that
this proposal is impossible, writes
John Milbank. It would be
intolerable to defne gay marriage
as an equivalent to consummation, or to allow
adulteryas grounds for gay divorce.
Thus despite the squeamishness of
discussions of homosexuality, which steer away
from its physical aspects, the legislators have
been forced tacitly to admit both the diferent
nature of gay sexuality and the diferent nature
of gay relationships. But this admission wrecks
both the assumption behind the legislation and
the coherence of what the legislation proposes
to enact. The assumption behind the legislation
is that fairnessmust involve the application of
universal rights to each individual in the same
way. But the admission reveals that in the
current instance such application would be
unfair, inappropriate and unrealistic.
The coherence of the legislation depends on
making a clear distinction between civil union,
which is already allowed for both straight and
gay people, and marriage. Yet if the binding and
unloosing of gay and straight marriage are
stipulated in diferent ways, then in efect such a
distinction has been reinstated. The suspicion
arises that the proposed bill desires only an
empty change in nomenclature and this is borne
out by the fact that the intended circumscription
of gay marriage is so diluted as to render it
indistinguishable from gay civil partnership.
But why then should Christians worry, if this is
all merely a matter of words? Perhaps, in order to
safeguard the Churches from pressures to
conform to the norm, we should now welcome a
withdrawal from the Churches of their rights as a
civil-marriage broker. This would leave the
Churches free to claim that only natural and
sacramental marriage is genuinely marriage,
while state marriage is mere civil union. They
could trump secularisation by declaring that the
era of merely civil marriage had been a failed
experiment. This may, indeed, be the direction
that the Churches now need to take. However,
the graver fear is that secular thought will not so
readily let go of the demand for absolutely equal
rights based on identical defnitions.
In that case we face a more drastic prospect.
Not only would marriage have been redefned
so as to include gay marriage, it would inevitably
be redefned even for heterosexual people in
homosexual terms. Thus consummation and
adultery would cease to be seen as of any
relevance to the binding and unloosing of straight
unions. Many might welcome this as a further
removal of state intrusion into our private lives.
But that would be to fail to consider all the
implications. In the frst place, it would end
public recognition of the importance of
marriage as a union of sexual diference. Yet the
joining and harmonising of the asymmetrical
perspectives of the two sexes is crucial to kinship
relations over time and to social peace. Where
the reality of sexual diference is denied, it gets
reinvented in perverse ways as the over-
sexualisationof women and the confnement of
men to a marginalised machismo.
In the second place, it would end the public
legal recognition of a social reality defned in
terms of the natural link between sex and
procreation. In consequence, the natural children
of heterosexual couples would then legally be
their children only if the state decided that they
might be legally adoptedby them.
And this reveals what is really at issue. There
was no widespread demand for gay marriagein
Europe and it has nothing to do with gays or
their rights. Instead, it is a crucial move in the
state and economys drive to assume direct
control over the reproduction of the population.
We are not talkingabout natural justice, but
about the desire of biopolitical tyranny to
destroy marriage and the family as the most
basic and crucial mediating social institution.
John Milbank is professor of religion,
politics and ethics at Nottingham University.
CROSSWORD No. 356: Alanus
Please send your
answers to:
20 April,
The Tablet,
1 King Street Cloisters,
Clifton Walk, London
W6 0GY.
Please include your
full name, telephone
number and email
address, and a
mailing address. A
copy of the hardback
Oxford Dictionary and
Thesaurus (second edition, RRP 30) will go to the sender of the
first correct entry drawn at random on Friday 3 May. The answers
to this weeks crossword and the winners name will appear in
the 11 May issue.
7 Changed robe working as Shakespearean king (6)
8 End letters after most of the county provides popular red
wine (6)
10 Reset rite set for end of the Iron Curtain (7)
11 Soft redistribution of alms as in example of The Lord is My
Shepherd (5)
12 & 19 Down: Fate of dashed hopes and conclave ballot
papers! (2,2,5)
13 Foreigner in hospital I encounter (5)
17 Made choice for Black Friar along with Edward (5)
18 Nature of awakening that is shocking (4)
22 Atoms arranged around castles (5)
23 Old piano with correct moral standing? (7)
24 Victory in the ring upsets lady composer (6)
25 Type of soup mostly for fast time (6)
1 First name of one who upset soup tin and washed his hands (7)
2 Twice Im involved in new deals for clergy seating in the
sanctuary (7)
3 See 4 Down
4 & 3 Down: Part of cathedral dealing with book sections? (7,5)
5 Daughter-in-law of Naomi in love with harp variation (5)
6 End letters and hear why I bring forth unleavened bread (5)
9 Prince of demons for whom bubble bursts with end of
American letters (9)
14 Poe linked creatively with last recipient of tongue of fire (7)
15 Glue (with VAT) in a novel way reveals original Bible
translation (7)
16 Luke, e.g., was a man with a corrected presentation of a false
statement (7)
19 See 12 Across
20 Office at cricket headquarters we hear (5)
21 Attempted to be judged (5)
Solution to the 30 March crossword No. 353
Across: 7 Mayne; 8 Neology; 10 Triduum; 11 Zenas; 12 Palestrina;
16 Provincial; 20 Caeli; 21 Allegri; 23 Sistine; 24 Adela.
Down: 1 Amity; 2 Cyril; 3 Jehu; 4 Anomie; 5 Mozzetta; 6 Council;
9 Yes-man; 13 Ab Initio; 14 Spices; 15 Not Easy; 17 Chapel; 18 Agley;
19 Aidan; 22 Leah.
Winner: Dr Jean van Altena, of Osmotherley, Northallerton.
Solution to the 30 March sudoku puzzle
7 6
The joining and harmonising
of the asymmetrical
perspectives of the two sexes
is crucial to kinship relations
over time and to social peace
and to appreciate more fully our own bap-
The anointing of the Spirit proclaimed
Christ as prophet, priest and king. Christ
assumed our humanity and shared his
ministry with us so, when we consider the
risen Christ through the lens of this prayer
and the experience of our own baptism, we
understand our life in Christ as a divine-
human exchange. We are bonded with the
divine through the Incarnation, and in
response to the gift to God of our humanity
we receive new life in return, strength to live
in a new way, support from others and a new
identity. Jesus is the one anointed by the
Spirit Christos in Greek.
The odour of a Christian is their character
as members of Christ, prophet, priest and
king and is proper to all the baptised; they
should have a smell, an odour, a perfume
that gives them away. The baptised exercise
their share in the one priesthood of Christ by
their full, conscious and active participation
in the liturgy and by giving themselves with
Christ to God and neighbour. They exercise
their prophetic office when
Christians act with courage to
bring about Gods kingdom of
justice, love and peace. They
exercise their royal office in
humble service, as the shepherd
who lays down his life for the
sheep. The sacrifices we offer
include our prayers and apos-
tolic works, our married and
family lives, our daily work,
mental and physical recreation,
and even lifes troubles if they
are patiently borne (Lumen
Gentium32-34). All these pro-
vide the odour of the Christian
as we live and work with others.
The earliest church buildings in Rome
were named basilicas, and would have
several distinct areas: the entrance porch or
narthex, the baptistry, the main hall and the
dais for the altar. The baptistry is the place
of becoming Christian, where the elect are
washed and anointed becoming the priestly,
prophetic and royal people of God. They are
illuminated and come to see themselves in a
new light. The altar is where the baptised
come to be fed and are renewed in their bap-
tismal character.
mother lovingly remembers the
smell of her baby and the scent
of all she uses to wash the baby, to
oil and powder her. The child is
dependent on her mother and bonds with
her and slowly learns that mother will return
if she has to leave her. The infant learns that,
though still dependent in many ways, she is
a separate person yet, she will have man-
nerisms and ways of behaving she learned
from family, and will continue to follow their
Mother Church, like any mother, lovingly
remembers the smell of her new offspring
too. The Church washes her children and
anoints them with the oil of chrism. She
dresses the child in a new garment and feeds
the child day by day and week by week. They
will develop a resemblance to other Christians,
with traditions and stories inherited from
the church family and with ways of behaving
they learn from the Christian family.
Many who were at the Easter Vigil this
year saw candidates baptised and anointed.
After baptism, infants and young children
are anointed with chrism at
the font; older children and
adults are anointed with
chrism in confirmation. The
oil of chrism is perfumed and,
like the ordained, they will be
recognised as Christians by
their scent, their taste, their
behaviour. This chrism oil is
consecrated by the bishop in
Holy Week, together with the
oil of catechumens and oil of
the sick, and it is distributed
to the parishes to be used in
the infant baptism, in confir-
mation and in ordination.
After an infant is baptised,
he or she is anointed with a prayer that con-
cludes: Almighty God, the Father of our
Lord Jesus Christ himself anoints you with
the oil of salvation in Christ Jesus our Lord
that you may remain members of Christ
priest, prophet and king unto eternal life.
We hear about these three ministries in the
Second Vatican Council Dogmatic Constitution
Lumen Gentium 31 and the 1988 apostolic
exhortation Christifideles Laici 14; they are a
part of the Churchs doctrine and help us
reflect upon the rites celebrated at the font
Church of the senses
When Pope Francis blessed the oils used in baptism, confirmation, ordination and the anointing
of the sick on Maundy Thursday, he asked priests to be shepherds with the smell of sheep.
The rich symbolism of anointing deserves better understanding
There are two strategies for enhancing the
ritual visibility of the holy oils: architecturally
and ritually. In considering the architecture
of the church building, a parish could first
decide, instead of keeping them hidden away
in the sacristy, as happens so often, to keep
these precious oils in a prominent and secure
place near the font. In some parishes I have
visited, such as Troy, Kansas, and Potters
Bar (Westminster), the oils are reserved in a
secure cabinet near the font at the entrance
of the church. The cabinet can be locked,
and yet be illuminated and visible to those
who enter the church building.
A parish may mark a place on the floor of
the church near the font with a six-petalled
symbol, reminding worshippers of the Chi-
Rho, where parents will stand to hold their
newly baptised infants as they are anointed.
A parish may mark a circle on the floor of the
church under the dome to show worshippers
that this is the spot (between Heaven and
earth) where they receive the Sacraments of
Confirmation and Holy Communion.
In considering the ritual of church cele-
brations, the diocesan bishop could ensure
that sufficient balsam-perfume is added to
the chrism at the consecration of the oils
and the priest can be generous in the pouring
and smearing of the oil of chrism so that
parents will continue to smell the newly
baptised for several days after the baptism.
This anointing of infants after baptism does
not refer primarily to our resurrection after
natural death, but to the character of all the
baptised who have arisen from the waters of
baptism to a new identity in Christ.
The implication is that when we emerge
from the baptismal font and are anointed, we
already share in our future glory with Christ
as sharers in his prophetic, priestly and royal
nature and that we are already becoming
what will be fully revealed in us. We are ready
to appear in public and betray ourselves as
Christians in the way we live as Jesus, prophets,
priests and in royal service of all people.
James Leachman is a Benedictine
monk-priest of Ealing Abbey in London.
He writes on and teaches liturgy in Rome
and London. With Daniel McCarthy, he
edited a book, Transitions in the Easter Vigil:
becoming Christians, which will be
published later this year.
Give a secure, illuminated
and prominent place of
honour in the Church to the
three oils consecrated by the
Mark a place of honour on
the floor near the font where
the newly baptised infants
will be anointed
Betray yourself as a Christian
in the way you live as Jesus,
prophets, priests and in royal
service of all people
20 April 2013
12 Tablet 20 Apr 13 PP_P27 parish practice 17/04/2013 12:15 Page 14
Heavenly Father led her
THE ANGLICAN funeral of Lady Thatcher
at St Pauls Cathedral this week was a
reminder of how far the Methodist schoolgirl
had moved theologically over the years.
Growing up in Grantham, Lincolnshire,
Margaret Hilda Roberts had an austere
childhood, much of it centred on the Methodist
chapel, which gave her a lifelong love of
hymns, particularly those of Charles Wesley.
Later at Oxford University, she joined the
Wesleyan Chapel and would sometimes
preach in the chapels of surrounding towns,
where she honed her oratorical skills.
One of the greatest religious influences on
her in later years, when she had become
accustomed to attending Anglican services,
particularly when she stayed at Chequers,
was her private parliamentary secretary, the
late Michael Alison, an Evangelical Anglican.
In his later post, as Second Church
Commissioner, he is said to have persuaded
Mrs Thatcher to put the Evangelical George
Carey forward as the next Archbishop of
According to Alisons son, the Catholic
theologian James Alison, in later years his
father would visit the former Prime Minister
to read psalms to her. Quite what Lady
Thatcher made of Alison Jnrs conversion is
not known.
But she did recall that she and her sister
used to envy the Catholic girls of Grantham
in their First Communion dresses. According
to Eliza Filby, author of the forthcoming
God and Mrs Thatcher, a chapelgoer warned
the young Margaret that a ribboned dress
was the first step to Rome, while her father
condemned her own marriage service, with
Lead Us, Heavenly Father, Lead Us, as
halfway to Rome.
Worthwhile goals
DURING HIS short time in office, Pope
Francis has already begun accumulating
sporting memorabilia.
This week the Spanish Prime Minister,
Mariano Rajoy, gave him a shirt signed by
the star players of Spains national football
team. Francis has also been given a shirt
signed by the Argentinian team he supports,
San Lorenzo, the local club of the neigh-
bourhood of Almagro in Buenos Aires where
he was born.
San Lorenzo owes its origins to the Church,
in particular to one Fr Lorenzo Massa, the
parish priest who in the 1900s allowed the
first organised kick-about in the neighbour-
hood to take place in the backyard of his
church. It was his way of keeping youths out
of trouble after a boy was run over by a tram
during a street football match between rival
In his book on Spanish football, La Roja,
Jimmy Burns notes that during its tour of
Spain, San Lorenzos style of playing, with
short, elaborate passing, left a big impression
at a time when a more direct style was
favoured there.
Burns also points out that Pope Francis
has an invitation from the president of
Barcelona FC, Sandro Rosell, to visit the
Nou Camp, the clubs home ground. An invi-
tation to Spain has also been extended to
Francis by Rajoy, a supporter of Barcelonas
arch-rivals Real Madrid. It will be a tough
choice to decide which stadium to visit.
(See Isabel de Bertodano, page 6.)
Back into the lions den
IN NOVEMBER 2009, Catholic speakers
were roundly beaten in a debate about
whether the Church is a force for good in the
The late polemicist Christopher Hitchens
and the writer and boulevardier Stephen Fry
won convincingly against Ann Widdecombe,
the Catholic former MP, and then Archbishop
(now Cardinal) John Onaiyekan of Abuja,
Now Intelligence Squared, the organiser
of that debate, has set up what could be seen
as round two. Next Wednesday a debate
entitled The Catholic Church is beyond
redemption: Pope Francis cannot save it is
due to take place at Sadlers Wells Theatre,
central London.
Colm OGorman, a survivor of clerical
sexual abuse and the executive director of
Amnesty International Ireland, along with
Ronan McCrea, a barrister and human-
rights expert, will speak in favour of the
Speaking against the motion is Peter
Stanford, the Catholic journalist and columnist
for The Tablet. However, organisers have yet
to announce a second speaker to argue
against the motion. A spokeswoman for
Intelligence Squared said one would be con-
firmed soon.
King of the hill
THE PONTIFICALNorth American College
(NAC), the Roman residence for seminarians
from the United States, will soon be the
undisputed King of the Janiculum Hill. At a
ceremony a week ago on Friday that was led
by Archbishop John Myers of Newark, New
Jersey, president of the NAC board of directors,
the college broke ground on a US$7 million
(4,554,000) project to add a 10-storey tower
to its compound on the hill that overlooks
the Vatican. Mr and Mrs James Mulva of
Oklahoma (he recently retired as chief executive
of ConocoPhillips, one of the worlds largest
oil refiners) have funded the building project.
It will provide administrative offices, hi-tech
classrooms and practice chapels. The Mulvas
also gave an additional US$1.5m (976,000)
to pay for technology updates and other
necessary improvements on the existing six-
storey complex, built in 1953. The expansion
and touch-up were needed to accommodate
the more than 250 seminarians who now live
at the NAC. When the college was originally
founded in 1859, they lived in a smaller
seventeenth-century building near the
Gregorian University, which is now a residence
for American student-priests. It is much
smaller and quainter than the imposing traver-
tine citadel on the Janiculum. As an old NAC
saying goes, Its not home, but its much!
Hospice heroine
AS BRITAINS leading lay Catholic, Miles,
Seventeenth Duke of Norfolk, was active in
church affairs and a trenchant critic of the
Churchs teaching on birth control. His
widow, Anne, who died last week, preferred
to work quietly behind the scenes,
championing the cause of the hospice
In 1984 she founded a charity, Help the
Hospices, after visiting St Josephs Hospice
in Hackney, north-east London, then
struggling financially. According to the former
Home Secretary Lord (Michael) Howard,
the national charitys chairman, she lost her
heart to hospice care after that first visit.
Anne steered our ambitious goal to trans-
form the way people affected by terminal
illness are cared for and her vision will
remain the cornerstone of everything we do
at Help the Hospices, he said.
An accomplished artist, the duchess painted
snow scenes for the charitys Christmas cards,
such as the Changing of the Guard in London
and even a playful journey of the Magi with
a recalcitrant camel.
She married Miles Fitzalan-Howard, then
a career army officer, at the Brompton Oratory
in 1949 when she was 22 and he was 34.
The duchess died on 8 April at her home
in Oxfordshire surrounded by her family.
Her husband died in 2002.
20 April 2013
13 Tablet 20 Apr 13 Notebook _P28 notebook 17/04/2013 16:00 Page 14
20 April 2013
No consent to gay marriage
You reported (The Church in the World, 13
April) on the lecture Cardinal Schnborn gave
at the National Gallery in London on 8 April,
claiming in your headline that Schnborn
leads rethink on same-sex civil unions. To call
Cardinal Schnborn a leading rethinker is
highly flattering but in this case a gross mis-
interpretation. The cardinal does not lead,
neither intends to do so in the future, any
rethink on this matter. He stands clearly by
the Churchs consistent and unwavering
teaching on homosexuality and has repeated
this on many an occasion. The words used by
the cardinal in the lecture were in the defence
of marriage.
What the cardinal did recount during his
lecture on Christianity: Alien Presence or
Foundation of the West? is what he tells
Austrian schoolchildren when they ask him
why the Church opposes gay marriage. His
answer is always that marriage is by defini-
tion and exclusively the union between one
man and one woman that is open to life.
So gay marriage is a contradiction in itself
and in consequence the Church cannot
oppose what does not exist, no matter what
is being claimed or legislated upon to the con-
trary. To make this very clear, the cardinal said
in a side note to this statement that, as the
state may choose to respect certain choices
made by its citizens, it may as a consequence
legislate upon them, but it must never equate
marriage with non-marriage. This cannot be
seen as an endorsement of same-sex civil
unions, neither in a legal sense, nor in a moral
And it is true that the cardinal sees the need
to give thought to the question of pastoral care
for people living in irregular situations to
truly apply, not to rethink, what the Church
has to say about a life in Christ.
Michael Prller
Spokesman of the Archdiocese of Vienna
(See News from Britain and Ireland,
page 30.)
Margaret Thatchers legacy
Be fair! Your leader (Lessons in conviction
politics, 13 April) speaks of Big Bang
deregulation with horrendous consequences
for the national economy two decades later.
During that time, a Labour Government was
in power for 13 years and went to sleep on the
job. There were lots of opportunities to
tighten regulation, as there were to build more
council houses. Big Bang, properly regulated,
would have been of great and lasting benefit
to this country.
Brian Toomey
Taunton, Somerset
In many ways Lady Thatchers Methodist faith
was the basis of everything she did. Methodism
and highly profitable companies in the ITV
network, in effect putting thousands of skilled
people on to the street, and neutering pub-
lic service broadcasting. This was part of her
attack on alternative power bases.
Bernard Cartwright
Stourbridge, West Midlands
For men only?
I do not wish to take issue with my brother,
Dom Paul Gunter, but according to News from
Britain and Ireland (13 April) he is quoted as
saying that parish priests should not wash the
feet of women on Maundy Thursday because
it is intrinsically attached to the office of the
Does this ruling now mean that I cannot
give the Eucharist to women on Maundy
Thursday or, for that matter, on any day?
The Eucharist is intrinsically attached to the
priesthood. Admittedly, Scripture does not
record that Jesus actually shared his Last
Supper with women even though one has
to ask who had cooked and prepared the fam-
ily meal of the Passover. Therefore, just as we
are told that women did not have their feet
washed by Jesus, they could not have received
the Eucharist from Jesus. A sacrament
reserved for men as is the sacramental of the
washing of feet?
(Fr) Gordon Beattie OSB
Parbold, Lancashire
Would Fr Paul now like to urge the Bishops
Conference of England and Wales to direct that
women should leave Mass immediately after
the Gospel on Maundy Thursday and not come
back? Either this or omit the words of Jesus
from Johns gospel of the day, Unless I wash
you, you have no share with me (John 13:8).
(Dr) Anne Inman
St Marys University College, Twickenham
A review of the history of the mandatum at
the Maundy Thursday Mass shows that over
time the focus of the practice has changed.
Until the fifteenth century the focus was on
service and humility, and the celebrant usu-
ally washed the feet of 12 poor men (and
sometimes gave them alms as well). The rubric
of the 1474 Missal was the first to specify that
it should be a wholly clerical affair, and hence
presumably the inference grew that the new
focus was on the priesthood of the Apostles.
(See P.J. Goddard, Festa Paschalia[2011], for
a very detailed history of the rite.)
It seems that Pope Francis would like the
focus to be shifted back to the original idea
of service, so the inclusion of women among
the twelve seems logical. Taboos which for-
bade women to enter the sanctuary (except
to clean it) were abandoned many years ago,
so they should take their place as members
deliberately shuns the pomp and ritual of
organised religion, emphasising the value of
personal communion with God. She didnt con-
form; she was a dissenter with the lonely zeal
of the outsider. She was, in effect, the most
un-conservative of Conservatives.
Ralph Rolls
London SW20
With regard to Archbishop Runcies descrip-
tion of Mrs Thatchers ethics as Hebrew
(Clifford Longley, 13 April), they were only half-
Hebrew. She was correct, in Jewish eyes, to
see helping people to be self-supporting as the
finest kind of charity, but wrong in failing to
see helping those who cannot support them-
selves as equally essential.
Margaret Shenfield Lesser
Bowdon, Altrincham, Cheshire
Margaret Thatcher was indeed a carnivore as
Peter Hennessy suggested (Exit the tigress,
13 April). When I worked for ITV, I covered
the miners strike and saw at first hand how
she starved the miners and their families back
to work no words of St Francis here. I well
remember going into a bar in the
Nottinghamshire coalfield to buy double
steak sandwiches for hungry people.
One of the finest pieces of work ever pro-
duced by the Church of England the Faith
in the City report was an analysis of some
of her corrosive policies. At about the same
time I chaired a Churches Council for Health
and Healing committee on depression which
concluded that government policies were a
principal factor in peoples mental suffering.
The document was returned to me by Mrs
Thatchers advisers covered in red ink.
Regarding ITV, when it broadcast the
politically embarrassing documentary Death
on the Rock about the SAS shootings on
Gibraltar, and in spite of the film being exon-
erated by the good Tory (and Catholic peer)
Lord Windlesham, Mrs Thatcher passed the
1990 Broadcasting Act to stymie the private
The Editor of The Tablet 1 King Street Cloisters, Clifton Walk, London W6 0GY
Fax 020 8748 1550 Email
All correspondence, including email, must give a full postal address and contact telephone number. The Editor reserves the right to shorten letters.
Margaret Thatcher at the Conservative
Party Conference in 1988: a dissenter
with the lonely zeal of the outsider.
Photo: Reuters
20 April 2013
of the Church, in which there is neither Jew
nor Greek, male nor female, and in which we
are all called to serve one another.
Ruth Dipple
Lechlade, Gloucestershire
Fr Paul Gunter tells us that the washing of feet
on Maundy Thursday is limited to men, and
that only the Pope may do otherwise. He must
be unaware that the Pope was this year con-
tinuing his practice as Archbishop of Buenos
Aires. On one occasion, for example, he
washed the feet of newborn infants and
pregnant women. The difference is that then
he was setting an example for priests of his
own diocese; now he has set an example for
bishops and priests throughout the Church,
including Fr Gunter.
(Dr) Michael Hoskin
Fr Gunter suggests that it is wrong to wash
womens feet during the Holy Thursday
liturgy. The gesture, he tells us, is intrinsic -
ally attached to the priesthood, because the
rite is mimetic. By contrast, papal liturgy can-
not be an exemplar for other liturgies. Do I
detect a lack of logic?
Benedict XVIs liturgical practice was
adopted as normative among restorationists
who emptied their closets of candlestick, lace,
brocaded fiddlebacks and arcane ceremo-
nial. The mimetic principle has been liberally
applied to Benedictine liturgy, even though
Fr Gunter insists that local churches cannot
use papal liturgy as precedent.
If it is permissible to imitate the liturgical
use and practice of one Pope, why cannot we
use the same mimetic principle in respect of
the practice of another?
(Fr) Jim Lawlor
Why Cardinal OBrien should return
I have followed with interest the various letters
that have appeared in the press, about
Cardinal Keith OBrien. There has been a con-
siderable polarisation of views. On reflection,
it is like a grieving process. We initially go into
shock and we do not want to believe that it
has happened. It is common to even deny that
it has happened. Then we look for answers,
perhaps it could have been prevented, and we
can also look to blame somebody. We can even
blame the person who has left us grieving. We
get angry, before beginning to accept what has
happened. That acceptance recognises the
strengths and weaknesses of the person who
has left us, and the fact that they were a flawed
human being.
We can see this same process in relation to
Cardinal OBrien. We were shocked, and we
did not want to believe the allegations. We
looked for answers, we blamed the accusers,
because we felt that they had caused the pain
we were feeling. We are still grappling with
many of these feelings, and we have not yet
reached a position of full understanding or
What is the reality of the situation? Cardinal
OBrien was much loved by many for his com-
mitment to all and for his defence of our faith.
He was well respected by many outside the
Catholic community. There were, however, cer-
tain aspects of his personality which have been
exposed and which have caused concern. It
is not the lapses in his commitment to
celibacy, but the potential abuse of power. He
was in a position of power in relation to sem-
inarians, and young priests. If he did abuse
his position then that was a betrayal.
Forgiveness is important for all those
involved, but we are taught that repairing the
damage caused and hopefully achieving rec-
onciliation is key to forgiveness. Perhaps it is
only then that we can reach understanding
and acceptance.
Cardinal OBrien should accept the part he
has played and seek to repair the damage
caused by his abuse of power. This should
involve mediation with the priests involved.
The cardinal needs to be open with the Catholic
community. The prodigal son returned to face
his father and brother and turned his back on
his previous behaviour. The cardinal needs to
return with humility
Alan Draper
Kingoldrum, Kirriemuir, Angus
Pope Francis prefers the milonga
When your writer Margaret Hebblethwaite
met Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio in Argentina,
she discovered from him that he was a lover
of music (From dark days to spring,
23 March). In the book El Papa Francisco
(publisher: Salani Editore) by the two
journalists Sergio Rubin and Francesca
Ambrogetti, the cardinal, when asked about
his musical tastes, replied, Among my
favourites is Beethovens overture Leonore No.
3 in Furtwnglers version. For me he is the
best conductor of some of his symphonies and
of the works of Wagner (page 116).
He added, Oh, yes, I like tango moltissimo.
It is something within me And then he
added, Yes, as a youth I used to dance the
tango, but I prefer the milonga. However, like
most Jesuits I know, I have not heard him chant
the Mass.
(Mgr) Charles G. Vella
Milan, Italy
For more of your correspondence,
go to the new Letters Extra section of
The Tablets expanded website:
Gods will. How do we know it? If we are
silent within ourselves, and quieten all our
desires and all our opinions, and if we
think lovingly, with all our soul and
without words, may your will be done,
what we then feel without any uncertainty
that we must do (even if, in some ways,
it may be wrong) is Gods will. If we ask
him for bread, he does not give us stones
The real greatness of Christianity lies
in that it does not look for a super natural
cure for suffering, but a supernatural use
for suffering
Simone Weil
Women Mystics of the Contemporary Era
(St Pauls, 2003)
Whenever the truth is preached against
injustices, oppression and the abuse of
power, that truth is going to cause pain.
I know Ive already mentioned this sim-
ple comparison that campesino [peasant]
made on day. He said to me, Monseor,
if you put your hand into a pot of salty
water and your hand is healthy, nothing
happens. But if you have a scratch or sore
of some kind, ouch, it hurts! The Church
is the salt of the world, and naturally
where there are wounds, the salt is
going to burn
Oscar Romero
Monseor Romero
by Maria Lopez Vigil
(Orbis Books, 2013)
St George was a man who abandoned one
army for another: he gave up the rank of
tribune to enlist as a soldier for Christ.
Eager to encounter the enemy, he first
stripped away his worldly wealth by giv-
ing all he had to the poor. Then, free and
unencumbered, bearing the shield of faith,
he plunged into the thick of the battle, an
ardent soldier for Christ. Clearly what he
did serves to teach us a valuable lesson:
if we are afraid to strip ourselves of our
worldly possessions, then we are unfit to
make a strong defence of the faith Dear
brothers, let us not only admire the
courage of this fighter in Heavens army
but follow his example. Let us be inspired
to strive for the reward of heavenly glory,
keeping in mind his example, so that we
will not be swayed from our path.
St Peter Damian
Tuesday is the Solemnity of St George
The living Spirit
20 April 2013
ary Douglas, seen by many as the
leading British anthropologist of
the second half of the twentieth
century, came to the attention of
the general reader through her study of the
abominations of Leviticus, a chapter in her
1966 book Purity and Danger. Animals with
cloven hooves that did not chew the cud were
forbidden as food, she argued then, because
they were anomalies viewed as out of place
in an ordered world. They were thus both
dangerous and an assertion of the holy.
It happened that her restless mind arrived
at a quite different account of Leviticus later
in her career (related to the universalism of
Gods love), but she had made a start at search-
ing for structure and sense, rather than leaving
Leviticus and Numbers as neglected heaps
of arbitrary laws.
In 1970, a chapter called The Bog Irish
in her book Natural Symbols made an even
more striking claim about the Catholic Church
and ritual. She argued that Friday abstinence
was the only ritual which brought Christian
symbols down into the kitchen and on to the
dinner table in the manner of Jewish rules of
impurity. She questioned the decision of the
bishops of England and Wales in 1967 to end
obligatory abstinence. People who have
become unritualistic in every other way, she
wrote, will eventually lose their capacity for
responding to condensed symbols such as
that of the Blessed Sacrament.
Two papers from which that chapter grew
are now published in A Very Personal Method.
The first, published in New Society in 1966,
was called The contempt of ritual. It dis-
cussed antecedents of modern denigration of
ritual as worthless and primitive. Calvin
thought the papists had gone after the shadow
of empty ritual, and the nineteenth-century
biblical scholar Robertson Smith traced a
path of progress from superstitious Catholic
formulas to a religion of spirit and truth with
a personal relation with Christ. As for Sir
James Frazer, he defined primitive cultures
as those that were magic-ridden.
In 1968, Mary Douglas used the same title
The contempt of ritual for a lecture at
Blackfriars, Oxford, later published in New
Blackfriars. Here the Bog Irishman (her
forebear) made his entrance to introduce the
theory of elaborated and restricted speech
codes, ideas she developed from Basil
Bernstein. Restricted codes are generated in
the sort of family where the question, Why
cant I do that? is answered by Because hes
your father or Because youre the youngest.
In other types of family the answer is elabor -
ated: Think what it would feel like if someone
did that to you or Because your father is
worried. The restricted speech code went
with positional systems (as seen in working-
class families); the elaborated code with per-
sonal systems of a middle-class kind. Mary
Douglas does not despise the restricted code.
It can say as much tacitly as the elaborated
code. (As liturgy says more than words.) She
found in her own hierarchical family and
school upbringing that the child does not
have to imagine the sufferings of the toad
under the harrow. The home is more full of
wit and laughter, for a strict set of categories
is the basis for endless banter about attempts
to evade or usurp obligation.
Mary Douglas died in 2007, aged 86, still
bright of eye and ready to be mischievous in
argument. One of her latest papers appears
first in this new collection, edited by Richard
Fardon, the professor of West African anthro-
pology at the School of Oriental and African
Studies, whose intellectual biography of
Douglas was published in 1999. Called A feel-
ing for hierarchy, it elucidates engagingly the
nature of hierarchy, illustrated from her own
life. At the Convent of the Sacred Heart,
Roehampton (where Antonia White had been
so unhappy), Douglas found times and spaces
loaded with meanings, and clothes too (brown
gloves for calling on Reverend Mother; white
gloves for holy days). By hierarchy, Mary
Douglas did not mean a tyranny. One of the
10 rules of hierarchy in this paper is: The top
position is more ritual than effective or political.
Power is so diffused that the husband, chief
or king has little of it. She liked hierarchies
that functioned in a balanced way, and she
recognised hierarchy in the Catholic Church.
Having done her fieldwork among the Lele
in Congo, whom she revisited, she was hor-
rified by the use of sorcery accusations in the
1980s and after. In old Lele society, no child
was accused of witchcraft; it was a means to
even out unwonted concentrations of power.
She was disgusted by Lele who had become
Christians going on witch-hunts, encouraged
by some clergy, with incidental cruelty. This
new cultural role for witchcraft followed on,
she saw, from regarding old Lele minor deities
as devils. The Lele had been essentially
monotheists, with lesser deities of a status
like that of djinns. Her creative solution was
to recognise these preternatural entities in
Christian teaching as angelic powers.
In Culture and Crises, a companion volume
to A Very Personal Method, Richard Fardon
has collected papers less autobiographical or
related to Catholic concerns. It includes, though,
her Cultural theory, which applies crucially
to the position of al-Qaeda, for example, in the
modern world, and must be of importance to
any thoughtful reader, Christian or not.
Mary Douglas worked not as a Catholic
anthropologist, but as an anthropologist
whom some colleagues were shocked to find
was a Catholic. Many ideas here could help
her co-religionists in attempting to understand
what they do, and what they should do.
A Very Personal Method: anthropo-
logical writings drawn from life
Mary Douglas (ed. Richard Fardon)
SAGE, 328PP, 85 (CASED), 29.99 (PAPER)
Tablet bookshop price 76.50; 27 Tel 01420 592974
Christopher Howse is an assistant editor of
The Daily Telegraph.
Adrian Brewer left The Daily Telegraphto farm
in East Sussex.
Lynn Roberts is the author of the poetry
sequence Rosa Mundi.
Suzi Feay is a writer and broadcaster who was
literary editor of The Independent on Sunday for
11 years.
Theo Hobsonis a writer on religious affairs.
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I have never encountered any book closer to the
Sleeping Beautys briar hedge: a bramble bush of
narrative, powdered with roses of complacency
and interminable extracts, PAGE 18
Hard roads
to freedom
Cruel Crossing: escaping Hitler
across the Pyrenees
Edward Stourton
Tablet bookshop price 18 Tel 01420 592974
he Freedom Trail, or Chemin de la
Libert, is a hard four-day trek over the
Pyrenees from St-Girons in France to
Esterri dAneu in neutral Spain, retracing
one of the toughest wartime escape routes.
In July each year, over four days and 40
miles, walkers climb 15,000ft and descend
11,000ft. In 2011, Edward Stourton joined
them to make a series of radio programmes,
which has now been turned into an
engrossing book that uncovers a complex
and relatively neglected chapter of the
Second World War. Charming but astute,
Stourton captures not only the extraordinary
courage of the escapers and the passeurs, or
guides, who helped them, but the sense of
danger and excitement as they evaded their
pursuers. It was an adventure, and they
were young.
Stourton begins by introducing us to his
his fellow walkers, some of them descendants
of those who made the perilous trek during
wartime. They of course had relied on the
passeurs who guided them, and their
stories in turn lead to other comrades, and
to greater events. Thus a tightly twisted
episode of twentieth-century history unfolds.
In this corner of France, which Stourton
knows well, the war was a convoluted and
grubby affair. Occupied France was the
north of the country; here in the south, the
free zone was administered from Vichy.
Part of the purpose of this book, says
Stourton, is to unlock the secrets of this
most secretive region. Im not sure he
opens many locked chests, but he skilfully
weaves intimate, compelling personal
accounts into the broad historical canvas, to
show why in this area of France a kind of
silence still reigns. For every act of courage
there seems to be an act of perfidy; for every
rsistant, a milicien or pro-German
militiaman; for every kind policeman, an
agent de passage with dubious motives.
Killed by the enemies of France is a
common obfuscation on memorials.
From the British perspective, the escape
lines that lead to and over the Pyrenees were
an escape route for downed Allied airmen,
soldiers and PoWs. In the early months of
the conflict, the War Office established MI9
to aid evaders and escapers. It was MI9 that
made sure airmen were provided with
miniature compasses, hidden maps printed
on silk and bootlace chainsaws. They
arranged payment for taking men across
the mountains (said to be the equivalent of
40 for an officer, 20 for other ranks).
Norman Crockatt, head of MI9, was clear:
it was every mans duty to evade capture or
escape and rejoin his unit. So for the
stranded airmen, trying to get back to
England was a duty; but for those who
helped them, it was a choice, often a deadly
one. Capture meant torture, execution or
the death camps. As one would expect,
Stourton, one of the BBCs big beasts,
marshalls his facts with care. Boys' Own
Adventure is tempered with harrowing
accounts from the concentration camps.
What became known as the escape lines
some of them now famous, such as the
Comet line emerged spontaneously. The
high proportion of women who were
prepared to risk their lives to help people to
freedom is striking. Dde de Jongh, a
Belgian in her early twenties, started helping
escapers when she was a nurse in Bruges.
She made her first journey south in 1941,
escorting a group of Belgians wanted by the
Gestapo and a mysterious English woman
called Miss Richards. (De Jongh proved her
legendary toughness swimming back and
forth across the Somme for an hour and a
half. Miss Richards, who refused to remove
her panama hat or her white bloomers, was
pushed over in an inner tube.) De Jongh died
in 2007, a famous woman, and rightly so.
But Edward Stourton has spoken to many
almost forgotten heroes who made the
crossing as parcels or as postmen. Jeanne
Rogalle, a passeur in her teens, told him, We
felt that in the mountains we were
Alas, the truth was very different. The
crossing was desperately tough. Many
recount how impossible it was to get into
the rhythm of walking; one serviceman
ruefully describes wading through snow up
to his testicles. Another recounts: It
started to rain and in 10 minutes we were
soaked to the skin, it simply poured down
with the wind driving great gusts into our
faces which stung like so much rice. Towards
midnight I felt that I was finished
Although we think of the chemins as
escape routes for our fighting men, only 1,500
Allied servicemen took this route; an
estimated 30,000 French and Belgian men,
women and children made the crossing. Much
of the demand came from the notorious
rafles or round-ups of Jewish refugees.
There are some truly harrowing
descriptions of families crossing:
grandmothers left behind on the
mountainside, a crying baby that the
passeur was minded to suffocate rather
than risk attracting the enemy. But there
are uplifting outcomes, too. Jeanne Rogalle
was reunited after 60 years with the baby
she carried over the mountains in 1942.
The roll of honour for the Comet line
alone remembers 155 dead. Thirty-seven of
those died in the womens concentration
camp at Ravensbrck. Why did they do it?
To free my country, said de Jongh. Perhaps.
Stourton gets closer to the heart of things, I
think, with this description of an arrest in
the French capital: The heat of a Parisian
June in wartime, the knock on the door,
and the excitement of a secret life of
resistance suddenly dissolving into the shock
of arrest and the ominous sense of what was
to come. One of Stourtons chemin-hiking
companions, Bernard Holvoet, grandson of
a Belgian count who played a key role in
keeping the Comet line open, asks himself
every time he lays a wreath in his
grandfathers honour, the obvious and most
unsettling question. What would I have
done? One can never know, but joining
Edward Stourtons evocative personal
pilgrimage as he makes the Cruel Crossing
takes us a step closer. Adrian Brewer
. . . for everyone in the world
who is trying to make it better.
Robert N. Bellah, Emeritus, UC Berkeley
978-1-58901-969-0, paperback, $29.95 / 24.00
20 April 2013
Alban Books Ltd, 14 Belford Road, Edinburgh EH4 3BL, UK
Tel: +44(0)131 226 2217 Fax: +44(0)131 225 5999 Email:
A Novel
Orbis Books
978 1 62698 008 2
304 pages PB 12.99
A Gospel
Orbis Books
978 1 62698 014 3
168 pages PB 16.99
Memories in Mosaic
Orbis Books
978 1 62698 010 5
320 pages PB 19.99
Alexander Ogorodnikov and the
Struggle for Religious Freedom in
978 0 8028 6743 8
336 pages HB 18.99
Why an Ancient Biblical Vision is
Key to the Worlds Future
978 0 8028 4420 0
432 pages PB 23.99
Anthropology and Culture
978 0 8028 6417 8
200 pages PB 19.99
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Spring Highlights
Mad mosaic
Self-Portrait as a Young Man
Roy Strong
Tablet bookshop price 22.50 Tel 01420 592974
ir Roy Strong: director of the National
Portrait Gallery at 31, director of the
V&A at 38, curator of exhibitions such as
1974s The Destruction of the Country
House, which changed national attitudes
to the buildings we were losing; author of
books such as Lost Treasures of Britain;
creator of an extraordinary Renaissance-
esque garden; High Anglican; camp
macaroni; and sporter of some very strange
moustaches I pounced on this memoir of
his early life with huge curiosity and interest.
Bits of it are very interesting, and if the
whole book had been presented in a series
of fiercely edited articles (How I fled the
curse of my AWFUL [sic] family, Daily
Mail, 2 March) it would probably be a more
consistently entertaining and enlightening
experience. As it is, I have never
encountered any book closer in structure to
the Sleeping Beautys briar hedge: an
interwoven bramble bush of narrative, lightly
powdered with roses of complacency and
interminable extracts from letters and diaries.
This is the life of a shy, gawky academic
duckling, from egg to swanhood, and from
the suburbs of north London to the letters
of congratulation from a whole gamut of
national museum directors when he
succeeded in 1967 to the throne of the
National Portrait Gallery. His path,
however, goes from A to B via Gee! Oh! and
I. We get his wifes sad death in 2003, his
accession to the V&A, the house bought
after his marriage, his weekends at Gianni
Versaces villa in the 1990s, the death of
Jean Muir in 1995, his meeting with Hardy
Amies in 1970, his elopement, and the
requiem for his confessor in 2010 Strong
takes time by the scruff of the neck and
shakes it into a mad mosaic, punctuated by
a continual coy of whom more later, and
as we shall see, so that reading his life is
like being buttonholed by the pre- and
post-swan, both talking at once, one
invoking a sepia and one a Technicolor
His early life sounds drab and miserable,
with a tyrannical father and a feral brother,
later the bane of his life; however, he stayed
at home until he was 28, his parents bought
him a desk when he graduated, and he
turned his bedroom into a Grand Tourists
study, so it cant have been all gloom. He did
work extremely hard, clambering from the
unutterable greyness of his childhood (full
of visits to the theatre, opera and V&A) to a
stratum of academic rigour and possibility.
His further ascent into a world of
burgeoning connection, visual flourish
and catty obits cannot negate his
achievements, but it does temper them with
a glaze of smuggery. Lynn Roberts
20 April 2013
Magic conjured
with words
Binocular Vision
Edith Pearlman
Tablet bookshop price 15.30 Tel 01420 592974
he novelist Ann Patchett makes high
claims for Edith Pearlman. Put her
stories beside those of John Updike and
Alice Munro. Thats where they belong, she
announces in her introduction. Of one
story, Self-Reliance, she relates: I knew
the story was good when I first read it, but
when I had read it 20 times I could see that
it was flawless I felt like a junior
watchmaker taking apart a Vacherin
Constantin. A few stories into this
compendious volume, which covers work
from 1977 to 2010, and you realise Patchett
is not exaggerating.
Pearlman doesnt go in for flashy
sentences or narrative tricks. Shes like a
magician with few props, and those the
plainest: the cup, the box, the ball. This is
concentrated writing, where complex
information is signalled by a mere
and some
rereading to
extract their
essence. Take
Day of Awe,
begins: He
was the last
Jew in a cursed land. A cursed country, a
country of tricksters. Robert is visiting his
son Lex, who lives in the capital city of a
Jewless country in South America. The
repetition conjures up this elderly grump,
suspicious alike of Lexs homosexuality (he
notes a faggy lift of one shoulder) and
Jaime (it was pronounced Hymie), Lexs
adopted son, meeting Robert for the first
time. It reveals Roberts unease among
gentiles, and his unspoken fears about his
sons assimilation. The boys scribbled
artworks, stuck to the fridge door, are
described as unambitious efforts and the
unkindness of the adjective is striking. By
the very last line, via Roberts minor
epiphany in a Catholic church, the
disappointing boy has become his
grandson. This little miracle takes place
over a mere 12 pages, among topics such as
travellers bowels, colonial history and
bird life.
South America also features in Vaquita
(1996), where Seora Marta Perera de
Lefkowitz, originally Polish, is the ageing
Minister of Health, urging a return to
breastfeeding (and hence natural
contraception) among the population. On a
trip to a remote area, Seora Perera spots a
young Indian girl suckling a child in the
woods. Jew and Indian. Queen Isabellas
favourite victims. The encounter prompts
an impulsive gesture.
Jewishness forms an important, although
unemphatic thread. If Love Were All is a
novel in miniature, as American Sonya finds
herself in London during the Blitz, helping
waifs and strays, attracted alike to a German
refugee and a French teenager. Mama!
cries a distraught Polish boy, though his
mother was no doubt dead. Pearlman
conjures up a tragedy in a brisk phrase,
where another writer would elaborate.
In the title story, a mere four pages long, a
10-year-old girl spies on the couple next
door, seeing almost all but understanding
nothing. Unlike the child, Pearlman always
notes the crucial detail that reveals the
most. Theres a sharp wit, an aching
compassion and a hard-won humanism in
these elegant tales. Suzi Feay
Bloomsbury Spring Books
Spiritual Letters
Sister Wendy Beckett
Apart from her celebrity status as 'the art nun', Sister
Wendy has been approached throughout her life for
counsel on the spiritual life and the life of prayer. Here,
for the rst time, are collected some of the nest of
her responses in the form of letters. This little book is a
treasure trove of wisdom and sound simple advice.
HARDBACK | 9781408188439 | 14.99
How to Read a Graveyard
Travels in the Company of the Dead
Peter Stanford
A taboo-breaking exploration of what graveyards and
memorials to the dead can tell our secular, scientic
and sceptical age about our eternal fate. From Roman
catacombs to ecoburials, via municipal cemeteries, war
graves and Days of the Dead, Peter Stanford has hand-
picked 10 graveyards to show us how to read graves,
what to look out for and how even the most initially unpromising exploration
can enthrall.
HARDBACK | 9781441179777 | 16.99
On Heaven and Earth
Pope Francis on Faith, Family and the Church in the
21st Century
Jorge Mario Bergoglio and Abraham Skorka
The rst English language book by the new Pope is
an open and frank conversation on faith and reason
between Pope Francis and Rabbi Skorka. These
personal dialogues, addressing atheism, abortion, homosexuality and other
issues, give a rst-hand account of Pope Francis views and what these mean
for his Papacy.
HARDBACK | 9781472903815 | 14.99
Why Rousseau Was Wrong
Christianity and the Secular Soul
Frances Ward
Tracing the impact of key Enlightenment philosophers
on our increasingly secular society, Frances Ward
outlines an alternative model of citizenship based on
character and virtue rather than identity. Ward shows
how the Church can help to shape national corporate
life by strengthening bonds of hospitality and trust.
PAPERBACK | 9781441115539 | 14.99
20 April 2013
and Muslim
by Rowan
. . . genuinely important.
David Martin, Fellow of the British
Academy and Emeritus Professor of
Sociology, London School of Economics
978-1-58901-949-2, paperback, $24.95 / 19.50
Unasked questions
Archbishop Justin Welby: the road
to Canterbury
Andrew Atherstone
Tablet bookshop price 7.20 Tel 01420 592974
he Church of England has very strong
historic links with the public schools.
Various Archbishops of Canterbury were
former headmasters. On one level, of
course, public school is an annoying
misnomer. On another level it tells a truth:
these schools were deeply imbued with a
public-service ethos. They aimed to teach
privileged young men how to serve their
nation, and its empire and rooted such
service in Anglican faith. In the 1960s, this
ethos began to seem dubious, nostalgic, out
of touch: surely the national Church had to
move away from its public-school aura, in
order to find new relevance. But instead of
fading away, public-school religion became
central to an Evangelical revival. And it
gradually became clear that this revival was
the main source of vitality in British
Justin Welby emerges from Andrew
Atherstones highly sympathetic
biographical sketch as deeply involved in
this story. He went to Eton, but only began
serious engagement with religion when, in
1974, he went to teach in Kenya on his gap
year (a relic of imperial service). At
Cambridge he joined the Christian Union,
and, more tellingly, attended holiday
camps, or house parties, for public
schoolboys and former public schoolboys
(they were held in vacant boarding schools).
When in London, he attended Holy
Trinity Brompton (HTB), the centre of
public-school religion; he met his wife
there. This church was gently expanding
under the leadership of the Revd Sandy
Millar (Eton, Cambridge); in 1990, Nicky
Gumbel (Eton, Cambridge) transformed
the Alpha course there, which replicated
large elements of the house-party format.
Welby, now a young oil-company executive,
was involved. Its important to note that
Alpha was not just about providing a niche
form of Anglicanism for former public
schoolboys. Its strange genius was to seek
the spread of public-school Evangelicalism
throughout the land, to universalise
the house-party spirit, of informality,
fellowship and a slightly old-fashioned
sense of order and duty. Of course
this entails a haven from the bloodthirsty
perpetual sexual revolution of our time.
Atherstone supplies no evidence that the
young Welby had any interest in theology,
beyond the pious formulas of the house
parties, designed for spotty adolescents. He
later recounted that his university years
grounded him in a clear and simple
understanding of the Gospel. This religious
tradition is wary of any analysis of
Christianity that is not safely rooted in the
community of like minds. It looks over
at theology students (and professors)
succumbing to doubt and liberal vagueness,
and determines to keep its distance.
Well, not everyone has to be Rowan
Williams. But there is strikingly little
evidence of the young Welby wrestling with
any aspect of this creed, attending to liberal
objections to its conservatism in doctrine,
politics and gender politics. Did he discover
complexity amid his clear and simple
understanding of the Gospel? On one level,
he doubtless did: lifes practical challenges
included the death of his baby daughter in a
car accident. But on another level, no: he
seems never to have been seriously
bothered by the obvious liberal objections to
the clarity and simplicity of Evangelicalism
(that, for example, it tends to moral
legalism and to biblical literalism, and, in
the case of the Alpha course, that it is prone
to slightly reactionary bourgeois
smugness). Public-school Evangelicalism
sees little merit in such self-doubt:
the point is to get out there and bring
people to Christ. Less analysis, more
In the 1990s he was a parish priest in the
Midlands (he promoted the Alpha course,
of course), and also began to be known as a
financial ethicist. Then he started working
with Coventry Cathedrals International
Centre for Reconciliation, including
travelling to danger spots in Africa and the
Middle East. He proved a natural diplomat,
full of self-deprecating charm and steely
determination. He was appointed Dean of
Liverpool in 2007, where he launched a
confident fusion of traditional and modern
worship styles. In 2011 he was appointed
Bishop of Durham; the following year he sat
on the Parliamentary Commission on
Banking Standards, and his calm acuity
impressed many. He occasionally reaffirmed
his commitment to the Evangelical position
on sexuality, but in a muted way, stressing
the need for careful, respectful engagement
with the other point of view.
His rise exemplifies the core Evangelical
strengths of can-do confidence and cheerful
practicality. This confidence is rooted in
experience of the Church as a coherent,
distinctive culture, full of dynamism.
Non-Evangelical Anglicans are less familiar
with this experience; their sense of
fellowship, of unity in a distinctive common
identity, is patchy. Are they united by their
acceptance of liberal values, including the
validity of homosexuality? Up to a point,
but this does not confer distinctness from
secular normality. When they seek sharper
identity here, they weaken their Christian
distinctiveness: its a conundrum that has
paralysed the rest of Anglicanism for
decades. Their crisis is even starker after
Rowan Williams: he was vaguely expected
to revive liberal Anglo-Catholicism, but in
effect declared it a dubious hybrid.
It might sound hyperbolic, but
non-Evangelical British Anglicanism is now
weaker than it has ever been. One sign of
this was Giles Frasers interview with Justin
Welby for The Guardian last summer.
Fraser liberal Anglicanisms fluent poster
boy avoided any awkward mention of the
crisis over homosexuality (the conversation
was almost entirely focused on reform of
the banking system) and warmly endorsed
Welby for Canterbury. Between the lines
was written: we liberals have lost, at least
for now; lets admit that public-school
Evangelicalism is the Churchs only real
source of coherence and energy.
Theo Hobson
The Archbishop of Canterbury: his
public-school Evangelicalism is the
Church of Englands only real source of
coherence and energy
20 April 2013
n the autumn of 1959, an unusu-
ally exotic and sophisticated
student appeared at the Royal
College of Art. At 27 years old, the
American Ronald Brooks Kitaj had a wife, a
child, a house and a car. He had studied art
at Cooper Union in New York, the Academy
of Fine Art in Vienna and the Ruskin School
of Drawing in Oxford and in between, more
impressively, had travelled widely in the mer-
chant marine and the US army.
Among a stellar generation of RCA students
including David Hockney, Kitaj stood out not
just for his maturity but for his draughtsman-
ship. The art critic Robert Hughes stated
simply in the 1970s that Kitaj draws better
than almost anyone else, and any doubts
about his judgement must evaporate before
the masterful drawings in two new exhibitions
that together form the artists first retrospective
since his suicide in California in 2007.
Under the joint title R.B. Kitaj: Obsessions,
the two shows (until 16 June) trace slightly
different paths through the artists career.
Analyst for Our Time at Pallant House,
Chichester, looks at his broader preoccupation
with culture, politics and society, while The
Art of Identity at Londons Jewish Museum
focuses on his growing concern with what it
meant to be a Jewish painter. By the mid
1980s it had become his obsession to do for
Jews what Morandi did for jars.
His interest in Judaism developed late.
Born in Cleveland, Ohio, in 1932 to an atheist
Russian-Jewish mother, Jeanne Brooks, and
a Hungarian father who left when he was one
(the surname Kitaj was his Viennese-Jewish
stepfathers), he was not brought up in the
Jewish faith, and although he married his
second wife, Sandra Fisher, in a London syn-
agogue, he remained intensely uncomfortable
with organised ritual. He had been known to
walk out of Yom Kippur ceremonies, and once
sent a note to his friend the theologian Rabbi
Friedlander asking: Can you put the case for
a Supreme Being on a postcard while standing
on one leg? He got no reply.
It was Hannah Arendts controversial
account of the Eichmann trial in the early
1970s that awakened Kitajs consciousness of
his Jewish heritage; it was the Jew as social
outsider that he identified with. Jews fascinate
me, he later told the critic Andrew Lambirth.
I want to know why they are always in
trouble. The concept of a Diasporist art
that he developed gradually expanded to
embrace other persecuted outsiders: African
Americans, Palestinians, homosexuals,
The fixed point in a Diasporist existence,
for Kitaj, was literature. Books appear every-
where in his paintings. In Unpacking My
Library (1990/91), we see the artist huddled
possessively over open boxes, putting down
books like roots in a new home. Books also
feature as Diasporist travel companions. A
volume sits on the window ledge beside Kitajs
friend the art historian Michael Podro, pic-
tured as The Jewish Rider (1984/85) travelling
by train from Budapest to Auschwitz, past a
blasted landscape where smoke rises from a
gas-oven chimney to drift across a blackened
Andy [Warhol] came from soup cans and
I came from books, he explained to Lambirth.
Books and book learning are for me what
trees and woods are for a landscape painter.
He worked with piles of books around his
easel and collaged handwritten passages on to
his paintings, seeing his compulsion for verbal
commentary as part of the Jewish Rabbinical
tradition of interpretation: his first solo show
at Marlborough Fine Art in 1963 was titled
Pictures with Commentary, Pictures without
Commentary. His web of references certainly
benefits from explication. His commentary
on his Holocaust painting If Not, Not (1975/76)
reveals the literary influences of T.S. Eliots
The Waste Land and Conrads Heart of
Darkness, and the artistic inspirations of
Giorgione, Matisse and Bassano. Dominated
by the gatehouse at Auschwitz, this painting
still manages, like many of his most difficult
images, to seduce the viewer through the
beauty of its forms and colours.
His colours, his collage technique and his
mix of high and low cultural sources have
sometimes led to Kitajs mislabelling as a pop
artist, but he was really a Symbolist in Sixties
dress with a Renaissance taste in iconography.
Unlike the common iconographic language
of Renaissance, however, Kitajs language was
private and obscure, and the complexity that
intrigued earlier audiences struck later ones
as pretentious. When in 1994 the Tate paid
him the signal honour for a living artist of a
major retrospective, what should have been
his moment of glory became his undoing. The
critics panned the exhibition, subjecting his
paintings and accompanying commentaries
to savage and highly personal attacks. The
wandering Jew, the T.S. Eliot of painting?
asked The Independents Andrew Graham-
Dixon. Kitaj turns out instead to be the Wizard
of Oz: a small man with a megaphone held to
his lips. When the artists wife, Sandra, suffered
an aneurysm two weeks after the show closed,
he blamed the critics for her death. Three years
later, he abandoned England for California.
Seeing his work today, the vitriol it aroused
is hard to comprehend. But the 1990s were
a different era, when Kitajs form of conviction
art, so in tune with the 1960s zeitgeist, had
begun to look dated. Six years before his Tate
show, a new generation of young British artists
had been launched in Damien Hirsts game-
changing exhibition Freeze. The artist who
in 1962 had singlehandedly and with one
exhibition brought the intellect back into the
forum of British art, in the words of Tom
Phillips RA, became a casualty of a new post-
modern intellectualism detached from
personal conviction.
The pendulum is now swinging the other
way. Postmodernism hasnt stopped perse-
cution and displacement; rather, Kitajs
concept of Diasporism is acquiring ever-wider
application. The evident seriousness with
which visitors to these new shows are
approaching his work seems, in fact, to justify
his belief that there will always be pictures
whose complexity, difficulty, mystery will be
ambitious enough to resemble the patterns
of human existence and even, perhaps, his
hope that art can mend the world a little.
R.B. Kitaj created a Jewish modern art which he described
as diasporic. Two major retrospectives explore the work of
one of the most significant painters of the post-war period
Kitajs If Not, Not, of 1975/76. Scottish
National Gallery of Modern Art
20 April 2013
The Firework-Makers
Daughter: a delightful show,
sweetly told
Straight to the heart
The Firework-Makers Daughter
ontemporary opera is a peculiar beast,
using a language hardly anyone under-
stands to tell a story of direct emotional
impact. Sometimes, through a weird alchemy
and sheer conviction, it works as with Gerald
Barrys Importance of Being Earnest, which
I wrote about a couple of weeks ago. More
often, you just feel the story wants to be told
in another medium altogether. These things
are rare and expensive enough for us always
to have unrealistic expectations, which is
unfair on composers of an art form that has
yielded only a few score, gold-plated master-
works from countless thousands of attempts
over 400 years and barely a handful since
One reason for this might be that serious
modern composers look down their noses at
colleagues who write music people actually
like. David Bruce has never been too bothered
by that, and is further freed from modernist
tyranny in this work with words by Glyn
Maxwell, taken from a Philip Pullman story,
by the fact that its written for children. Given
licence to write approachable music, Bruce
and the Opera Group (;
on tour until June) have made an enchanting
evening that should return for many a
Christmas show.
Its a pretty myth about growing up. We are
in a storybook East of Chinese hats, gnomic
wisdom and long, thin beards; Lila (Mary
Bevan) is a 13-year-old girl whose father
like many fathers feels firework-making is
no career for a woman, so she sets off with
her friend, the lovelorn elephant Hamlet
(James Laing), to steal Royal Sulphur from
the fearsome Fire-Fiend on Mount Merapi.
Pullmans imagination furnishes plenty of
colourful obstacles (pirates, jungle) on the
way, and the story ends with a firework-
making competition and a moral about the
qualities courage and faith we all need.
It is as much a visual as it is a musical treat.
Designer Dick Bird works with two geniuses
of puppetry, Sally Todd and Steve Tiplady of
Indefinite Articles, and lighting designer Guy
Hoare, to conjure an enchanted world with
magic lanterns and shadow puppets; firework
displays are created with brilliantly clever
projections of sand and coloured liquids.
Town, jungle, river, mountain and prison are
wrought out of mere light and
The same resourcefulness
extends to the performers: five
singers and an orchestra of nine.
Bruce uses an unusual band
including horn, accordion, harp
and two percussionists to cre-
ate a wonderfully varied world
that feels like many more players,
and imitates the sounds of other
instruments banjo, gamelan
orchestra as well as the natural
noises of the jungle. Eastern scales and the
hieratic sounds of temple bells complete the
picture in an amazingly deft score, which
finally lets itself off the leash for the firework
show featuring comedy German and Italian,
set to workshop pastiches of Wagner and
Neapolitan ice-cream music.
There is some real and tuneful singing called
for, too. Mary Bevan, whose headlong young
career snaps at the heels of her sister Sophies,
performs Lila with bouncy, eager naivety, an
immensely attractive stage manner and her
usual musical intelligence. Backed up by the
lyric tenor of Amar Muchhala, the comic tal-
ents of Andrew Slater (equally jolly as
unsuccessful pirate and bloodthirsty king)
and Wyn Pencarreg, and James Laings haunt-
ing counter-tenor elephant who is finally
reunited with his lady love in the zoo this
is a delightful show, sweetly told and with
just the right amount of seriousness to ballast
its charm. Robert Thicknesse
Beyond redemption
Norways Soul: Re-evaluating
Knut Hamsun
he issues arising out of Per Kristian
Olsens punctilious dissection of Knut
Hamsun (11 April) will have occurred to most
people keen on great artists with skeletons
in their closets. The second-best bed left to
Mrs Shakespeare in her husbands will may
not, as Orwell once put it, necessarily
invalidate Hamlet, but what about the dis-
tinguished philosopher who endorses
genocide, the eminent librettist who collab-
orates with his countrys enemies or, to use
the far from hypothetical subject of Olsens
enquiry, the world-famous novelist who writes
a sorrowing obituary of Hitler, having
previously sent Goebbels his Nobel medal as
a token of esteem?
Until at least the mid-1930s, Hamsun
(1859-1952) looked a sure-fire candidate for
posteritys smile. Hemingway declared that
the author of Hunger (1890) had taught him
to write; Henry Miller called him the Dickens
of my generation; there were approving
notices from everyone from Herman Hesse
to H.G. Wells, and a tide of media interest
that, here in out-of-the-way Scandinavia,
catapulted the Hamsun clan into a life of well-
nigh Kennedyesque celebrity. Then came
Naziism, the war, occupation, a series of
inflammatory letters to Norwegian newspa-
pers, and eventually reparation. The
standard post-war domestic riposte to
Hamsuns fascism, it turns out, was for former
admirers to hurl copies of his books over the
garden wall.
The link between reactionary political opin-
ions and art is never as clear-cut as it sounds.
There have, after all, been plenty of right-
wing modernists T.S. Eliot, say, or Anthony
Powell among home-grown writers and the
books by which Hamsun made his name in
the 1890s were ferociously avant-garde. He
disliked realism, thought artists should con-
centrate on the complexities of the human
mind, criticised Ibsen to his face and, his biog-
rapher Robert Ferguson told the programme,
was introducing stream-of-consciousness
techniques into his fiction a quarter-of-a-
century before Joyce.
The private life, alas, seems as self-willed
as the politics: an impoverished, autodidacts
childhood, a second marriage to a woman
first met with the salutation, What a beautiful
young lady you are, and a working routine
in which interruption was kept resolutely at
bay. A grandson, taken to the Norwegian state
library and confronted with the stormy letter
Hamsun filed to the press when it was revealed
that Rudolf Hess had flown to England, could
only murmur that he did not understand it.
What was there, in the end, to understand?
Ferguson made the unexceptionable point
that, just as a plumber is judged by his ability
to put in a sink, so a writer is judged by the
words he arranges on the page. Yet no critic
in history has ever quite managed to convince
the public that the words on the page enjoy
a hermetically sealed existence, altogether
cut off from that elemental human curiosity
about who wrote them. Ezra Pounds repu-
tation never recovered from the stink
surrounding his anti-Semitic broadcasts on
Rome radio. On this evidence, neither will
D.J. Taylor
20 April 2013
The Low Road: energetic and nuanced
Closing the circle
The Low Road
Molly Sweeney
nevitably, the first and last productions
that artistic directors stage have a symbolic
power, with the opener taken as a statement
of how they plan to run the place and the
closer as a clue to their future intentions.
Dominic Cooke, who left the Royal Court in
London last week after an impressive seven-
year tenure, has neatly closed the circle with
a new play by Bruce Norris, an American
dramatist whom his regime has championed
from the start, through earlier productions
of The Pain and the Itch and Clybourne Park.
It is fitting too that the new Norris piece, The
Low Road, tackles directly the histories of
capitalism and taxation, which have recently
resulted in the cultural funding crisis with
which Cooke and other theatre bosses have
had to cope.
The Low Roadis also pointedly unlike any-
thing Cooke has previously done at the Court,
being a three-hour historical costume drama,
set largely in the late eighteenth century with
only a brief contemporary interlude. My cyn-
ical journalistic assumption was that Cooke
was demonstrating his ability to direct the
sort of epic public play that is required in the
Olivier auditorium of the National Theatre,
where the announcement of Sir Nicholas
Hytners departure neatly coincided with
Cookes availability. However, the latter
insisted, during our interview on BBC Radio
4s Front Row, that he is organisationally
exhausted after the Court and will not be
seeking the NT job this time round.
So The Low Road must be taken simply as
a summation of the incumbency that it con-
cludes. And it continues the strengths of
Cookes regime. The multi-location staging
(set design Tom Pye) inventively suggests a
far bigger budget than there can actually have
been and high-calibre actors give energetic
and nuanced performances: especially Bill
Paterson as Adam Smith, the great Scottish
economist who narrates the Henry Fielding-
esque tale of Jim Trumpett (Johnny Flynn),
a young lad who goes in search of his fortune
in colonial America. There is also versatile
work from Elizabeth Berrington, who vividly
plays roles including a Massachusetts Puri-
tan and, in the modern scene, the harassed
chairwoman of an international conference
of corporate bosses. The time-jump cleverly
depicts the consequences of the rise of greed
and anti-government sentiments that the
historical sequences chart.
Overall, though, the play is far inferior to
Norris earlier Court plays. The employment
of a lengthy on-stage narration can be a sign
of structural problems and Patersons Smith
often seems here to be yoking together a set
of sketches that vary hugely in relevance and
interest. But Cooke directs with his usual
panache and attention to textual nuance. He
will be a tough act to follow at the Court (where
Vicky Featherstone takes over) but will be
worth following wherever his career takes
him next.
At one of Londons newer studio theatres
the Print Room in Notting Hill I was
pleased to see a Brian Friel play that I had
only previously read. Molly Sweeney was pre-
miered in 1994 but suffered then and since
from its formal similarity to Friels celebrated
Faith Healer, from which it borrows the device
of interlocking the monologues of three par-
ticipants in a situation.
With greater distance, this constructional
overlap feels no more relevant than, say, that
between two four-act plays about different
subjects. In Molly Sweeney, the device of three
people describing what they saw and felt is
given an extra dimension by the subtraction
of a sense: Molly (Dorothy Duffy) was born
blind but is restored to sight by an apparently
miraculous operation performed by Mr Rice
(Stuart Graham), a drunken and cuckolded
Dublin surgeon. The memories of patient and
physician are mediated by those of Frank
(Ruairi Conaghan), Mollys husband.
Monologues risk being static on stage but
director Abigail Graham introduces well-
judged moves and Friels selection of telling
detail is typically adept in a piece that alludes
to classic representations of blindness (the
seer Tiresias, Lears Gloucester) while bringing
new insights to the themes of sense and
observation. Mark Lawson
Fragile souls
The Prisoners
he prospect of a night in the cells is terri-
fying to most people. But there are those,
especially some inmates of womens prisons,
for whom jail offers structure, security and
even a kind of rough-and-ready affection,
things they have lacked in their disordered lives.
The Prisoners (15 April) looked at three
young women released from Holloway and
struggling to stay out. Im not going to lie,
said Jade, a prolific offender with six burglary
charges. I do love prison, and I do miss it.
Jade is 18, though she behaves with the
emotional incontinence of a toddler. Her
mother has spent a lot of time in prison and
Jade has spent most of her life in institutions.
In Holloway, we learned, she makes ligatures
to tie around the neck. The staff, firm but
patient, knew she was doing it, but werent
allowed to search her. They had to wait until
she was on the ground, gasping for air, at
which point it became an emergency and they
were able to intervene. In the four months
we followed Jade, she was in and out of
Holloway three times. When she wasnt there,
she sat in her council flat with her dog, turned
up to meet her probation officer with half a
bottle of vodka inside her, and sent a sad letter
to her favourite prison officer, Miss Kelly. I
miss you and love you loads, it said.
Another who loved prison was Crystal, 23,
jailed for drug offences, a heavy drinker and,
for good measure, a manic depressive. The
best times Ive had have been in prison, she
told us. Inside, she said, she had loads of
decent friends. Outside theyve been more
like associates. During her last spell in
Holloway, she had formed a romantic attach-
ment to another inmate, Toni. Now her plan
was to return to Southend, where all her trou-
bles began, and try to stay clean while waiting
for Toni to be released.
Crystal relapsed, then signed up for rehab,
250 miles away. Before she went, she showed
us her little collection of certificates from
prison courses: literacy, numeracy, crack
awareness. Holloway had taught her to read
and write. She particularly liked reading her
Valentine card from Toni. But then it all went
wrong. She dropped out of rehab, then took
an overdose, at which point Toni disappeared.
The programme ended with Crystal in another
kind of incarceration: sectioned under the
Mental Health Act. On the whole, she pre-
ferred Holloway.
Meanwhile, Emma, 23, was rather different.
Serving her third sentence for shoplifting
when we met her, she had led a stable and
privileged life, with a private education, loving
parents and violin lessons to grade 7. Then
her father had died, and the music had
stopped. She went to a sixth-form college,
discovered drugs, and was soon thieving to
support her habit. Released from Holloway,
she was collected by her mum, but preferred
more dangerous company. My other half is
on the streets, she explained. Weve been
together for six years and I have a lot of feelings
for him. Soon she was back to using drugs
every day and shoplifting. Drugs, she said,
are like when you are on a diet and you see
a piece of chocolate cake: You have a little
bit and you end up eating the whole cake.
And then she made herself scarce.
This was an excellent documentary, directed
with a sympathetic and patient touch by Louise
Malkinson. It was difficult, though, to watch
it without a sinking feeling. John Morrish
20 April 2013
Elite group chosen to help Pope govern
Robert Mickens
In Rome
POPE FRANCIShas called the Second Vatican
Council a beautiful work of the Holy Spirit
from which only the foolish and those lacking
belief would want to retreat.
He made his comments days after taking
a decisive step to implement a key teaching
of Vatican II episcopal collegiality by select-
ing eight cardinal-advisers from around the
world to help him govern the Universal
Church and reform its much-criticised central
bureaucracy, the Roman Curia.
After 50 years, have we done everything
the Spirit told us in the council? he asked
during a brief homily at Mass on Tuesday
morning. No. We celebrate this anniversary
by practically erecting a monument to the
council, but we are more concerned that it
doesnt cause us any bother. We dont want
to change, he told a small group of Vatican
employees inside the chapel at his Santa Marta
But theres even more there are those
who want to go back, he said. This is called
being stiff-necked; this is called wanting to
tame the Holy Spirit; this is called becoming
fools and slow of heart, he said in his
unscripted remarks, which were part of a
reflection on the temptation to resist the often
unsettling promptings of the Holy Spirit.
It was the first time in a little over a month
since he was elected Bishop of Rome that
Pope Francis had spoken specifically about
Vatican II. Only two other times has he
even quoted any of the conciliar documents.
The Vatican said the Popes decision to form
the elite papal group of eight came from
suggestions that cardinals had made in meet-
ings before the conclave. Pope Francis named
fellow Latin American, Cardinal Oscar
Rodrguez Maradiaga of Honduras, to co -
ordinate the group.
Although its first joint meeting is not sched-
uled to take place until 1-3 October, the Vatican
said the Pope had already begun his contacts
with individual members of the group.
The new cardinal-advisers include a rep-
resentative from each of the six continents,
as well as the governor of Vatican City State,
Cardinal Giuseppe Bertello, who is the lone
Italian cardinal. Pope Francis also chose an
Italian bishop Marcello Semeraro of the
Diocese of Albano to be the groups secretary.
The other advisers include Cardinals Reinhard
Marx, Archbishop of Munich (Europe);
Francisco Javier Errzuriz Ossa, Archbishop
Emeritus of Santiago de Chile (South
America); Sen Patrick OMalley, OFM Cap.,
Archbishop of Boston (North America);
Laurent Monsengwo Pasinya, Archbishop of
Kinshasa (Africa); Oswald Gracias,
Archbishop of Bombay (Asia); and George
Pell, Archbishop of Sydney (Oceania).
Fr Federico Lombardi SJ, head of the Holy
See press office, stressed that the group of
eight papal advisers could not properly be
calleda committee, commission or a coun-
cil. He said it was a group with rather open
designation that allows the Pope to seek
advice from authoritative members of the
episcopacy, and more specifically even from
the College of Cardinals, at the universal level.
Fr Lombardi underlined that this new group
in no way represented a diminishment of the
function of the Roman Curia. He said the
Curia still preserves all of its fundamental
functions of closely assisting the Pope in his
daily governance of the Universal Church
and the heads of the Curia offices remained
his primary collaborators. Cardinal
Rodrguez told Italian media that among the
items the group of eight would advise the
Pope on would certainly be all the issues
regarding the Institute for the Works of
Religion, commonly called the Vatican Bank.
I believe the Pope is looking to the future
with great faith, courage and decisiveness,
the Honduran cardinal said.
Cardinal Walter Kasper, the former head
of the Pontifical Council for Promoting
Christian Unity, praised Francis prophetic
interpretation of the council and said he had
launched a new phase of its reception.
Speaking on 12 April at a conference on
Vatican II in northern Italy, he said the Pope
had changed the agenda and put the issues
of the southern hemisphere especially the
challenge of poverty at the forefront of the
Churchs attention. Pope Francis, with his
option for a poor Church for the poor, recalled
that to mind, the cardinal said. In Chile, Juan
Carlos Cruz, a victim of a priest found guilty
of abuse by a Vatican investigation in 2011,
said it was shameful that Cardinal Errzuriz,
who is accused of covering up the abuse,
should have been included in the group.
Bishops bar priests from adopting Missal translation
XVI one year ago informing the
German-speaking bishops that
their new translation of the
Missal would use the phrase
for many, the Austrian
bishops have stipulated that the
only permitted translation of
the Latin words pro multis in
the Eucharistic Prayer is for
all, writes Christa
The Austrian bishops
conference issued the
clarification in the 14 April
edition of its official gazette.
A German translation of the
Missal is being prepared. Last
April, Pope Benedict XVI wrote
to the German bishops to inform
them of his personal decision to
have the words fr viele (for
many) rather than fr alle (for
all) to translate pro multis in
the new text. The Austrian
bishops are keen that no priest
starts saying for many while
the text is still being worked on.
The Austrian bishops said that
with their clarification, they
were expressly drawing
attention to the fact that
Benedict XVIs decision is only
valid for the new translation of
the Mass and [they] would like
to underline that the
corresponding church
procedure on this subject has
not yet been concluded. It is for
this reason that the Missal of
1975 remains binding.
In his letter a year ago, the
German Pope said he had
written to avoid a split in the
Church, after the president of
the German bishops
conference, Archbishop Robert
Zollitsch had told him the
bishops in the German-speaking
world were still divided on the
translation of pro multis. Pope
Benedict acknowledged that the
change would be a huge
challenge for clergy and laity
and asked the bishops to work
out a thorough exegesis that
would make the new translation
understandable to the faithful.
In October, Cardinal Karl
Lehmann of Mainz said Rome
had pettily censored the
German translation of the
Missal, which was a breach of
the right to liturgy. And
Archbishop Alois Kothgasser of
Salzburg, who is responsible for
liturgical matters in the Austrian
bishops conference, told a
meeting of deans at Brixen on
the Italian border that Pope
Benedicts decision to revert to
for many was not an official
decision and that he would
prefer to go on using for all.
Some 3.5 million copies of the
new German translation are due
to be printed and come into use
in all German-speaking
countries on the first Sunday of
Advent this year.
Have your say on the weeks
big issues onThe Tablet blog at
Grieving Bostonians urged
to combat evil with good
Ellie Clayton andMichael Sean Winters
IN THE WAKE of the fatal bombings at the
Boston Marathon on Monday, the Archbishop
of Boston has expressed his deep sorrow
over the tragic loss of life.
The two explosions that went off near the
finishing line killed three people, including
an eight-year-old boy, and injured more than
170 others, including 17 critically.
In a statement released hours after the
blasts, Cardinal Sen OMalley said: Our
prayers and concern are with so many who
experienced the trauma of these acts, and
praised the work of those who had helped in
the aftermath of the attack.
He added: We stand in solidarity with our
ecumenical and interfaith colleagues in the
commitment to witness the greater power of
good in our society and to work together for
healing. Pope Francis sent a telegram to the
cardinal in which he urged all Bostonians
not to be overcome by evil, but to combat
evil with good.
On Thursday, President Barack Obama was
due to attend an interfaith service at the citys
Catholic Cathedral of the Holy Cross.
Cardinal Timothy Dolan of New York,
president of the US bishops conference, noted
on Tuesday in a statement that the tragedy
occurred on Patriots Day. He urged Catholics
to pray for the dead, the injured and the emer-
gency services, and added that the growing
culture of violence calls for both wise secur -
ity measures by government officials and an
examination by all of us to see what we can
personally do to enhance peace and respect
for one another in our world.
Among the dead was Martin Richard, aged
eight, from the Boston suburb of Dorchester.
The explosion severely injured his mother, and
his six-year-old sister lost a leg. The boys school,
Pope John Paul II Catholic Academy, said it
was offering its every prayer for the Richard
family. The family worshipped at St Anns
Church in Dorchester and Martin had made
his first Holy Communion there last year.
Martins father, Bill, is a community leader.
Turkson says
self-interest is
undermining UN
20 April 2013
Sunday 21 April 2013
Mass Times:
Vigil: Saturday 6pm
Sunday: 8am, 9.30am (Family Mass),
11am (sung Latin),
Jackson, Malcolm, Mendelssohn, Howells
12.30pm, 4.15pm, 6.15pm
CARDINAL Peter Turkson, the head of the
Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace,
said that the aims of the United Nations
have been undermined by nations pursuing
their own interests, writes Michael Sean
Winters. He also implicitly criticised the
UN for including access to abortion as part
of its efforts to reduce poverty.
The cardinal was giving the keynote
address at a conference commemorating the
fiftieth anniversary of Pope John XXIIIs
encyclical Pacem in Terris, at the Catholic
University of America. He said peace is
frustrated because the building block of
nation has persistently been a stumbling
block a nation will pursue its interests
above those of any set of nations.
Cardinal Turkson said that when, in
2010, he led the Holy See delegation to the
UN to discuss Millennium Development
Goals to halve global poverty by 2015,
some of the methods of the anti-poverty
campaign tended to target the poor in ways
that suggest that the solution to global
poverty is to eliminate the poor. The UN
Human Rights Council has released a report
equating restrictions and bans on abortion
with torture and ill-treatment of women.
(To read the cardinals speech, visit
The Vaticans doctrinal chief
says Pope Francis has given his
ofce a go-ahead to continue
the crackdown it launched last
year against a major association
of nuns in the United States,
writes Robert Mickens.
Archbishop Gerhard Mller,
prefect of the Congregation for
the Doctrine of the Faith (CDF),
made the announcement on
Monday after meeting the top
three ofcials of the association,
the Leadership Conference of
Women Religious (LCWR) its
president, Sr Florence Deacon,
its vice president Carol Zinn and
executive director Sr Janet
In a CDF communiqu, the
German prefect said Pope
Francis had reafrmed the
fndings issued last April in a
harshly worded assessment of
the LCWR. That evaluation,
written by Bishop Leonard Blair
of Toledo (Ohio), accused the
conference of failing to promote
church teaching on life issues,
the family and human sexuality.
The conversation was open
and frank,the LCWR said in a
CARDINAL Andr Vingt-Trois, Archbishop
of Paris, has warned that legalising gay
marriage and adoption would deny the
fundamental human trait of sexual difference
and could lead to violence by people frustrated
by the official rejection of part of their identity,
writes Tom Heneghan.
Addressing the spring session of the French
bishops conference, he said the reform was
a sign that France had lost its capacity to inte-
grate differences peacefully among its people.
This is the way a violent society develops,
he said. Society has lost its capacity of inte-
gration and especially its ability to blend dif-
ferences in a common project.
Under pressure from the reforms oppo-
nents, the Government in Paris has speeded
up the legislative process so the National
Assembly can give final approval to the law
on 23 April, weeks earlier than intended.
Debate has been limited to 25 hours, to avoid
giving the opposition and protest groups more
time to campaign against the measure.
Cardinal Vingt-Trois said the Governments
decision to rush the law through showed it
had been embarrassed by the public debate.
Gay-marriage law risks violence
20 April 2013
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020 7636 4718
Christa Pongratz-Lippitt
THE NEW PENTECOSTAL movements that
are burgeoning across the world require a
new kind of recognition, according to a senior
church leader. The President of the Pontifical
Council for Promoting Christian Unity,
Cardinal Kurt Koch, said that these move-
ments have grown to such an extent that they
now constitute a fourth form of Christianity
after the Catholic, Protestant and
Orthodox/Old Oriental Churches, especially
in the southern hemisphere.
Cardinal Koch was addressing a conference
in Rome entitled Evangelicals Pentecostals
Charismatics New Religious Movements
as Challenge for the Catholic Church, hosted
by the German bishops conference.
The cardinal said that the Evangelical,
Charismatic and Pentecostal movements,
together with the many indigenous Free
Churches, were now the second-largest
Christian community in the world after the
Catholic Church. He added that these new
movements were growing so fast that it was
necessary to speak of the Pentecostalisation
of Christianity. Their rapid expansion had
radically changed the geography of
Christianity worldwide.
Cardinal Koch said that the success of the
new movements obliged the Catholic Church
to ask itself, What are we doing wrong and
why are the faithful deserting us?, though
he added that there were no simple answers.
He warned against seeing these new forms
of Christianity solely as a threat to the Church.
It was obvious that there was a great hunger
and thirst for spiritual experiences in these
movements which should make the historic
Christian Churches question the churchify-
ing (Verkirchlichung) of the faith and of
Christian life, Cardinal Koch said.
The new movements were characterised by
the immediate proximity of the faithful to one
another and to the community. Archbishop
Ludwig Schick of Bamberg, who as head of
the Commission for the World Church in the
German bishops conference was the confer-
ence organiser, underlined how crucial it was
to intensify dialogue with these movements.
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Growth of new movements
prompts soul-searching
Elections plea to Mugabes neighbours
THE BISHOPS of Southern Africa are visiting
the heads of nations in the region to ask them
to use their influence to help ensure that
presidential and parliamentary elections in
Zimbabwe later this year are free of violence
and intimidation, writes Ellen Teague.
A delegation of the Inter-Regional Meeting
of Bishops of Southern Africa (Imbisa) last
week met Armando Guebuza, President of
Mozambique and president of the Southern
Africa Development Community (SADC).
The delegation representing Angola,
Botswana, Lesotho, Mozambique, Namibia,
So Tom e Prncipe, South Africa, Swaziland
and Zimbabwe told President Guebuza:
We have decided to make this request to you
and other SADC leaders to avoid the rude
awakening we had in 2008 when unprece-
dented violence was unleashed on the nation
in the June presidential run-off elections.
The bishops want SADC to push for all
Zimbabwean parties to sign up to the
Zimbabwe Political Parties Code of Conduct.
Botswanan Bishop Frank Atese Nubuasah,
who heads Imbisa, told The Tablet that Imbisa
delegations will be visiting the heads of all
the SADC. He said they had a good and
friendly meeting with President Robert
Mugabe in Harare last month.
In elections in March 2008 neither Mr
Mugabe nor his main rival, Morgan
Tsvangirai, won an outright majority. A run-
off was scheduled for June, but after a wave
of violent attacks on opposition supporters
Mr Tsvangirai pulled out of the second round
and accepted the post of Prime Minister.
SUDAN: A senior Sudanese
Catholic priest and two foreign
Brothers on Friday became the
latest of around 100 Christian
leaders to be expelled from
Sudan in the last few months,
writes Fredrick Nzwili.
Fr Santino Morokomomo
Maurino, general secretary of
the Sudan Catholic Bishops
Conference, was forced to
leave on 12 April, the same day
that Sudanese President Omar
Al-Bashir visited South Sudan
for the frst time since the
region became an
independent state in 2011.
The priests expulsion has
called into question the
announcement by Mr Bashir
and his South Sudanese
counterpart, Salva Kiir, that
relations between the two
countries are to be normalised.
Mr Bashir says he wants Sudan
to be a purely Muslim nation.
Also expelled with Fr
Maurino were two Religious:
French Br Michel Fleury and an
Egyptian known only as Br
Hossam. Both were working at
the Catholic Language
Institute, Khartoum.
20 April 2013
month into his pontificate, Pope
Francis has been drawing unusually
large crowds at all his public
appearances. At his midday blessing this
past Sunday there were nearly as many
people as turned up in and around St
Peters Square for the last Angelus of
Benedict XVI. And this past Wednesday
more than 80,000 people some said as
many as 100,000 came to listen to Papa
Bergoglio give his weekly catechesis at the
general audience. And at each gathering the
excitement is palpable. No doubt about it,
theres a lot of enthusiasm for the new Pope,
whose relaxed and spontaneous manner is
strikingly different from that of his more
reserved and professorial predecessor.
But the enthusiasm waned a bit in some
quarters this week after the head of the
Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith
(CDF) said the Latin American Pope had
told him to proceed with a controversial
reform of the Leadership Conference of
Women Religious in the United States. As
one leading woman Religious suggested
publicly, its hard to know how much he has
really studied the CDF-sponsored
assessment of the situation. Usually, the
Holy See press office issues statements on
the Popes meetings and positions, but this
was the second time since Francis became
Pope that the CDF issued a communiqu
after a meeting between Pope Francis and
the CDF prefect. Perhaps Francis instructed
Archbishop Gerhard Mller to do so. If so,
the difference between him and Benedict
may be more a matter of style than of
That would be good news for proponents
of the Tridentine Mass and other
conservative Catholics. They werent very
happy, either, this week after the Pope said
people who wanted to turn back Vatican
Council II were stiff-necked and fools.
ope Francis made his comments
about the council during one of the
morning Masses hes been
celebrating each weekday in the chapel of
the Santa Marta residence where he lives.
As noted last week, he invites various
groups of Vatican employees to join him for
these liturgies. And he always offers some
brief, spontaneous reflections on the days
readings. At first, most people were not
giving much weight to these unscripted
homilettes, but more and more they are
starting to sit up and listen. And now they
have begun looking for the transcribed texts
of the daily exhortations. The only problem
is, they dont exist; at least, not in their
entirety. Vatican Radio and LOsservatore
Romano publish written summaries, but
they are often slightly different. And there
are also minor discrepancies among
the various language translations, too.
Vatican Radio tapes Papa Francescos
reflections, but does not make the audio
available to the public. Evidently, someone
is cleaning up his remarks, because hes
not quite as fluent in Italian as in his native
Spanish. The Italiani love his Latin
American accent, but they jokingly say that
when he speaks in their language its really
Itaniolo a combination of Italiano and
Spagnolo (Spanish). Perhaps the Argentine
Pope also speaks Spanglish. Its hard to
tell, because hes only ever uttered but a few
public words in English. He really hasnt
spoken in public much in his native tongue,
either; that is, until this past Wednesday.
For the first time ever, he actually read the
Spanish summary of his weekly catechesis,
rather than leaving the task to an aide as he
does with all the other languages.
No one seemed offended that hes decided
to play favourites or use common sense.
taly is soon to have a new president to
replace 87-year-old Giorgio Napolitano
whose seven-year term has come to an
end. Just over 1,000 delegates from the two
houses of parliament and regional
assemblies were to begin the voting process
on Thursday. Like a papal conclave, a
two-thirds majority is required for election
but only during the first three rounds of
voting. After that, only a simple majority is
needed. There is usually one voting session
in the morning and one in the afternoon.
Normally, a large number of empty
ballots are cast in those first three rounds,
as parties and factions make deals and then
push for quick election in round four. That
might not happen this time. No single party
or coalition had enough votes to form a
government after political elections two
months ago and there are fears that this
could also lead to a long-drawn-out process
to choose the president, a revered figure
who represents national unity and
guarantees compliance with the constitution.
Many people are wondering if the new
head of state will be a Catholic. Mr
Napolitano, a long-time leader in Italys
former Communist Party, was not. But he
had a warm relationship with Benedict
XVI. The hierarchs may not be so lucky
with his successor, especially if its two-time
former Prime Minister Romano Prodi, who
has emerged as a strong candidate. Even
though a fervent, church-going Catholic,
Mr Prodi refused to bow to the bishops
demands on a number of pieces of legislation
while in office. He said a grown-up
Catholic should follow his conscience on
political issues.
Its commonly held that they, in turn,
helped topple his government in 2008.
Robert Mickens
Letter from Rome
Saudi crackdown on foreigners
The Church in the southern Indian state
of Kerala has urged the state and federal
Governments to negotiate with the Saudi
Arabian Government and provide financial
assistance for migrant workers and their
families forced to leave the oil-rich Gulf
country in its clampdown on unauthorised
foreign labourers. Any of the almost 2.5
million (mainly low-paid) Indians, includ-
ing 500,000 from Kerala, who have
changed jobs illegally in Saudi or do not
have a valid work permit, will face depor-
tation. Last week officials at the Philippines
consulate in Jeddah set up tents for some
675 undocumented Filipino workers who
had fled there seeking help.
Syria reduced to battlefeld
Two years of civil conflict have turned the
whole of Syria into a battlefield, Melkite
Greek Catholic Patriarch Gregory III
Laham warned this week. In a message
sent from Damascus to the Catholic charity
Aid to the Church in Need, the patriarch
added that up to 400,000 Syrian
Christians possibly more than 25 per
cent of the total have been displaced
internally or have fled abroad.
Olive branch for Kirchner
The newly appointed Archbishop of
Buenos Aires, Mario Aurelio Poli, has pub-
licly invited President Cristina Fernndez
Kirchner to attend the traditional annual
Te Deum service at the citys cathedral in
May. She last attended the service with
her husband Nestor, the former president,
in 2005, when in his homily then-Cardinal
Jorge Mario Bergoglio, now Pope Francis,
questioned the exhibitionism and strident
rhetoric of those governing the country.
Ex-Benedictine head charged
The former head teacher of a prestigious
boys boarding school at the Benedictine
Kremsmnster Abbey in Upper Austria
has been charged with offences relating
to the abuse of 15 pupils between 1973
and 1993. The allegations of abuse by
August Mandorfer, 79, formerly Fr Alfons
OSB until he was laicised by the Vatican,
surfaced in 2010.
Mass for Pope Emeritus birthday
Pope Francis marked the eighty-sixth
birthday of Benedict XVI on Tuesday by
offering morning Mass for his retired pre -
decessor and telephoning him at his
temporary residence at Castel Gandolfo.
The Vatican recently denied that the
former Pope was suffering from any ill
health other than the effects of old age.
He is to move into his newly refurbished
residence in the Vatican next month.
For daily news updates visit
20 April 2013
Bishops first
meeting with
Pope Francis
Abigail Frymann andChristopher Lamb
THE BISHOPSof England and Wales had their
first private meeting with Pope Francis on
Along with Cardinal Cormac Murphy-
OConnor, the bishops spent last week on
retreat in the Villa Palazzola, the summer villa
of the Venerable English College, 18 miles
south of Rome. They travelled to the Vatican
on Wednesday to attend the general audience
and afterwards were granted an impromptu
private meeting with Pope Francis in the Paul
VI hall.
During the meeting, Cardinal Murphy-
OConnor told the Pope that his election and
the first weeks of his papacy had brought fresh
hope to the Church. Each bishop then indi-
vidually greeted the Pope.
Early on Wednesday morning the bishops
celebrated Mass in St Peters Basilica where
they offered prayers for Baroness Thatcher
(see page 29). They then went to the Domus
Sanctae Marthae, the guest house where Pope
Francis has been living since before his election
last month. The bishops had hoped to meet
the Pope over breakfast but unfortunately he
had left by the time they arrived. At the
Wednesday general audience, Pope Francis
offered a cordial greeting to the Bishops
Conference of England and Wales and assured
them of his prayers for their episcopal
On Sunday, the bishops celebrated Mass
with Cardinal Marc Ouellet, prefect of the
Congregation for Bishops, in the Palazzola
chapel. Seminarians from the English College
in Rome attended and met their respective
bishops at the Mass.
Cardinal Ouellet will be taking a leading
role in the appointment of a number of new
bishops in England and Wales. Six dioceses
are in need of new bishops: East Anglia,
Brentwood, Hallam, Liverpool, Leeds and
The bishops retreat
has been led by Fr
Paul Murray, a
Dominican priest
from the Angelicum
the Pontifical
University of St
Thomas Aquinas in
Rome. The Irish priest teaches spiritual the-
ology and is the author of numerous books. A
spokesman for the bishops said: Cardinal
Ouellet presided and preached at a con -
celebrated Mass with the bishops of England
and Wales at Palazzola. Seminarians currently
studying at the English College, and staff, were
also present.
The bishops usually meet twice a year at
Hinsley Hall, Leeds: once in November and
again after Easter. Every few years they travel
overseas for a retreat. In 2006 they met at the
English College in the Spanish city of Valladolid
but plans for the subsequent retreat abroad
were delayed because of the 2010 papal visit
to Britain. Today, following the end of the
retreat, the bishops are meeting to discuss
church business.
More choose religious life
THE NUMBERof people
entering religious life in England
and Wales has risen to its
highest level in almost 15 years,
writes Liz Dodd.
The National Office for
Vocation, part of the Bishops
Conference of England and
Wales, announced this week that
53 men and women opted to
become nuns, monks and friars
in 2012, an increase of almost 20
in one year. The figure is the
highest since 1996, when there
were 58 entrants.
Twenty-three of those joining
religious communities in 2012
were women, the highest in
almost 20 years.
But compared to 30 years ago,
the figures show how vocations
have been in decline. In 1982,
217 people entered religious life
including 60 women.
The increase in 2012
continues an upward trend since
2004, when vocations were at
their lowest: in that year, only 19
people entered religious life.
The number of ordinations to
the diocesan priesthood this year
are also set to be the highest in
over a decade, with 41 men due
to be ordained.
Fr Christopher Jamison, the
director of the national vocation
office, said: I think the rise in
numbers reflects a change in
approach by many religious
communities: rather than trying
to recruit them, they are now
reaching out to young people
and helping them to discover
their vocation.
But he added that the increase
would not continue forever.
Chale leaves after five months
THE DIRECTORof one of Britains
leading Catholic development
charities is leaving her role fve
months after she was appointed,
writes Christopher Lamb.
Patricia Chale started as director
of the Scottish Catholic
International Aid Fund (Sciaf), the
ofcial aid agency of the Church in
Scotland, on 1 December 2012.
But in a statement this week the
charity said: Patricia Chales
employment with Sciaf will end on
2 May. She is presently on leave.
The board will consider appointing
a new chief ofcer in due course.
For the time being Sciaf will be led
by the members of the senior
management team working
Before Ms Chales appointment,
Sciaf had been without a leader for
18 months following the departure
of Paul Chitnis after 15 years.
Sciaf is overseen by a board of
trustees all of them Scottish
bishops whose president is Peter
Moran, the Bishop Emeritus of
Aberdeen. The charity does not
have a chairman of trustees
following the resignation of
Cardinal Keith OBrien in February.
Before taking up her Sciaf role,
Ms Chale had been executive
director of Caritas Westminster, a
newly created social action arm of
the Archdiocese of Westminster,
for seven months.
Sciaf appointed Ms Chale with
the assistance of recruitment
consultants, Munro Consulting.
The charity, which was founded
in 1965 and is based in Glasgow,
has a staf of 34, a budget of
5.3 million and works in 15 of the
worlds poorest countries.
Pope Francis,
centre, flanked left
to right by
Vincent Nichols,
Bishop Kieran
Conry, Archbishop
Arthur Roche and
Cardinal Cormac
Have your say on the weeks
big issues onThe Tablet blog at
IRELAND: Pay cuts imposed on staf by the
Archdiocese ofDublin in a bid to ease its
fnancial difculties have been found to be
in breach of Irish employment law,
writes Sarah Mac Donald.
The Employment Rights Commissioner ruled
in favour of three members of the Archdiocese of
Dublins central administration staf who refused
to sign up to the cuts, the only ones to do so out
of a total of around 55 staf.
Adjudicating on the three womens appeal for
a reimbursement of the deductions made since
the cuts came into force last year, the
commissioner, John Walsh, deemed them illegal
under the Payment of Wages Act. He said they
had not consented in writing to the deductions.
However, the commissioner also ruled that
the archdiocese did not have to compensate the
three in view of the poor state of its fnances.
The three are expected to take their case
to the Employment Appeals Tribunal. The pay
cuts totalled between 5 per cent and 5.8 per cent
on their salaries which were under
25,000 (21,527).
The Archdiocese ofDublinhas been trying to
plug a 500,000 (430,543) defcit in its wage bill
through savings from pay cuts and
non-replacement of retiring staf. Pay cuts, the sale
of assets, an increase in bequests and fund-raising
have seen the overall fnances of the archdiocese
improve over 12 months from 2011 to 2012,
according to fgures released at the weekend.
Sam Adams
In St Pauls Cathedral
THE BISHOP of London said that Britain
owed a huge debt to the Methodism Margaret
Thatcher was brought up in, during her
funeral at St Pauls Cathedral, London.
Addressing a congregation of more than
2,000 guests, including the Queen, Prime
Minister David Cameron and almost the
entire British political establishment, Bishop
Richard Chartres praised Baroness Thatchers
perseverance in struggle and courage as
characteristic of her time as Prime Minister.
He quoted her as saying that her Methodist
upbringing taught her to never take the easy
way out.
Bishop Chartres said Methodism had
helped challenge the political and economic
status quo during the nineteenth century.
He gave the example of the Tolpuddle Martyrs
a group of agricultural workers believed to
be the founding fathers of trade unions who
he said were led not by proto-Marxists but
by Methodist lay preachers.
Bishop Chartres, who was a friend of Lady
Thatcher, spoke of the importance she placed
on the family, which he quoted her as saying
was at the heart of society and the very nurs-
ery of civic virtue.
He said her often-quoted comment that
there is no such thing as society had been
misunderstood, and she was referring to
some impersonal entity to which we are
tempted to surrender our independence.
However, the bishop said she believed that
interdependence was a crucial element in
happiness. The Archbishop Emeritus of
Liverpool Patrick Kelly represented the
bishops of England and Wales and led prayers
in the funeral service. The apostolic nuncio
to Great Britain, Archbishop Antonio Mennini,
was due to attend on behalf of the Holy See.
The Archbishop of Westminster, Vincent
Nichols, was in Rome this week (see page 28).
The First Minister of Scotland, Alex
Salmond, has said he is confident that the
Catholic Church in the country will recover
from its current difficulties. Speaking to The
Tablet following the funeral of Lady Thatcher,
Mr Salmond praised the Church for being at
the heart of the independence movement in
Scotland and that without the Catholic
Church there would be no Scotland.
20 April 2013
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Church unaware of abuse inquiry
The Church has said it is not aware of
any current police investigation into sex-
ual abuse in the Catholic Church, or into
an individual bishop. The ExaroNews
website reported that the Metropolitan
Police were investigating the Church and
said that a bishop had been drawn into
their inquries. Danny Sullivan, chairman
of the National Catholic Safeguarding
Commission, said police had told him
that they do not investigate institutions
but individuals. If the police come for-
ward with allegations against a bishop,
national procedures will be rigorously
applied and we will cooperate fully with
the police.
MPs urge action on abortion
MPs are calling on the Department of
Health to record the gender of aborted
foetuses in a move to stamp out illegal
sex-selection abortion. Conservative
backbencher Fiona Bruce and Labour MP
Jim Dobbin introduced a private bill in
Parliament on Tuesday.
Bishop visits Zimbabwe
The Bishop of Clifton has praised the vital-
ity of the Church in Africa following a
week-long visit to South Africa and
Zimbabwe. Bishop Declan Lang met with
the presidents of the Zimbabwean
Bishops Conference and the Southern
African Bishops Conference and made a
number of pastoral visits.
Downside appoints frst lay head
A leading Benedictine public school has
appointed its first lay headmaster.
Downside School, in Stratton-on-the-
Fosse, Somerset, has announced that Dr
James Whitehead will take over from Dom
Leo Maidlow Davis at Easter next year.
Dr Whitehead is the deputy headmaster
of Worth School, in West Sussex, also a
Benedictine school. Downside Abbey was
founded in Douai, France, in 1606.
Chartres pays tribute to
Thatchers Methodism
Sam Adams
CATHOLICS IN Britain are split over the ques-
tion of same-sex marriage, a new survey has
Despite the Churchs strong condemnation
of the Governments plan to introduce same-
sex marriage in England and Wales, a YouGov
poll found that 44 per cent of Catholics sup-
port the idea while 41 per cent oppose it.
However, when asked whether they think
same-sex marriage is right or wrong, 44 per
cent of Catholic respondents to the survey
which was commissioned to support this
weeks Westminster Faith Debate on the
issue said it is wrong, while 36 per cent said
it is right. This means a significant number
of Catholics think same-sex marriage should
be made legal, despite their personal belief
that it is wrong.
MPs voted overwhelmingly in favour of
permitting same-sex marriage in the House
of Commons in February in the form of the
Governments Marriage (Same Sex Couples)
Bill. The legislation has been examined by a
parliamentary committee and its next step
will be to go before the House of Commons
for a third reading.
The YouGov survey, which questioned
4,000 people, found that more than half, 52
per cent, of the population are in favour of
allowing same-sex couples to marry, compared
to 34 per cent who are against.
Catholic respondents to the poll were split
on the issue in the same proportions as
Anglicans, but were more permissive than
Methodists, Baptists and Muslims.
The young people surveyed were three times
more likely to be in favour of same-sex
marriage than those aged 60 and over, while
men (40 per cent) were far more likely to
oppose it than women (27 per cent).
The most common reason given by those
who say same-sex marriage should be allowed
is that people should be treated equally what-
ever their sexual orientation (77 per cent),
while the most common reason given by those
who say same-sex marriage is wrong said
marriage should be between a man and a
woman (79 per cent). The Westminster Faith
Debate on same-sex marriage was due to take
place on Thursday.
(See Linda Woodhead, pages 10-11.)
20 April 2013
THE ARCHBISHOPof Westminster has ques-
tioned the effectiveness of increasing
regulation in the City as part of attempts to
introduce more ethical business practices,
saying that rules alone become a lazy proxy
for morality, writes Abigail Frymann.
Of course, law and regulation matter, but
they are not sufficient, said Archbishop
Vincent Nichols. New rules usually deal with
the last problem, not the next one.
The archbishop was giving the keynote
address in the first of a three-part debate at
St Pauls Cathedral entitled The City and the
Common Good: what kind of City do we
want? organised by the St Pauls Institute.
He went on: A compliance mentality typ-
ically creates perverse incentives and
increasing bureaucracy. Rules become a lazy
proxy for morality: people think if its not
against some rule then its okay. Such a society
is inherently fragile.
Archbishop Nichols gave his talk before a
panel that comprised Tracey McDermott,
director of enforcement and financial crime
at the Financial Conduct Authority, human
rights lawyer Baroness (Helena) Kennedy
and Anglican Bishop Peter Selby. Ms
McDermott rejected the archbishops view,
saying that rules were crucial for society when
ethical behaviour was not followed.
Archbishop Nichols said what was needed
was good people bound by good purpose
centred on traditional virtues and that
employers should encourage the potential for
good in their staff rather than make employees
feel the need to leave their values at home.
Questioned by The Tablet about how the
City can retain its competitiveness while
espousing such values, Archbishop Nichols
said that such values would make a business
more competitive because staff would be moti-
vated not by salary but by a sense of purpose.
(The full text of the archbishops speech is
available at
Rightly or wrongly, Milan has become to
many the symbol of modern urban civili-
sationrich, clean, productive, full of
diversions and amenities, but soulless and
leaning to neurosis and despair. Whether
this attitude is due to Antonionis films, or
to the grimaces that Italians (even
Milanese) usually make when the city is
mentioned, or because it really is more
depressing than other modern cities, is
hard to tell. But the Church is making
an effort to break down the isolation caused
by the separate cell-like existences of people
living in the monolithic slabs of flats char-
acteristic of the town, which were so
relentlessly portrayed in La Notte. Under
Cardinal Montinis development plan, eight
central chapels have been built in the co-
operative blocks of flats in the town, and
architects are now beginning to include
chapels in their plans of buildings, with
the idea that the tenants will pay for the
maintenance of the chapel monthly,
together with their other expenses. Besides
their convenience and the fact that the
chapels might make a kind of parish out
of each block, practical considerations made
the plans almost inevitable, as there were
often 100 families in each new block, and
sometimes even 1,000, which added to the
already serious problem in Milan of a short-
age of churches.
The Tablet, 20 April 1963
The cardinals rising was greeted with
cheers. In the course of a brief address he
observed that nothing afforded him greater
satisfaction than to participate in the open-
ing of a new Catholic school They must
not relax their efforts in the work of pro-
viding Catholic schools under the charge
of Catholic teachers for Catholic children,
without exception . He prayed that every
success would attend the work of the fathers
of St Francis Xaviers, and he begged Gods
blessing on the new schools, which would
be the means of bringing up many gener-
ations of Catholic children in the knowledge
and love of their holy faith. The Archbishop
of Liverpool thanked the people of
Liverpool for the manner in which they
had rallied to the call of the Jesuit Fathers,
who had done such good work in Liverpool
for many years past in helping them to liq-
uidate the debt on the new school. Most
of the churches and schools belonging to
the Catholic body in England had been
built out of the pence of the poor, and he
was quite sure that the working-class
parishioners of St Francis Xaviers would
not be backward in raising the 8,000
which was still needed.
The Tablet, 19 April 1913
Nichols: regulation alone will not reform City
divided over
gay marriage
A Catholic private school in
Ealing has come joint frst in a
national review of school
safeguarding policies, writes
Ellie Clayton.
St Augustines Priory, an
all-girls school, was one of only
two schools to conform to the
10 criteria set out by
independent safeguarding
campaigner Jonathan West.
Sixty schools had been
randomly selected for the
study, which formed part of
research for a BBC radio
Head teacher Sarah Rafray,
who was appointed last year,
said that she has made
safeguarding a priority.
The school was linked to
allegations of sexual abuse at
Ealing Abbey and nearby St
Benedicts School. St
Benedicts revealed this month
that buildings named after
monks who were alleged to
have sexually abused children
have been renamed. The Soper
Pavilion, named after Fr
Laurence Soper, a former
abbot who was arrested in
2010 and has failed to return
to London to answer police
bail, has been renamed the
Centenary Pavilion.
20 April 2013
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More House School London
Starting salary not less than 70,000 pa
Applications are invited for the post of Head of More House School, London,
with efect from 1 September 2014 (or earlier by agreement), consequent
upon the retirement of Mr Robert Carlysle. The Governors are seeking a
candidate who can build upon the considerable achievements of Robert
Carlysle over the last seven years.
More House School is an independent girls secondary day school situated in
Knightsbridge, London, SW1. The School is a Roman Catholic foundation
established in 1953 but it is open to all pupils. The age range of pupils is
eleven to eighteen. The capacity of the School is 200.
More House has an excellent academic record and most sixth form leavers go
on to the Universities of their frst choice. In addition to the normal
academic curriculum, the School excels in music, art and drama.
Further particulars and application form may be requested from:
Mrs Julia Barnwell
PA to the Headmaster
More House School
22-24 Pont Street
Tel: 020 7235 2855
e-mail: of
Closing date for receipt of applications: Monday 20 May 2013
More House Trust Limited No.958054 (England) Registered Charity No.312737
Registered Of ce: 22 Pont Street, London SW1X 0AA
The Diocese of
Arundel & Brighton
Pastoral Team
Serving the communities of our Diocese
The Roman Catholic Diocese of Arundel & Brighton is seeking
to appoint a Pastoral Team Coordinator. This is an exciting
opportunity for someone experienced in all aspects of pastoral
work to lead and support a team of specialist advisers who
provide resources, events and training throughout the diocese.
The Coordinator will be based at the Christian Education Centre (DABCEC)
in Crawley, West Sussex. It is a full-time post with variable working hours
which will involve travel and some evening and weekend work.
Salary Scale 3 (from 35,447) dependent on relevant qualications / experience.
Closing date: Friday 10 May 2013
Date of Interviews: Tuesday 4 June 2013
For an information pack please contact:
Mgr Tony Barry, The Christian Education Centre, 4 Southgate Drive,
Crawley, West Sussex RH10 6RP
Tel: 01293 515666 or Email:
The Arundel & Brighton Trust is a Registered Charity no 252878
20 April 2013
Volume 267 No. 8994 ISSN: 0039 8837
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ITS ONLY a few short
miles from our back door
but the journey takes you
into the last century, and
At seven in the morning, there were few cars,
that indicator species of modern times, and
making good time on our bikes, we were soon
lost in a land of small but sudden hills,
hidden villages and tall woods beneath the
escarpment of the moors.
As though sketched by an artists hand, the
light mist was just lifting as we reached the
valley so that, freewheeling through the gate-
house, the broken arch of Byland Abbey
showed like a wolf s tooth. But we werent in
search of ruins: our way lay up the steep plunge
Glimpses of Eden
of Wass Bank to a living abbey. In a late spring
the sun comes even later to North Yorkshires
low but rugged hills, which rise and fall like
the backs of resting fallow does.
And on one of these hills, beyond the roads
last curve, you ll find the newly founded
Stanbrook Abbey. No need for stained glass
windows in the chapel here: a buzzard soar-
ing above woods under a blue-eyed sky
graced the window behind the altar. Lambs
provided the bells. Even the wind played its
music, from the austere plainchant in the roof,
to the polyphony of the spring sigh carrying
a brimstone butterfly past, a living brush-
stroke, painting its fresco on the walls of the
Jonathan Tulloch
Touches of class
THE PERENNIAL subject of class was in the
news again recently when the BBC published
some new research, proposing a whole new set
of social gradations. With it was a two-minute
online questionnaire that told you where you
stand. I am, it turns out, a new affluent worker,
which is wrong on at least one count.
Class is a venerable idea, and an ancient
word. The Romans, in the days of the citys
sixth king, Servius Tullius, divided their cit-
izenry into five groups according to their wealth.
Each of these was known as a classis. When
the word came into English in the sixteenth
century, via the medieval French classe, it was
used in historical accounts of the Roman sys-
tem but also as a term for categories of things
with something in common, such as plants.
The notion of classes as a hierarchy of cat-
egories came later. The Oxford English
Dictionarys first citation is from a 1616 Ben
Jonson masque called Mercury Vindicated
from the Alchemists at Court, in which Vulcan,
representing the alchemists, tries to bind the
volatile element Mercury. Call forth the
creatures of the first class, says Vulcan,
demonstrating his power to create life.
The application of this hierarchical idea to
social strata is from the seventeenth century.
It largely superseded the word order as in
lower orders which had been in use since
the fifteenth century. The use of class to refer
to the abstract idea of social rankings did not
come in until the start of the turbulent nine-
teenth century. It was followed by such telling
combinations as class division (1841), class
struggle (1839), class hatred (1842) and class
consciousness (1887, in the first translation
of Das Kapital). (The use of class as a term
of approval youve got class is American,
from the turn of the twentieth century.)
In his 1753 Essay on the Government of
Children, Britains first childcare manual, James
Nelson referred to five classes: the nobility
(from the Latin nobilitas); the gentry (those
of gentle birth); the genteel trades (also
derived from gentle); the common trades;
and the peasantry (ultimately derived from
the Latin pagus, meaning country district).
Subsequently, things tended to be simpli-
fied. Aristocracy at the top; middle class, where
you might expect; the common people, or
working class (from 1789), at the bottom. Marx
recognised only two classes: bourgeoisie and
proletariat. This latter word comes from the
Latin proletarius, which was the term used
in Rome for an impoverished man whose only
contribution to society was the fathering of
proles, meaning offspring.
In our own times, class has become more
complicated again. The widely used National
Readership Survey (NRS) social grades divide
everyone up into grades A, B, C1, C2, D and
E. The BBCs study questioned 161,000
people about their lives, occupations, incomes
and cultural activities. Then, because those
surveyed (online) were all too middle-class,
it asked 1,000 more in interviews. Seven social
classes were identified, from the elite at the
top to the precariat at the bottom.
This ugly portmanteau, hammered together
out of precarious and proletariat, was appar-
ently coined by French sociologists in the 1980s,
but it was popularised in a 2011 book by
British economist Guy Standing, called
Precariat: the new dangerous class. It means
those who live in a permanent state of
employment insecurity, shuttling between poor
jobs and no jobs. Their household incomes are
about 8,000 a year, they have no cultural lives
at all, and their few friends are all similarly
impoverished and excluded. Perhaps being a
proletarius wasnt so bad.