Features

Let’s vote ‘in’ to renew the EU, says Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O’Connor

7 May 2016

9:00 AM

7 May 2016

9:00 AM

From the time of the French revolution, the Catholic Church has always encouraged relationships between nations that draw them together rather than divide them. It is for this reason that the Church has always been broadly supportive of the European Union, although with reservations.

There will be many Catholics on both sides of the coming referendum. Many of us have concerns about recent developments in the EU, such as the official removal of the reference to the continent’s Christian history from the European Constitution a few years ago. The more general push towards secularisation troubles us, too.

Recent popes have questioned the tendency to regard the goal of the EU as the optimisation of market forces. They have challenged Europe to rediscover its roots and to renew itself and reconnect with its citizens, and to realise that a narrow EU will eventually atrophy and die.

It is instructive to read what Pope-emeritus Benedict says about Europe. He argues that the approach of Europe’s founding fathers — which spoke to the moral heritage of the continent — is absent from the debate about its future. Europe’s founding fathers, he says, ‘were seeking a European identity that would not dissolve or deny the national identities but rather unite them at a higher level of unity into one community of peoples’.


He argues that, without reference to the values and common traditions that made Europe in the past, the future of Europe is at risk. Europe ‘must not give up on itself’, he says. He further warns of a Europe that has come about through the rupture of faith and reason that began during the Enlightenment and developed in the centuries since then. It is a Europe cut adrift from its roots and history, a Europe that separates itself from ethical traditions and relies solely on technological reasoning and its possibilities. Christianity, in Benedict’s view, has a significant role in contributing to the renewal and building of a new Europe. So also, I believe, has Britain in shaping Europe for future years.

Pope Francis has not addressed the concept of Europe as much as his predecessors, in part because he is Argentinian. Yet, addressing the European Parliament two years ago, he too urged the continent’s democratic leaders ‘to return to the firm conviction of the founding fathers, of a European Union which envisioned a future based on a capacity to work together in bridging divisions and in fostering peace and fellowship between all the peoples of this continent’.

‘A Europe which is no longer open to the transcendent dimension of life is a Europe which risks slowly losing its own soul and that humanistic spirit which it still loves and defends,’ he added. Pope Francis affirmed that ‘Unity does not mean uniformity of political, economic and cultural life or ways of thinking. Indeed, all authentic unity draws from the rich diversities which make it up. In this sense it is like a family, which is all the more united when each of its members is free to be fully himself or herself. I consider Europe as a family of peoples.’

I was born and brought up in England and, like many others, I have Irish roots. One of my brothers was a regular officer in the British Army and fought in the Korean War. I care deeply about Britain and its future. However, I also feel close to Europe because I lived for many years in Italy and, as a bishop, I have been in touch with fellow bishops from all the European countries on a regular basis. As a result, I understand how they feel about the need for wider European unity and cooperation.

This year’s EU referendum requires the people of our country to think seriously about a range of questions. Is Europe just a marriage of convenience or has it a set of common values? How can we ensure that the engagement and debate of the weeks leading up to the referendum are not held at the level of the lowest common denominator or simply reduced to the utilitarian? Is there the risk of a wave of English nationalism? Would a vote to leave the EU lead to Scottish secession? Would it confuse and complicate the relations between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland? The EU has been a stabilising force in Europe over the past 60 years: how would those advocating a ‘leave’ argument build bridges with the EU rather than barriers? How can all Europeans take up the challenge of the popes to refocus and to renew Europe?

It seems to me that all the above is not just a British problem but one shared by the whole of Europe. Our continent has reached a crossroads. There are very many crises facing Europe. The referendum in the UK is about much more than simply whether this country remains in the EU. It touches, as our friends from beyond the borders of Europe have reminded us in recent weeks, fundamental issues about Britain’s place in the world.

Personally, I regret that this referendum is taking place without sufficient awareness and reflection on the more profound issues of our time. Those campaigning for Britain to stay in the EU need to show that the challenges facing the UK and our European partners are better faced together than apart, and they need to explain why this is the case. A narrow utilitarian approach — trying to demonstrate how much better off each family might be in pounds and pence — will not work. The need for reform and renewal in Europe is evident. It is still not clear whether the EU is capable of such renewal, but the UK’s withdrawal would, I think, make renewal even more difficult. That is the main reason why I wish Britain to remain a part of the European community and cooperate with its partners in making a vital contribution to that renewal with its own particular creativity and its desire to build a union that is greater than the sum of its parts. The UK should not only look for its own interests, but be concerned for all human society on our continent and throughout the world.

Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O’Connor is Archbishop Emeritus of Westminster and Cardinal-Priest of St Maria sopra Minerva.

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Show comments
  • congreve

    Why Leave, if the EU is going to disintegrate anyway? We should Remain, to be on hand to forge Fortress Europe, to pick over the spoils of collapse and to extirpate the Death Gene of Deracianated Altruism from the body politic.

    • Bonkim

      Do you want to wait to be hurtled in space by the shock wave?

  • licjjs

    If Cardinal Murphy-O’Connor’s judgment on the EU is anything like his judgment on voting in conclaves, then I shall pass.

  • D J

    Even those who encourage us to remain talk of change and reform which never comes. It only worsens with time. It was a nice idea but it has failed.

    • Bonkim

      Change and reform not in their power to give. Europe by nature is a Fascist State.

  • If there was a shred of evidence that the EU, like the Church, was semper reformanda, he might have a point.
    But with or without the UK, the EU will never reform, only widen its powers, strengthen its grip.

    • Bonkim

      Reformation is an alien concept to the pope and Christendom.

      • Jingleballix

        Very good………

    • CockneyblokefromReading

      Correct. the EU will NEVER reform, and Britain couldn’t influence it anyway, we’d just be out-voted every time.

  • Chris Bartelt

    No. Let’s not.

  • Mary Ann

    Makes a change for me to agree with the Catholic church. Leave seems to be all about hate, such an easy emotion to stir up with snide remarks about foreigners on trains.

    • Bonkim

      Not hate but independence – man’s natural condition. The Catholic Church is Fascist – sticks held together by a common faith.

      • JabbaPapa

        Man’s natural condition is not independence, as any introductory work on anthropology will inform you. Man’s natural condition is inter-dependence. Not inter-dependence between tribes or States certainly ; but independence as a utopian ideal is a modern invention.

        And no, the Catholic Church is most certainly NOT “fascist”, you twit.

    • Dacorum

      The Catholic Church wants to re-establish Catholic domination from Rome, so that should tell you that you backing the wrong cause by supporting the Remain side.

    • JJD

      When are you going to stop coming here and posting mindless smears?

      • Uzaydan Misafir

        She’s entitled to be here.Just like you.

        • JJD

          And I’m entitled to wish she wasn’t. We can play that game all day.

          • Uzaydan Misafir

            Exactly, so why did you bother in the first place?

          • JJD

            No – *you* brought up the trivial point about being “entitled” or not. You, not me.

          • Uzaydan Misafir

            Why did you post that original post then?

          • JJD

            Because Mary Ann was exasperating me with her silly smears, repeated ad nauseam despite repeated correction by others on this forum.

  • Penny Henry

    Does Europe have a set of common values? That’s a very good question.

    • Bonkim

      That of the Pope.

      • Penny Henry

        Wishful thinking?

    • JJD

      It is, and I think it does. But the more the EU seeks to expand itself (out of narrow economic interests), even taking in Muslim-majority Turkey, the less feasible that idea becomes.

      • Uzaydan Misafir

        You’re a perfect example of what’s wrong with Brexiters.

        EU is not going to “take in” Turkey. They’re not. Why do you lie about that? Turkey is the very early stages of negotiations and nothing suggests they will be allowed to join. .

        • JJD

          If that’s a perfect example of what’s wrong with Brexiters, you’re really clutching at straws.

          I’m not committed to the idea that the EU will take in Turkey. It might happen, it might not (you see, I don’t pretend I can tell the future, as George Osborne does). But it’s a very real possibility, and one that concerns me deeply.

          • Uzaydan Misafir

            No, it’s not a possibility. Do you seriously think Cyprus will agree? Not happening.

          • JJD

            Oh. So you are one of the ones who can tell the future. Like all those clever folks at the IMF.

            At the moment, I don’t think there’s an imminent danger of Turkey coming in. But it’s not inconceivable. If the big hitters decide Turkey comes in, Turkey comes in.

          • Uzaydan Misafir

            Oh,
            you’re one of those guys that know nothing and excel at buying the Daily Mail scaremongering.

          • JJD

            I’ve never bought the DM in my life, you twit.

          • Conway

            You think Cyprus will get a veto? Cyprus underwent a bail in – the EU controls the money. Work it out.

          • Uzaydan Misafir

            Get? They have a veto.

            What is it you don’t understand?

  • Bonkim

    Echos of a Christendom resurrected.

  • Cis

    Leaving the EU doesn’t mean leaving Europe.

    We will still be Europeans (or at least, some of us will), and we will still engage with our European neighbours socially, economically and politically.

    What we won’t be is part of the Monnet programme, subject to the diktat of the unelected and anti-democratic Brussels nomenklatura.

    Yes, Brexit will mean some difficult years ahead. But we will be free to decide for ourselves how to manage our return to independence.

    PS what is it with cardinals? First Vinny and now M-O’C… Why don’t they stick to religion and golf, and leave politics to individual consciences?

    • JJD

      I agree that the Cardinal was somewhat carelessly conflating the EU and Europe in his article.

      But he has as much right to speak in public as anyone else, as you or I writing here. Why don’t you and I stick to our other interests as opposed to writing these words? Well, because we chose to write these words. So did the Cardinal. He gets to.

      • Harry Kobeans

        Since he reports into Italy/the Vatican he is hardly going to come out in favour of Brexit is he?

        • JJD

          Why the heck not? Who’s going to stop him? He’s retired, for goodness’s sake.

          • JabbaPapa

            Even if he weren’t, Catholics are not enslaved to Vatican City State.

        • Stigenace

          Hello Harry,

          When the Telegraph shut down its online comment
          facility the frequent contributors feared we would lose touch with one
          another. Well, a grand chap, MiddleandExile, has set up a channel on
          Disqus where quite a few of those who used to gather below the line on
          the letters page now convene every day to chat about the contents of
          that page, or anything else which takes our fancy, and we’ve managed to
          carry on in the same spirit as before. We’ve gained some new recruits
          but we’ve also lost some familiar faces and one of those is yours. On
          and off I’ve been trying to make contact with those left behind and now
          that I’ve found one of your comments – with your “private” status it
          hasn’t been so easy to track you down – I can provide you with a link to
          our new forum.

          https://disqus.com/home/channel/notthetelegraphletters/

          You’re more than welcome to join in and I know the others would be pleased to see you so do pay us a visit.

          [You’ll find an identical invitation on a Breitbart comment. I thought I’d post two to increase the chances of you finding one of them.]

        • Bendys

          Don’t bother with
          https://disqus.com/home/channel/notthetelegraphletters/
          It’s run by the same people. No democracy whatsoever.
          Comments about the real donors of the Remain campaign are forbidden.

      • Marvin

        Who gave him the right to impose his stupid dogma and fantasy on real life issues. BUTT OUT!

        • JJD

          No-one needs to give him the right to speak. Free speech is a human right, in case you missed that memo. So unless you’re going to argue Cormac Murphy-O’Connor is not a human being (an argument I’d probably have more time for than the one you are offering), he’s got as much right as you or I to say whatever he wants.

      • Stan Getback

        Haha, you tell me, do you really believe that he is sincere ?! Naïve or what ? Dear, dear..

        • JJD

          Why should I suspect he is insincere? Is your default position in life is that everyone has an ulterior motive? The guy obviously thinks we’re better remaining in.

    • Uzaydan Misafir

      How do you intend engage with your neighbours?

      Quite frankly: Nobody on the Brexit side has shown any realistic solutions at all. Just dreams that it somehow will work out.

      • JJD

        How do you suppose it “somehow works out” for every other independent democracy in the world? By magic?

        • Uzaydan Misafir

          That’s why I asked you what your plan is. You behave as if magic will somehow solve the issue.

          You’d think that by now Brexiters could tell us what you want but you haven’t done so. Yet.

          • JJD

            A number of solutions have been put forward, and each has met with criticism from the Remain side. In terms of trade deals, Canada has been cited, and criticised. Likewise Norway and Switzerland. Likewise WTO rules. Most Brexiters – and most reasonable Remainers – accept that the likely outcome would be “none of the above”. A trade deal would likely be made, the terms of which we cannot know in advance. But it would have its drawbacks, too, no doubt. Not-knowing is a necessarily unsatisfactory position to be in. It would be far more satisfactory if we knew the future, but we don’t. This is a decision we have to make through guesswork based on the best available data, and working from political first principles. For me, the latter is at least as important as the former.

          • Uzaydan Misafir

            Yes, and this is why I say there has been no realistic solutions from the Leave-side.

            I’m pretty confident there will be Brexit and whilst I can see why immigration is an issue I fail to see why the camp without proper solutions can be winning.

          • JJD

            I’d make 2 points.

            Firstly, you’ve got to ask yourself, realistically, what the offer of a fully worked-out solution could look like this side of Brexit. There are too many variables, too many unknowns, for anyone to say “here’s what our relationship with the EU will look like post-Brexit”. We can give the broad brush-strokes of what we *expect* to happen (there will likely be a trade deal after a period of negotiation; Britain will likely continue having to pay the EU a lot of money for access to the common market; etc, etc, etc) but we can’t give detail. And it’s unreasonable to expect detail.

            Secondly, and importantly: the word “solution” implies the existence of a “problem”. So what is the “problem” to which we so desperately need a solution? It turns out that the “problem” is one shared by every other independent developed democracy in the world. In fact, it looks very much like the “problem”, in your eyes, is simply being an independent developed democracy, and facing all the difficulties independent developed democracies face.

          • Uzaydan Misafir

            What’s the referendum about then if you don’t have a problem?

            Of course you have problems. European immigrants, laws to protect employees and other evil stuff coming from “Brussels”.

            Regarding the trade deal it’s safe to say it will be much worse than what you have today unless you consider the right to avoid European immigrants that valuable. Do you think people outside England are so stupid they don’t see that?

          • JJD

            You misunderstand. I certainly have a problem with the EU, as lots of other people do. That’s not what you were talking about, though. You were talking about “solutions” to the “problem” of a post-Brexit UK. I wanted to suggest that the UK being an independent democracy is not actually a “problem”. It ought to be the natural state of things. Getting there might be a bit of a bumpy ride, but I think, on balance, it is worth the inconvenience.

          • Harry Kobeans

            Well it worked ok during the centuries before we joined the EU.

          • livnletliv

            We want to be independent.

      • DavidEnglish84

        “How do you intend engage with your neighbours”

        Well, we have these things called “telephones”. And people called “diplomats”. . . . .

        It worked pretty well for the first 1000 years of this countries existence.

        • Uzaydan Misafir

          Oh,

          there you go again.

          You see, the problem here is that so many of you are stuck in the past.

          • DavidEnglish84

            If by that you mean we know enough history to spot the authoritarian left’s BS – yes.

            Your argument that this country is incapable of governing itself can be easily disproved by reading a history book. What you call “being stuck in the past”.

          • Uzaydan Misafir

            You joined the EU because you were on the verge of becoming a Third world country.

          • livnletliv

            Why are you stuck in the past?

  • Dacorum

    The last thing the leadership the Catholic Church wants is for the people of Europe to be able to think for themselves and to decide their future. That is why the Catholic leadership supports the Remain side because the EU, by its very nature, is dictatorial and undemocratic, and is largely dominated by Roman Catholic countries that follow their wishes.

    Individual Catholics able to think for themselves, who make up the overwhelming majority of Catholics in our country, do not share the Cardinal’s views. Even in the time of the first Queen Elizabeth and the Bull of Excommunication, most English Catholics remained loyal and opposed foreign rule. I trust British Catholics to remain equally loyal today and vote against foreign rule by voting for Brexit.

    • JabbaPapa

      The last thing the leadership the Catholic Church wants is for the people of Europe to be able to think for themselves

      What a load of cobblers.

      • Dacorum

        No, it is YOUR reply this is a load of cobblers.

        The Catholic Church has ALWAYS stood in the way of people thinking for themselves and does so today on matters like birth control. That is why they stood in the way of the Bible being translated into the vernacular because they knew that would expose the lies the Catholic Church had been preaching and practicing for centuries in the name of Christianity, like indulgences and the invention of purgatory which has no Biblical foundation whatsoever. The Inquisition was their secret police to enforce security and their modern day successor, which the previous Pope headed, was instrumental in covering up child abuse.

        The one thing that matters to the Catholic Church is their own position and nothing else – that was why the activities of the paedophile priests was covered up for so long.

        • hobspawn

          “The one thing that matters to the [establishment] is their own position and nothing else – that was why the activities of the paedophile [establishment grandees] was covered up for so long.”

          The Catholic Church is only slightly better than other human institutions in this regard. Unfortunately, an army of Christs was unavailable. We have to make the best of it.

        • JabbaPapa

          Another load of cobblers !!

          Do you offer a reduction when selling them by bulk ?

          • Dacorum

            There are none so blind as people like you who refuse to see.
            Goodbye.

          • JabbaPapa

            There are none so blind as people like you who refuse to see

            Ah. You speak from personal experience of your own bigoted anti-Catholic blindness.

          • Dacorum

            No.

            People who throw about insults like you have lost the argument, not that you ever put forward any argument to counter mine in the first place!

            Goodbye.

          • JabbaPapa

            This is because your position is so utterly indefensible as to not be worth engaging with.

          • Dacorum

            No, it’s because your tiny little mind is incapable of pointing forward a counter argument.

          • JabbaPapa

            Laughable — YOU made a claim, based on nothing more solid than prejudice, and I’m supposed to treat it seriously ???

            Meanwhile back in reality the Western University system was created by the Catholic Church.

          • Dacorum

            I think you have lost the plot.
            I expect you think the treatment of Galileo, who attended the university of Pisa, was tried by the Inquisition, found “vehemently suspect of heresy”, forced to recant, and who spent the rest of his life under house arrest is a perfect example of the advancement of knowledge fostered by the Catholic Church through the universities you say they founded!
            It was the protestant world that forged ahead after the Reformation because they did not persecute scientists. Contrast the appalling treatment of Galileo with that of the honours given to Isaac Newton, who attended Trinity College Cambridge (founded by Henry VIII) and who was knighted for his work and made President of the Royal Society.

          • JabbaPapa

            The Holy See entirely financed Galileo’s scientific work.

            He was put on trial for **theological** reasons, NOT because of his scientific ideas.

            You DO understand the difference between science and theology, I presume ?

          • Dacorum

            I absolutely love your answer “He was put on trial for **theological** reasons, NOT because of his scientific ideas” because it so clearly proves all I have been saying about the Roman Catholic church and how it repressed people through fear and, in the case of poor Galileo, through sheer terror. The Roman Catholic Church invented the Thought Police” of George Orwell’s 1984.

            Thank you again for showing just how right I was when I wrote:

            “The Catholic Church has ALWAYS stood in the way of people thinking for themselves and does so today on matters like birth control. That is why they stood in the way of the Bible being translated into the vernacular because they knew that would expose the lies the Catholic Church had been preaching and practicing for centuries in the name of Christianity, like indulgences and the invention of purgatory which has no Biblical foundation whatsoever. The Inquisition was their secret police to enforce security and their modern day successor, which the previous Pope headed, was instrumental in covering up child abuse”.

          • JabbaPapa

            You really do talk a non-stop stream of utter rubbish, don’t you.

            Galileo’s punishment amounted to a comfortable house arrest, and a personal man servant, with all his personal needs payed for by the Vatican.

            What “terror”, you nincompoop ???

          • Dacorum

            I am shocked to come across someone who is such an apologist for repression and terror by the Catholic Church as you. I have absolutely no doubt that your responses are a grave embarrassment to decent Catholics who would not defend the persecution of Galileo by the inquisition, as you have done, and would say their church was wrong to put him on trial as a heretic, threaten him with torture if he did not recant and place him under permanent house arrest until his death.

            And of course it was TERROR that Galileo faced because he was forced by the Inquisition to recant his scientific findings or face a far worse punishment as a heretic. The inquisition operated like any secret police in a more modern day repressive fascist or communist state by forcing conformity and repressing heretical ideas.

            Let us examine in detail the history of just how the Roman catholic church persecuted him:

            In 1616 a committee of consultants declares to the Inquisition that the propositions that the Sun is the center of the universe and that the Earth has an annual motion are absurd in philosophy, at least erroneous in theology, and formally a heresy. On orders of the Pope Paul V, Cardinal Bellarmine calls Galileo to his residence and administers a warning not to hold or defend the Copernican theory; Galileo is also forbidden to discuss the theory orally or in writing. Yet he is reassured by Pope Paul V and by Cardinal Bellarmine that he has not been on trial nor being condemned by the Inquisition.

            In 1624 Galileo meets repeatedly with his (at that time) friend and patron Pope Urban VIII, he is allowed to write about the Copernican theory as long as he treated it as a mathematical hypothesis.

            In 1625 a complaint against Galileo’s publication The Assayer is lodged at the Inquisition by a person unknown. The complaint charges that the atomistic theory embraced in this book cannot be reconciled with the official church doctrine regarding the Eucharist, in which bread and wine are “transubstantiated” into Christ’s flesh and blood. After an investigation by the Inquisition, Galileo is cleared.

            In 1630 he completed his book Dialogue Concerning the Two Chief World Systems in which the Ptolemaic and Copernican models are discussed and compared and was cleared (conditionally) to publish it by the Vatican. The book was printed in 1632 but Pope Urban VIII, convinced by the arguments of various Church officials, stopped its distribution; the case is referred to the Inquisition and Galileo was summoned to Rome despite his infirmities.

            In 1633 Galileo was formally interrogated for 18 days and on April 30 Galileo confesses that he may have made the Copernican case in the Dialogue too strong and offers to refute it in his next book. Unmoved, the Pope decides that Galileo should be imprisoned indefinitely. Soon after, with a formal threat of torture, Galileo is examined by the Inquisition and sentenced to prison and religious penances, the sentence is signed by 6 of the 10 inquisitors. In a formal ceremony at a the church of Santa Maria Sofia Minerva, Galileo abjures his errors. He is then put in house arrest in Sienna. After these tribulations he begins writing his Discourse on Two New Sciences.

            Galileo remained under house arrest, despite many medical problems and a deteriorating state of health, until his death in 1642. The Church finally accepted that Galileo might be right in 1983.

            ONLY a complete fool like you would not regard being threatened with torture as not terror!!! And only a complete fool would not condemn the indefinite house arrest of an old man as punishment as “a comfortable house arrest” and nothing to worry about when it is concrete evidence of the repressive nature of your Church which decent Catholics would not dream of defending nowadays.

          • JabbaPapa

            In 1616 a committee of consultants declares to the Inquisition that the propositions that the Sun is the center of the universe and that the Earth has an annual motion are absurd in philosophy

            Do you seriously believe that the Sun is “the center of the universe” ???

            The ridiculous atheist rantings about Galileo systematically seek to deny that his theories were scientifically wrong.

            After these tribulations he begins writing his Discourse on Two New Sciences

            Well doesn’t that quite utterly deny your characterisation of him as having been silenced …

      • Pip

        Ignoramus.

    • JJD

      “The last thing the leadership the Catholic Church wants is for the people of Europe to be able to think for themselves and to decide their future.”

      How is it, then, that the Cardinal presents one of the most measured and respectful articles I’ve come across during this whole campaign? It’s Cameron who doesn’t want us to think for ourselves, delivering propaganda leaflets to every household at the taxpayer’s expense. And some of the Out campaigners have been at it too – scaremongering, exaggerating, cattle-prodding, dog-whistling. I actually don’t see any of that tone in what the Cardinal has written. It is actually the polar opposite of what you claim it is. It is an invitation to think.

      • Dacorum

        Firstly, I think it is quite wrong for a religious leader to campaign on one side in a referendum on sovereignty. By entering the political arena in this way, he lays himself wide open to attack because there will be Catholics who may vote the way he suggests because he told them to. He has undue influence. How would you feel if the Cardinal had entered the General Election campaign and said the faithful should vote for one particular party if that party was not one you support?

        Secondly, I distrust his motives. I believe he sees our membership of the EU, and the inevitable drive to “ever closer union” as stated in the Treaty of Rome, as strengthening the influence and reach of the RC church as the RC church is the dominant church in the EU.

        Thirdly, if he really wanted us to think, he should be advocating leaving the EU to restore our sovereignty and democracy so that the people really have to think at General Elections because their vote will really make a difference as we will be controlling all our laws.

        Finally, sovereignty is the key issue in this referendum. Who should decide our laws – us or them, a bunch of unelected and unaccountable EU bureaucrats and the leaders of 26 or so other countries with very different agendas to us? it is a fight to restore our independence that we ourselves exercised before joining the EEC/EU.
        .

        • JJD

          All in all, he would have been better not expressing public support for Remain. True enough. But, in his defence, this is not a deeply partisan article. He’s not inviting Catholics to vote Remain out of loyalty to Rome, or for any other motive. He comes across to me as a citizen trying to convince other citizens. In fact, I think even that is too strong for the article in question. He’s a citizen putting forward some thoughts for consumption by other citizens, sharing his view, and encouraging them to engage with the deeper-lying issues.

          I’m not sure the parallel with the general election quite works. A cardinal getting into party politics and promoting a particular party’s agenda would be wrong. But this is not party politics, it is politics in the broad sense. And in that sense of politics, I don’t think it is necessarily wrong for a religious leader to express a political opinion. However, as I said, I think I would accept that he’d have been better not to have written this at all.

          • Dacorum

            There doesn’t seem to be much between our views on whether the cardinal should have expressed his support for remain.

            The only point I might add is that referendum is extremely political – in fact it could not be more political. At the heart of it is the political question whether or not we should govern ourselves, make our own laws and restore democratic accountability to the law making process or whether we should continue on the road to “an ever closer union” when there is no support here for the direction the EU is going in and we will always find ourselves to be in the minority.

            Leaving the EU is really a no brainer. To stay in would be an act of political insanity because it is clear that even the Remainers don’t want to join the Euro and move to the political and economic union that the EU wants to achieve.

        • JabbaPapa

          I think it is quite wrong for a religious leader to campaign on one side in a referendum.

          WHY on EARTH should that be ?

          I mean, NOBODY bats an eyelid if the Chief Rabbi involves himself in politics … Or the Archbishop of Canterbury. Or for that matter any religious leaders, EXCEPT for the Catholic ones.

          This special attitude towards the Catholic Church is primordially based on straightforward anti-Catholic prejudice.

          • Dacorum

            What are you jabbering on about!
            I made myself quite clear when I wrote “I think it is quite wrong for a religious leader to campaign on one side in the referendum on sovereignty” so why isn’t it clear to you that my view applies to all religious leaders including the Archbishop of Canterbury and the Chief Rabbi?
            I do not have any objections to religious leaders campaigning on religious matters, like gay marriage.

          • JabbaPapa

            I made myself quite clear

            And you failed to answer : WHY on EARTH should that be ?

          • Dacorum

            WHY on EARTH should I clarify my very clear answer when you have consistently failed to answer my points with anything other than abuse?

          • JabbaPapa

            Merely repeating the same statement is not a “very clear answer” as to why it should be seen as true.

          • Dacorum

            What is the point in answering your repeated posts when you refuse to engage in debate with me?
            I don’t even see what is not clear to you or what you mean by “as to why it should be seen as true” but I’m not inviting you to reply because any continuation would be pointless.

          • JabbaPapa

            You refuse to answer my initial question, and then claim **I** am the one not engaging in “debate” ? Wot a laff.

          • Dacorum

            You must be a pathological liar which fits in well with your blind, totally unreasoned support for the RC Church.

            You have refused to engage in debate in answer my repeated post below except by saying “Another load of cobblers” and then you followed that up with personal abuse when you replied “You speak from personal experience of your own bigoted anti-Catholic blindness”.

            “The Catholic Church has ALWAYS stood in the way of people thinking for themselves and does so today on matters like birth control. That is why they stood in the way of the Bible being translated into the vernacular because they knew that would expose the lies the Catholic Church had been preaching and practicing for centuries in the name of Christianity, like indulgences and the invention of purgatory which has no Biblical foundation whatsoever. The Inquisition was their secret police to enforce security and their modern day successor, which the previous Pope headed, was instrumental in covering up child abuse”.

          • JabbaPapa

            Your mendacity is vile.

            There is no “debate” to be had about Truth.

            WHY should priests be excluded from public debates ?

            Your suggestion otherwise is of the worst imaginable manner of atheist dogmatism.

          • Dacorum

            You say there is “There is no “debate” to be had about Truth” which is why you support the persecution, the charge of heresy, the threat of torture, the permanent house arrest of the old sick Galileo after he was forced to recant the truth and all because it clashed with RC dogma.

            You seem incapable of interpreting what I said about priests. I never said they should not engage in public debates as I replied to you “I do not have any objections to religious leaders campaigning on religious matters, like gay marriage”. As it happens I would agree with his views on that subject as I believe marriage should only be between a man and a woman.

            What I did say in my reply to JJD was that “I think it is quite wrong for a religious leader to campaign on one side in a referendum on sovereignty. By entering the political arena in this way, he lays himself wide open to attack because there will be Catholics who may vote the way he suggests because he told them to. He has undue influence. How would you feel if the Cardinal had entered the General Election campaign and said the faithful should vote for one particular party if that party was not one you support?”

            When I attacked his views on the referendum you see that as an attack on the RC Church which is precisely why he should not have entered the political arena and stayed neutral like the Archbishop of Canterbury. Neutrality is the only sensible line for the leader of the RC Church to take on the referendum.

    • Pip

      The RCC is an anachronism and a den of corruption and iniquity, the arrogance of these bigoted fools who would have us believe their opinions hold any weight is nauseating.

  • Ivan Ewan

    Biggles! The rack!

  • Antoine Bisset

    His Eminence may as well discuss how many angels may dance on the point of a pin It may be interesting, it may be a challenge, yet is entirely irrelevant.
    Our concern should be the invasion of muslims, a tide that seeks to drown us and claim these shores as their own.
    The whole thrust of EU policy has been to remove Catholic influence, to remove moral standards, to expunge history as we know it, to replace all with servitude to banks and big business and to govern by means of edicts compiled in line with PC stupidities and based on moral relativism.
    His Eminence would do well to consider the speeches of Viktor Orban which are both clear and stark in their detailingof the imminent dangers of utter catastrophe that are on course to overwhelm us.

  • milford

    The Catholic Church was also supportive of The Inquisition, Nazism and Franco’s fascism so it’s got form and bad judgement as far as I’m concerned. Not to mention the endemic paedophilia that stalks the cloisters of fear-mongering it thrives on. We should we heed their opinion? Methinks not.

    • hobspawn

      “The Catholic Church was also supportive of …Nazism…”

      Are you sure about that?

      “Not to mention the endemic paedophilia that stalks the cloisters of fear-mongering it thrives on.”

      Scarce and unreliable paedophilia stats suggest that priests manage to be less than half as dangerous to children as your friends are. Priests are much better than the average, but should do better. Film at 11.

      Did you get your facts from a novel?

      • Jackthesmilingblack

        Hitler’s first international treaty was with the Vatican. Under which the Catholic Centre Party stood aside to give the National Socialists a clear run in the elections. In return, the Catholic Church was placed in sole charge of education in Germany. Catch um young.

        • JabbaPapa

          The Concordat was negociated by Von Papen, leader of the Conservative Party, NOT by Hitler, NOT by the N@zis, and it was instantly violated by them before Von Papen even got back from Rome.

          The notion that the Vatican signed a treaty “with Hitler” is one of the biggest lies ever told about WW2, and you’re ignorant enough to not only believe, but repeat it.

          the Catholic Church was placed in sole charge of education in Germany.

          In fact, the N@zi Party after it seized sole power in Germany established its own monopoly on the education of children

          The truth is that the Konkordat was never implemented in Germany, due to its absolute and total rejection by the N@zis.

          • Powerdaddy

            You said ….”I understand that your ignorance and bigotry are deeply ingrained.”

            Summis desiderantes affectibus
            The bull recognized the existence of witches:

            “[m]any persons of both sexes, unmindful of their own salvation
            and straying from the Catholic Faith, have abandoned themselves to
            devils, incubi and succubi, and by their incantations, spells,
            conjurations, and other accursed charms and crafts, enormities and
            horrid offences, have slain infants yet in the mother’s womb, as also
            the offspring of cattle, have blasted the produce of the earth, the
            grapes of the vine, the fruits of the trees, nay, men and women, beasts
            of burthen, herd-beasts, as well as animals of other kinds, vineyards,
            orchards, meadows, pasture-land, corn, wheat, and all other cereals;
            these wretches furthermore afflict and torment men and women, beasts of burthen, herd-beasts, as well as animals of other kinds, with terrible
            and piteous pains and sore diseases, both internal and external; they
            hinder men from performing the sexual act and women from conceiving,
            …they blasphemously renounce that Faith which is theirs by the
            Sacrament of Baptism, and at the instigation of the Enemy of Mankind
            they do not shrink from committing and perpetrating the foulest
            abominations and filthiest excesses to the deadly peril of their own
            souls, (…) the abominations and enormities in question remain
            unpunished not without open danger to the souls of many and peril of
            eternal damnation.
            BUT NOT AS IGNORANT AND BIGOTED AS YOUR AVERAGE MEDIEVAL POPE , EH?
            Which is my point entirely. Do agree that torturing witches is backwards?
            Are you ‘getting it’ yet?

          • JabbaPapa

            idiot

            Latin : https://la.wikisource.org/wiki/Summis_desiderantes_affectibus

            …ac suis incantationibus, carminibus et coniurationibus aliisque nefandis superstitiosis, et sortilegis excessibus, criminibus et delictis …

            The practices in question are clearly described as superstitions.

            Or what, do you think putting people like this – http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3125972/Face-face-cannibal-feasted-human-flesh-sold-meat-pies-interview-Brazilian-teacher-sick-Satanic-cult-wife-mistress-fed-remains-one-mother-toddler-daughter.html – on trial and punishing them for their evil crimes is somehow “wrong” ?

          • Powerdaddy

            lol
            So how many of the 200,000 people murdered in the witch hunts were witches and what percentage of them liked to make human pie?
            (hint: none of them were witches and almost the same number were cannibals. So maybe we have a few innocents killed for the sake of superstition?)
            Do you agree with witch torturing condoned by a pope?
            Yes or no.

          • JabbaPapa

            Amazing how you cannot bring yourself to admit being wrong in the slightest even when it is so demonstrated.

            witch hunts

            Historically, these were the work of lynch mobs. As can be seen for example in the present day Muslim world.

            The idea that they were “organised” by any kind of structured authority is patently ludicrous.

            200,000 is IIRC larger than the total number of people sentenced to death during the 600 years of the Inquisitions, the VAST majority of whom were, yes indeed, criminals — murderers, rapists, brigands, child molesters, etc. Your suggestion that it is the number of people “burned” for “witchcraft” is risible.

          • Powerdaddy

            There were several witchcraft acts passed during that time
            The penalty in the majority was death. Written into Law. “Organized”.

            200,000 (40,000, 50,000? who knows?) maybe over egging it slightly but the scope for this retrograde mentality is frightening. How many nut jobs took it upon themselves to go kill the local witch, in good faith or bad (lol?), we will never know. Nobody should have been murdered for being a witch, but that retrograde backward mentality shone through during Shakespeare’s time ( a time period you chose to bring up) …..

            The same old retrograde backward mentality that inspired someone to write… Exodus 22 ;18 Thou shalt not suffer a witch to live.

            The same retrograde backward mentality that made (makes?) people think that command was (is?) ‘good’

            Do you think Exodus 22 ;18 is a ‘good’ command?
            Or is it a retrograde backward command?

          • JabbaPapa

            slightly

            Exaggerating numbers by a hundred-fold or thousand-fold is not “slightly”, you idiot.

            Thanks anyway for admitting that you’re just making these numbers up as you go along.

            Every single part of your argument has been destroyed, and yet you carry on making it as if nothing has changed — I’ve seen this blinkered attitude before in other sockpuppets, and I am very close to just deciding to block this one too.

          • Powerdaddy

            Nope.
            You said witch hunts were unorganized, but penalties were written into law for the ‘crime’ of being a witch. So their persecution and prosecution was organized. That is a fact.
            40,000 killed for being a witch during that era is a conservative estimate told by historians. The only reason I quote 200,000 (which is 4 or 5 fold increase of the historians estimate, not ‘a hundred or a thousand fold’ you idiot) is because no one knows the exact figure, least of all you.
            But if them people were ignorant enough to write death to witches into law they sure were ignorant enough to act independently and in secret to correct this ‘crime’ of being a witch. Driven by such backward ignorant commands as ‘thou shalt not suffer a witch to live’
            Even if it was just 1% of the first figure I gave 2000 murders in the name of ignorance IS STILL TO MANY, wouldn’t you agree?
            The only reason we are talking about witch hunts is because I complain about backwards ignorant mentality of those people who lived centuries ago have informed your beliefs today. You defend them and said along the lines of they wasn’t ignorant because they wrote stories and invented laws. I gave you examples of the some of the laws they wrote (stoning to death for blasphemy & throwing priests daughters into the fire) as ACTUAL PROOF of their ignorant mentality. You have yet to condemn those laws or agree they are in fact mentally backwards and ignorant laws.

          • JabbaPapa

            40,000 killed for being a witch during that era is a conservative estimate

            “conservative” ???? I suppose that if by “that era” you were to define the entirety of European and North American History since the 1st Century you might be right, but then it would become so general as to be meaningless. Meanwhile the fact of the matter is that mediaeval witch hunts were typically conducted by local lynch mobs.

            You also seem to be assuming that all of those people were blameless and guilty of no crimes, that they weren’t psycopaths and worse, but that they were somehow “oppressed” or whatever.

            I certainly do not agree with the death penalty, but that does nothing to change its existence as historical and contemporary reality.

            But all you’re doing is to push a grotesque narrative whereby one particular group is more to blame for such things than, say, the State of Texas, or Protestant England, or modern China. In other words, you display nothing more than ignorance, bigotry, and anachronism in your tedious pursuit of these idiotic accusations.

            And yes, BTW, from the evidence I’ve seen during my Mediaeval studies, those targeted in witch hunts were typically the worst manner of violently dangerous psychopaths imaginable.

    • JabbaPapa

      Apart from hobspawn’s excellent comment :

      The Catholic Church was also supportive of … Franco’s fascism

      No she most certainly wasn’t, but the Church saw Franco as the least bad solution in the face of the atheist communists and freemasons who were actively engaged in attempts to destroy her by means of Government-organised death squads and mass murder.

      • JJD

        I think, on balance, the Church was right in that judgement. Especially lacking the foreknowledge of exactly how Franco would behave once in power. And also considering that we lack any exact knowledge as to what would have happened had the communists won (although we can guess well enough). Bottom line: sometimes there are no good solutions. Like with Syria, Libya, Israel-Palestine and the migrant crisis in our own day.

        • JabbaPapa

          I think, on balance, the Church was right in that judgement

          I think so too, and I agree with the rest of your comment.

          I lived for a short while in Franco’s Spain, and though I was very young, and so ignorant of much of the politics, the general sense that one had of his régime at the time was that although the Guardia Civil was very heavy-handed in its pursuit of criminals, Franco was essentially preparing the country for a return to Constitutional Monarchy under Crown Prince Juan Carlos, and political normalisation.

      • milford

        I didn’t realise the Catholic Church was a ‘she’. Catholic priests and nuns stole new born babies from Spanish couples in maternity hospitals run by ‘her’. They deemed the couples not fascist enough and told them their baby had died. They kept a dead baby girl and a dead baby boy in the freezer, would defrost it overnight and show it to the grieving parents the next day. They then sold the new borns to childless supporters of Franco. When the fascist ‘parents’ were on their deathbeds they spilled the beans big time on ‘her’ and furnished the ‘adoptees’ with all the details down to the names and addresses of the priests. Whoops. The truth will out in the end.

        • JabbaPapa

          Franco was a Gallicanist, who sought to enforce State control of the Church — he had a prison in Zamora where he locked up any priests who refused to obey the State.

          Your suggestion that the Church in Spain controlled Franco is the exact opposite of the truth.

    • Jingleballix

      You forgot the Counter-Reformation and the Jesuits………and of course the Catholic Church’s edict to encourage the assassination of Elizabeth I.

      The Catholic Church has always been a wicked, if not downright evil, institution.

      • “Never let the evidence get in the way of a strongly held conviction”.
        (See climate change, recycling, development aid, socialism, multiculturalism, benefits of EU membership).

      • JabbaPapa

        We’ll be sending an elite squad of albino monks to deal with you forthwith.

        • Jingleballix

          I believe you……….

      • Jackthesmilingblack

        The most evil organisation in the history of history itself.
        If Christianity were to be judged on the misery it has inflicted on mankind, who would be Christian? Far less Catholic.

        • Sanctimony

          Attaboy, Jack …

  • hobspawn

    As you would expect, a richer, more informed, and more philosophical article than the usual gutter menace, but this is wrong:

    “The need for reform and renewal in Europe is evident. It is still not clear whether the EU is capable of such renewal, but the UK’s withdrawal would, I think, make renewal even more difficult.”

    In fact, Brexit offers the only possibility of reform. 

    • JabbaPapa

      Brexit encouraging reform in a post-Brexit EU ? That seems doubtful.

      • hobspawn

        Not at all. Brexit won’t just encourage reform in the EU, it will prove that reform is a condition of the EU’s survival. If the identitarians have to storm the EU parliament there will be reform by torchlight.

        • JabbaPapa

          it will prove that reform is a condition of the EU’s survival

          There’s a great difference between North and South in people’s opinions of the EU, and many in the South would view Brexit with complete uninterest. They are unlikely to storm Brussels in protest.

          • hobspawn

            They can view Brexit with ‘uninterest’, but they will have to find a new money tree, and eventually, someone to defend the borders:

            https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t9yDf7uIDQo

            “They are not the victims here, we are. I want to go to work; I can’t. My children want to go to school; they can’t.”

            There will be reform, and Brexit will ‘help’ to make the case.

          • JabbaPapa

            You shouldn’t confuse a (horrid) state of crisis with general realities.

            Border controls, the immigration and refugee crises, and the failure of the EU to act decisively against its enemies in the Middle East are certainly all signs of weakness in some of the EU’s institutions and policies, but I cannot see that Brexit will help improve any of these things.

          • hobspawn

            I pray that what will emerge is a group of countries moving towards taking responsibility for themselves, and an international consensus, independent of any idea of political union, to protect the people of Europe. Not impossible once the Frankfurt school are exposed and removed from power.

          • Uzaydan Misafir

            I’m sure Sadiq Khan, mayor of London, is determined to save Europeans…

  • tenbelly

    The Catholic Church promoting the EU?
    It’s an improvement on paedophilia I suppose, but only just.

    • JabbaPapa

      Well done with the mindless atheist knee-jerk cliché reaction.

    • JJD

      Paedophilia is psycho-sexual disorder and a general social ill; it is not confined to the Catholic Church, nor more prevalent there than in society at large. And the Church certainly doesn’t promote paedophilia, of course.

      But don’t let any of that get in the way of your little smear operation.

  • John Carins

    The Catholic Church’s spokesman O’ Connor has learned nothing. It is typical of his and the Church’s attitude: the war to convert the Protestants must continue; the split from Rome must be rectified. This is pure opportunism and should be ignored. Anyway, both he, the Pope and the RC Church should butt out of Britain’s constitutional future.. His comments will alienate many

    • So you don’t think faith communities have a right to a view on matters of public interest? Who else is excluded from the discussion in your scheme?
      Meanwhile the Pope, unlike Obama, has not offered any advice.

      • John Carins

        The issue of whether we stay in the EU or not has absolutely nothing to do with faith communities.

        • johnb1945

          ?

          They get to vote on the issue, or?

  • Jingleballix

    Hmmm………the Catholic church’s record on European harmony is not too inspiring is it?

    Always meddling in politics, and concomitantly pushing countries to war………the very worst of which was the 30yrs War which decimated a huge swathe of the continent.

    If it’s all the same to you Cardinal………we’ll forego your advice.

    • JabbaPapa

      the very worst of which was the 30yrs War which

      … was started by Protestants who wanted to destroy the Church.

      • Jingleballix

        Nope, as I recall…….Ferdinand II, the Holy Roman Emperor was a radical Catholic and instigated measures to impose Catholicism on the Protestant states of Bohemia, northern Germany and Poland (?), so they formed the Protestant Union……

        ……..against the Catholic League……..push came to shove, then the Dutch, Swedish and Spanish joined in…….hey presto! Devastation.

        • JabbaPapa

          I see — so you think that the agitation of the Protestant nobility and their acts of rebellion against the existing Authority were somehow “provoked” by later events ? Amazing. Did they use their TARDIS ?

          Equally amazing is your story how the Protestant Union, founded in 1608, was constituted against the Catholic Union, founded in 1609 !!!

          • Jingleballix

            I said that Ferdinand II was the prime culprit……….

            https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BOtaReT1eAc

            Doesn’t matter whenever the PU and CL were formed, Ferdinand wanted to re-impose Catholicism in Protestant states, and as you see, he started flexing his muscles in the 1590s.

            Besides, my main point is that the Catholic church has continuously fomented disharmony whenever it felt it was challenged……….why could it not accept Protestantism? Why could it not accept change?

            Martin Luther wasn’t the first……….Wycliffe and followers of Lollardy had been demanding a simpler form of worship in their own language 150yrs before Luther…..why did not the Catholic Church allow men to worship in their own way as Christians??

            Wycliffe died a natural death…….but 20-odd years later, as his philosophy took hold, his bones were dug up, he was declared a heretic and they were burned.

            Why? Money, power, influence and control……….same as Brussels today.

            The Pope, Phillip II, Napoleon, Kaiser, Hitler, Stalin……..Juncker…….pretty much all the same; egotistical, greedy control freaks, all jealous of Britain and all opponents of freedom…….

            As for Britain, we really are a much, much better country than we give ourselves credit for…….we can easily make it on our own.

            The Brits have been resisting European dictatorship for a very long time – let’s make another stand next month, and start the ball rolling………the dismantling of the wicked EU.

          • JabbaPapa

            And never mind jolly old Friedrich V’s attempted coup d’état, eh ?

          • Jingleballix

            Coup?

            You mean resisting the ‘authority’ of Rome?

            I suppose us Brexiters have something in common with him.

          • JabbaPapa

            In what way was opportunistically seizing power in Bohemia a “resistance” ???

            You carry on pretending that causes are consequences, as a means to support your false narrative about who started that conflict.

          • Jingleballix

            It’s the duty of men of all nations to resist subjugation – especially if the holder of authority over him is cruel, unjust, corrupt and/or incompetent.

          • JabbaPapa

            How exactly was 17th Century Bohemia under the “subjection” of Rome ???

            Frankly, you’re just making stuff up as you go along, with the sole apparent motive that if it’s hostile to Catholicism, then it must be “the truth”.

            Which is objectively irrational.

            The reality is that the whole conflict was started by fanatical Calvinists in the 1560s.

          • Jingleballix

            What horsesh1t………the Catholic Church dictated to Christians since the Papacy was established.

            ‘It’ didn’t start with Calvinists………I told you, ‘it’ actually started with the Black Death – pious priests and church people helped the suffering, but died in huge numbers 1345-52…….but Rome still wanted its money, and the dead were replaced by imposters, charlatans and thieves (see The Prologue to The Canterbury Tales). Meanwhile, having endured such slaughter, the people ‘wised up’ and demanded more from their church i.e. services of more simple nature, in their own language.

            This is where the Reformation originated…….Wycliffe and Lollards, and later, with the advent of printing, an English Bible (Tyndale et al).

            People began to throw off their obeisance to Rome.

            TELL ME……….YOU DIDN’T ANSWER THE QUESTION……..WHY DID ROME NOT ‘SET THEM FREE’ TO WORSHIP IN THEIR OWN LANGUAGE?

            THAT’S WHAT IT’S ALL ABOUT………..FREEDOM.

          • JabbaPapa

            Did you confuse Calvinist propaganda and lies with reality ?

          • Jingleballix

            Didn’t answer the question (again)………..why did not Rome tolerate the ‘break’? After all, Christianity is about tolerance and understanding of other views.

            Speak up………..

          • JabbaPapa

            Didn’t answer the question (again)

            You also appear not to understand the meaning of the word “again”.

            Exactly which part of “propaganda and lies” did you fail to understand as an answer to your question BTW ?

          • ardenjm

            “After all, Christianity is about tolerance and understanding of other views.”
            Christianity is about Christ.
            Christ is the Way the Truth and the Life.
            Erasmus – arch critic of abuses in the Church – nevertheless deplored the unleashing of untramelled fanaticism that was brought in by the Reformers. Why, Luther himself, deplored it when the fanaticism of the Anabaptists no longer agreed with his own. Hence his request to the princes to stab, smite and slay as many rebellious peasants as the princes could.

            In such circumstances, singing on a hill top with a Coke bottle saying Christianity would like to teach the world to sing in perfect harmony is foolish, effete twaddle. Moreover, I suspect it belies a kind of pseudo-messianism that is skulking behind your view: that Christianity should be an agent of the universal order of peace and well-being and harmony and that any belief, any love of Christ that fails to measure up to THAT has to be jettisoned.
            The Church – which is Christ’s – can not sign up to that.
            And in that respect, resisting those forces that tear at the unity of the Church, like the Protestant reformation, becomes a duty. How could Rome tolerate it? It’s like asking Unionists to tolerate the dismemberment of the United Kingdom when one country not only unilaterally declares independence but starts causing strife against those nearby who want to remain in the Union. Of course the centre of the Union will react – vigorously. That centre was Rome. The United Kingdom was the Church. The Protestants were Salmond and Sturgeon et al.
            .

      • johnb1945

        It takes 2 to tango, besides, few wars happen for purely sectarian reasons. The Holy Roman empire was a cocktail of economic hardship and competing states held together under a despotic Habsburg dynasty.

        Religion was an accelerant and sustainer, but not “the cause”.

  • James Chilton

    I’m not a Catholic. Even if I were, no religious consideration would influence my decision in the referendum one way or the other. What’s at stake is the recovery of full sovereignty.

    Reform and renewal of the EU is a pipedream because so many conflicts of interest have to be reconciled. Brexit is a lifeboat which will save us before the Titanic goes down.

  • Colin

    At what point do we stop treating these clergy men as reverend, and, start treating them as nothing more than lefty political hacks?

    • Foxall

      Please let him carry on. Given that we have as much say in the EU as we do in the Eurovision Song Contest, the good father has made a compelling case for us to Leave.

      • John

        Spot on. It’s a bit like getting an endorsement from Tony Blair !

      • 100

        im sure that most of the Catholic Bishops across Europe are glued to Euro vision, its right up their alley.

    • JJD

      You don’t have to treat him as anything. Pigeon-holing the author is pointless and irrelevant to the points made.

  • John

    It is not necessary to be in the EU to “cooperate” with other European neighbours. Should a cardinal be using his public position to attempt to influence the political trajectory of Catholic voters ? As a Catholic myself, the answer to that is a very firm “no”.
    Oh , and BTW , I will be voting OUT !!
    Mind how you go !

    • licjjs

      I could not agree more – and I too am a Catholic.

    • JJD

      He’s entitled to put his view across, and he’s careful to say many Catholics will disagree. He encourages people to think. I’ve no beef with him on that front. It would be a problem if he was calling on Catholics to be “loyal” and vote in a certain way, but I don’t see him doing that. Catholic too, BTW.

      • 100

        It isnt his view though is it, views of this magnatude would require consultation back to the Holy Sea.
        I am sure that this dictum has come down from Rome, it has Comrade Franco all over it. (Trying to influence the vote by proxy but not wanting to get burned after his attempt on the Trump issue)

        • JJD

          The Holy Sea. Ha.

    • 100

      I am sure that this dictum has come down from Rome, it has Comrade Franco all over it.

  • JJD

    To be fair to the Cardinal-emeritus, he shows some evidence of having thought about the matter. He’s not just going for blind scare-stories, he’s looking at the deeper issues, and he’s acknowledging both sides of the argument. If only politicians and MSM followed his example in this.

    The argument seems to be that Europe can reform, and we should stick around to help it do so. I feel that this position evinces a little too much of the optimism-verging-on-naivety which we have come to associate with official Christian spokesmen these days (including Pope Francis; and I say that as a Catholic myself).

    Cardinal Murphy-O’Connor, in my opinion, makes the mistake of judging the EU by its aims and intentions, as opposed to actual results. The intentions of the EU’s “founding fathers” (ah, the vanity!) are, when all is said and done, irrelevant. Let us be generous and assume they had good intentions. The relevant question is whether or not they put the right structures in place to achieve those intentions. The relevant question is about outcomes, not intentions.

    O’Connor seems to accept that, so far, the outcomes have not been good. But stick around for a bit, he encourages us, and that will hopefully change. But there comes a point where optimism tips over into dogmatism. Where is the evidence that the EU is capable of genuine reform in the direction the pope seems to want? The paltry “deal” secured by David Cameron shows us that the EU has no desire to reform itself. Indeed, the EU plans to entrench the principle of integration – both economic and political – still further. All the evidence, therefore, points the other way. The EU has no desire to reform; it will not reform; it will continue down its chosen path until events either force it to change or bring it crashing to the ground.

    If the EU really was what Murphy-O’Connor wants to believe, perhaps I would think again about Brexit. But it patently isn’t. And since his claim that the EU is a guarantor of peace also seems to me rather spurious (looking at the way Greek-German and Italian-German relations have gone recently), I still think we should leave. But I do appreciate his intervention. He’s entitled to speak, and has done so in a measured and intelligent way. I think that should be welcomed by all sides.

    • JabbaPapa

      Unless and until the EU reforms its electoral system, and introduces some actual democracy and popular accountability in its methods for selecting its internal leadership, all talk of reform is just hot air.

      • JJD

        Absolutely. The “founding fathers” were not democrats at heart, though: the masses had elected Hitler, after all! Enlightened oligarchy was the way to go, apparently. Still is.

      • johnb1945

        I don’t think that’s possible without creating a federal Europe, so the way to go is to hand powers back to constituent parliaments.

        Europe has overreached, its problem is that a self serving elite wish to keep it that way.

    • Kennybhoy
      • JJD

        Ah yes, I remember that. I didn’t catch Farage’s comments, though. It was an interesting speech, although it did leave me with the same feeling I get from most of Pope Francis’s speeches and writings: what, really, precisely, are you trying to say?

        • Kennybhoy

          Aye. 🙂

  • licjjs

    Cardinal Murphy-O’Connor, could we please have Ascension Day put back to the day on which it has been kept (before the English RC clergy got there hands on it) since the 5th century – that is, today? This would certainly put us more in tune with most countries in the EU.

    • JJD

      Happy feast day from Scotland!

      • licjjs

        Thanks! I am having a cream cake in celebration anyway.

    • Jackthesmilingblack

      Murphy-O’Connor
      Now would that be an Irish name?

    • Jacobi

      It wasn’t the English clergy that did that. it was Rome and Gregory. The alternative was the obscure Irish tradition.
      Now I ask you??

      • JabbaPapa

        Don’t you mean “the Protestants removed it as a public holiday because it was contrary to their dogma” ?

        • Jacobi

          Do Protestants have dogma?

          • JabbaPapa

            Obviously so.

      • licjjs

        I think you have misunderstood what I am talking about here. Ascension Thursday was kept by English Roman Catholics, joining with the rest of the Church where the feast had been kept on this day since the fifth century, until Cardinal Murphy-O’Connor changed it as Archbishop of Westminster. This was mainly – solely? – at the instigation of members of the clergy. In fact Cardinal Hume had asked people to write in with their views on the matter and concluded that the people wanted to retain the traditional date. No sooner was he in his grave than it was all changed anyway – with no consultation this time.

        The ‘obscure Irish tradition’ as you call it gave us the land of saints and scholars and helped preserve the faith in Europe during the ‘dark ages’ – St Gall, St Columbanus…. – at the same time preserving the classics like the writings of Cicero. It was very, very far from being ‘obscure’.

        • Jacobi

          My apologies if I misunderstood . Ascension Thursday in Scotland was yesterday, but whether that was coincidence I can’t say.

          In E & W I think it is now on the nearest Sunday and that is just pure laziness.

          The Irish tradition referred to you must remember came from Roman Britain. Patrick was a Brit from Ystraclyd, either Dumbarton or perhaps Kendal or maybe even Wales ?

          He is believed to have introduced Catholicism to Ireland circa 460 and so Columbus would have taken much from Patrick .

          The fact remains that Catholicism on the mainland and the Ionian “Irish” customs differed . It was Gregory who decided to sort things out and we Brits, and in-coming Angles accepted that at Whitby

          • licjjs

            Well we cannot go into the whole of history here but St Palladius was sent to help the believers in Christ in Ireland – St Patrick was not first. it was actually Augustine who could not bear that the Irish Bishops would not bow to him and who insulted the Celtic bishops. England was virtually a pagan country when Augustine came – in the 7th century! Gregory warned him that the Church would only be enriched by different cultures. The history of those times is very complicated and can bear years of study, but don’t knock the Celtic Church to which the whole of Europe looked in its heyday and in among all this, let’s not forget St Ninian who preceded them all, a friend of St Martin of Tours.

          • Jacobi

            I come from the position that Britain, by the time the Legions were withdrawn in the 5th century never to return, was Catholic.

            It was of course still tribal, but Catholicism was accepted up to and into the Northern” Pictish” areas, except possibly for in-coming Germanic mercenary
            tribes who settled on parts of the East and Southern coasts. They however soon accepted Christianity. After all only 69 years, later a rough crude Saxon King of Northumbria, which almost certainly extended up to the Forth at that time, was deeply involved in the nicety of the date of Easter.

            The rest of Britain was still crude and rough, but Catholic, something which has been forgotten or put aside by the the later English and Irish schools of thought

            Yes, there probably was some missionaries in Ireland before Patrick but the evidence is ephemeral.

  • Bodkinn

    I am a practicing Catholic plus an extraordinary minister and in matters spiritual I submit to the authority of the hierarchy but as a general rule I think the Church should stay out of secular politics. Bishops mostly do not have the education or the mind-set necessary to offer advice to their people on day to day living in the world of mundane reality. There are of course times when the spiritual and the temporal come into conflict but Brexit is not one of them. The vision of the founding fathers of the EU has long since been abandoned and is irrecoverable. When considering Brexit, we need to keep asking ourselves the question, ‘if we were not already in would we be applying to join’. I think whatever side of the argument you are on honesty must compel you to admit that we would not even consider it. The same wisdom that kept us out of the euro and Schengen as an EU member would be applied from without.

    • JJD

      All in all, he’d have been better not writing. However, what he did write was considered, sane, and not at all spoken from an assumed position of ‘authority’. He didn’t appeal to Catholic loyalty, he didn’t hector, he didn’t scaremonger. So while it would have been better if he had not publicly expressed support for one side over another, it was probably one of the better interventions from a public figure on either side of the debate.

    • Aberrant_Apostrophe

      ‘if we were not already in would we be applying to join’

      Yes. But only if our economy and standards of living were at the same level as those of the six or seven countries hoping to join the EU in the next decade or two.

      • 100

        which is why the EU will fail since it is a political fiasco made up of many states that suck out rather than contribute in to the project and they are there purely because Brussels & Germany want a political expansion, notably towards the Russian Federation and to hades with the economics.

        Had it been economics alone Greece would have had the boot a long time ago, shortly followed by Portugal and almost all of the V4.

    • Stan Getback

      Fantastic ground, who can argue with that?

  • LordJustin

    Oh dear. Just as we thought the Holy Roman Empire was dead and buried – at least so far as Protestant Britain was concerned – up pops another turbulent priest campaigning for power for the church, and jobs for the boys.

    • JJD

      Eh? Did you even read the article?

    • Jacobi

      Britain is not Protestant. it is either Secularist or more likely just nothing, which is why it is in such a mess.
      But Islam intends it soon will be Muslim. Now there is something for you to contemplate.

  • Herman_U_Tick

    The monthly newsletter from my Neighbourhood watch group contains this information
    about the latest EU wisdom:

    BeginQuote:
    Jim Maddan OBE, chaiman of NHWN, told Our News: “Currently the Data Protection
    Act 1998 allows for images collected by CCTV installed by homeowners to protect
    their personal property. If perchance images identify individuals caught in the act
    committing crime and anti-social behaviour, then so be it.

    “However in 2013, a case was decided by the Czech Supreme Court Administration
    and the court ruled that evidence obtained by domestic CCTV cameras in this way
    was inadmissible. The ruling was upheld by the EU Information Commissioner’s
    Office and is binding on our own Information Commissioner.
    EndQuote.

    Well; czech your (lack of) privilege, as they don’t say.

  • Jackthesmilingblack

    Test

  • Sandy_Jamieson

    time to look our my Orange Sash I think

  • Frank

    A vote for Brexit shows that you have the confidence to renew Britain and the whole of Europe!
    This article is deficient in logic and argument, and could have been written by a ten year old girl. I seriously hope that Bishops do not have the vote.

    • Mary Ann

      A vote for brexit shows you want to run away and pull up the drawbridge.

      • JJD

        Run away where? From what? What drawbridge? What are you talking about?

      • Aberrant_Apostrophe

        Not at all. We stay exactly where we are and post a little man at the entrance gate.

  • Susanna

    Let us not forget that the original treaty that kicked off this European Federal Superstate project is called

    ‘ The Treaty of Rome ‘ – which is the political arm of the very powerful and very wealthy Catholic church.

    It is, essentially, a resurgence, or revival , of the old but still ticking Roman Empire.

    Indeed, the founding fathers of the EU and all the present leaders see themselves as the rightful heirs to Ceasar’s throne and are determined to resurrect the ‘ Empire ‘ in order to rule over the coming New World Order as its government.

    And also remember that with a one-world-government – comes a one-world religion – Chrislam !

    • JabbaPapa

      ‘ The Treaty of Rome ‘ – which is the political arm of the very powerful and very wealthy Catholic church.

      /face-palm/

    • styants64

      Both sprung from judaism another apocalyptic death cult all invented to keep the people in their place.

      • JabbaPapa

        Your faith in nutjob conspiracy theories is not commendable.

        • styants64

          History proves me correct millions of deaths and torchred in the name of the “chosen” people’s control freak God, Jesus told the “chosen ones” they were wide of the mark and look at what they did with him.

          • JabbaPapa

            If you’ve been taught that as “history”, you should sue your school for damages.

            It is propaganda — and what on EARTH does this revisionist anticlerical 19th century nonsense have to do with the EU, the Roman Empire, the “New World Order”, “Chrislam”, or any other of that gibberish you heartily approved of and agreed with ?

          • styants64

            Classical Rome contributed largely to the foundations of western civilisation, the Americans have the Senate and the Eagle Hitler was called Fuher German for Caesar The Nazis used the Eagle and laurel leaf straight from classical Rome The Russian Czar another term for Caesar, no sooner Christianity became entrenched the Christian church of Saint Peter- The Church of Rome went on a subjugation and murder spree no wonder Jesus condemned hierarchical religion.

          • JabbaPapa

            a subjugation and murder spree

            That’s Islam, not Christianity.

          • styants64

            The Spanish Inquisition the oppression of the Jews the crusades the inter doctrinal -protestant versus Catholic et cetera wars like in Ireland and in England after the Reformation witch burning the annihilation of the Aztecs, The Catholic church oppression of other breakaway Christian groups, the chisam between The Russian Orthodox church and Catholic Rome the pongroms against Jews in Russia and orthodox Eastern European states the list goes on and on.

          • JabbaPapa

            The Inquisitions, including the Spanish one, were Courts of Church Law, which gave the accused presumption of innocence, right to self-defense, found the majority of them not guilty, gave the vast majority of the guilty some trivial sentences that were BTW often subject to a pardon, and they were also the direct model of the modern Western system of Court Justice.

            The Crusades were efforts to defend Christians from Muslim aggression, oppression, mass murdering, and genocide

            Ireland was the theatre of Cromwell’s brutally genocidal campaign to destroy the Catholic Church there, during the course of which he had hundreds of thousands killed

            The Aztecs actually did have a brutal death cult religion, founded upon abject slavery and human sacrifices – actual subjugation and murder in other words, not your made-up imaginary variety

            WHAT on EARTH does the Great Schism between the Catholic and Orthodox Churches have to do with any of this ?

            The other “breakaway groups” attempted variously to destroy the Church by means of forced conversions, warfare, ISIS-like tactics of fundamentalist extremism etc.

            Actions against Jews have in their vast majority been motivated politically or on secular racist grounds, and the Church is only historically involved in cases of Jews pretending to convert to Christianity in order to gain access to benefits from the Church

            The list of atheist & protestant lies and fabrications about all of these things and others does indeed go on and on …

          • johnb1945

            How.. could the Aztecs possibly have had such a thing? I thought Christianity, Separation of Powers and Democratic Nation States were all just the result of innate human ethics? Our ancestors passing the peace pipe around the fire and deciding “let’s not be a-seh-les to each other” and then there was democracy?

            How could the Aztec possibly have been different?

            Poor orthodox liberal that I am …..

          • JabbaPapa

            The “innocent” “noble savage” is a lie that continues to be perpetuated to this very day.

            Did some translation work on a documentary once, about a tribe of opium growing and smuggling brutal organised criminal killers, who were lovingly and deliberately presented by the director as a group of peace-lovers oppressed by the “evil” local government.

          • johnb1945

            Some of the more intelligent ones actively cultivate this image. That is exactly how Pablo Escobar got away with it for so many years, and exactly why 5,000 people attended his funeral. “Un Robin Hood Paisa”

          • Jacobi

            I see you have been studying your post-Reformation Protestant and Secular history books.
            Now what do they say about the present left-wing Secularist anti-Jewish forces that are at work at today?

    • trobrianders

      Jean-Claude Juncker, Catholic
      Frans Timmermanns, Catholic
      Manuel Barosso, Catholic
      Herman Van Rompuy, Catholic
      Sgt Schulz, Catholic
      Donald Tusk, Catholic
      Francois Hollande, Catholic
      Werner Faymann, Catholic
      Bohuslav Sobotka, Catholic
      Dalia Grybauskaite, Catholic
      Enda Kenny, Catholic
      Matteo Renzi, Catholic
      Joseph Muscat, Catholic
      Beata Szdylo, Catholic
      Antonio Costa, Catholic
      Miro Cerer, Catholic
      Mariano Rajoy Bray, Catholic
      Nicholas Sarkozy, Catholic
      Tony Blair, Catholic
      Christine Lagarde, Catholic
      Frederica Mogherini, Catholic

      • Mary Ann

        It’s hardly surprising there are so many Catholics, most of Europe is Catholic. You would be very upset if there were any Muslims, This country was Catholic until Henry VIII fancied Anne Boleyn. Next you will try and convince us that the EU is going to force us all to be Catholic.

        • trobrianders

          Are you suggesting some facts are OK to know and others aren’t? I posted a list., that’s all. No need to be so defensive.

        • Aberrant_Apostrophe

          Don’t give ’em ideas, Mary Ann. Anyway, it would be pointless since Europe will be overrun by Muslims by 2050. Allahu Akbar!

      • Raphael Hythlodeu

        I think the “Catholicity” of most of those people in the list is questionable.

        • trobrianders

          It’s ingrained. It doesn’t need to be out on display.

          • Raphael Hythlodeu

            You may be surprised to discover that most of them are more jacobite than catholic.

          • pobjoy

            Criminals, eh.

        • antoncheckout

          Yes, that’s was I was thinking as I read through that list. Certainly the more recent examples are mainly ‘c’atholics (with a small c) of the a la carte, eezy-conscience, ‘Catechism? What’s a Catechism?’ school.

    • A_Londoner

      When the people realise that they are slowly losing the right to sack the Federal European Government, it is the people’s right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government.

    • johnb1945

      Yes. Any other slaps and kicks you’d like to insult our intelligence with?

  • Otto Norbert Gaffey

    Geez, the impertinence of the man! I think the RC church should sort out its own [considerable] problems and leave to Caesar …..

    • styants64

      The Church of Rome and the Treaty of Rome= EU both the same tyrannical control freaks.

    • Mary Ann

      Anyone who thinks that Britain is better off in Europe should shut up, just about sums it up.

      • Conway

        Britain is fine in Europe – it’s in the EU where the problems start.

        • sebastian2

          An important distinction.

  • Mary Ann

    Rupert Murdoch

    “When I go into Downing Street they do what I say; when I go to Brussels they take no notice.”

    • trobrianders

      Keep flogging a decrepit tortoise.

    • Conway

      You’d rather have a German running the country?

    • Terry Mushroom

      Started off as an Aussie. He’s now a US citizen.

      You’ve mentioned Aussies not liking Poms before. We like Poms. Maybe it’s you that’s the problem.

  • gerronwithit

    If, like the Muslims of today, the Catholic had got its own way at the Reformation we would still be believing in a flat earth with creationism as the focal point of our beliefs, and women very second class citizens. Carry on as we are in Europe under the kleptocracy of the EU at the moment we will be heading straight back to the Middle Ages, no question.

    • Jacobi

      Wrong

      Any seaman who sees a ship disappear over the horizon knows the earth is curved and
      probably round. Always has been so.

      The Reformation was from 1517. Copernicus declared the earth round in 1473. Columbus
      “discovered “ South American in 1492 while trying to sail round to India, but he knew this from fellow seamen who traded regularly with the the Azores, first chart 1351, and before that from the Irish and of course Norse wayfarers. That America was there and that the earth was probably round known to them and certainly to the early Church.

      The reason Galileo got such a bollocking was that he couldn’t keep his big mouth shut and
      was judged to be upsetting some people who still believed otherwise, including some prominent lay thinkers. The Church did not think it flat, which is why Copernicus and incidently Columbus who could keep their mouths suitably shut were left alone.

      • Aberrant_Apostrophe

        “Any seaman who sees a ship disappear over the horizon knows the earth is curved and probably round. Always has been so.”

        That is the modern explanation. Well at least, as you say, from the 14th Century onwards. However, there was no reason to exclude other possibilities, such as the refraction of light – which was known about from mirages – without other supporting evidence, such as the curved shape of the Earth on the Moon during a lunar eclipse. The difficulty of the round Earth theory was that its proponents couldn’t explain why people didn’t fall off the planet if they were on the other side. It was only the ‘discovery’ of Gravity by Newton in the 17th Century that provided a complete and consistent theory. Incidentally, the curved nature of the Earth’s surface was know in around 200 BC, when Eratosthenes estimated the Earth’s diameter using geometrical techniques.

        • Jacobi

          I am, sorry have been!, a sailor/yachtsman. Mirages come and go. Boats always disappear over the horizon.
          That people didn’t fall off would have puzzled me also, but in no way would it have contradicted the evidence that they did not. When Newton came up with his theory ( as well as no doubt many other thinking along the same lines ), I would have kicked my self for not seeing the obvious.

          • JabbaPapa

            By the time Newton discovered his theory, the shape of the Earth had been common knowledge for centuries.

            The theory of universal attraction is BTW the exact opposite of “obvious”, just saying.

        • JabbaPapa

          the curved shape of the Earth on the Moon during a lunar eclipse

          Invisible (due to refraction) prior to the invention of the telescope in 1608, over 15 years after Columbus’ first journey to the Americas, which had been entirely predicated on the roundness of the Earth.

    • JabbaPapa

      The amount of ignorant bollocks that’s been posted in this thread is enormous

      • 100

        and you are the cherry on the top

      • Thetruth73

        It really is JabbaPapa, Cannot believe the total ignorance. gerronwithit is more like gerronwithoutit.. The Venerable Bede for instance was one of the first of many Catholics who proposed the Earth was round. Women have never been second class citizens in the Catholic Church.

      • Sanctimony

        And you are a major contributor !

  • Chingford Man

    The Papacy has long supported the political unification of Europe, see Adrian Hilton’s book on the subject that ended any prospect of Hilton standing for Parliament as a Tory. When Ian Paisley famously denounced the Pope as the Antichrist in Strasbourg, it was during a political speech by John Paul II, not a religious one.

  • Jacobi

    Your Grace,

    Careful! Since before the French Revolution? We Catholics conveniently forgot about the Orthodox nations for so long?

    But you are right in that Catholics and incidently Secularists, we must not forget about them, should be for Europe (and the E U ) and what it stands for.

    Technical reasoning and Catholic reasoning are the same. Both are based on reason. As a retired scientist I can tell you that there is no clash between Catholicism and the Enlightenment.

    Ultimately, or more likely, in the next 10/20 years, Europe (and the EU ) will have to choose. A Christian-based Europe ( and EU ), or a Moslem one. Islam will see to that.

    The Turks will probably not get into Europe whatever Mrs Merkel wishes. The Bulgars and Hungarians and Poles etc. will see to that..

    So yes, let’s all stay in Europe ( and the E U )!

    • JJD

      As a retired scientist, what special qualifications do you have to pronounce on the harmony between Catholicism and the Enlightenment? Surely theology and philosophy would be more relevant areas of expertise? Catholicism is a religion, after all; and the Enlightenment was a philosophical/cultural movement, not a narrowly scientific one.

      • Jacobi

        Quite simple.
        Have been trained in the logic of Resurrection and also in the logic of the scientific method. No clash or disharmony.
        Theology and philosophy are well whatever you want them to be. Try common sense if your ogies fail you!

        • JJD

          The Enlightenment was a complex cultural movement, which can’t easily be defined. But some of its characteristics were indeed in conflict with Catholic faith. Among other things, Enlightenment figures frequently (a) proclaimed the natural perfectibility of man (b) asserted the sufficiency of human reason and (c) reduced religion to an alleged moral/rational core. On all three counts, it stands in opposition to the Catholic faith. There is a clash between Catholicism and the Enlightenment. But not necessarily between Catholicism and scientific method.

          • JabbaPapa

            Not at all, rather than “not necessarily”.

          • JJD

            True. The tensions arise from certain (mis)applications of scientific method, or from misunderstandings as to what scientific method (or indeed Catholicism) is.

          • Jacobi

            It probably did suggest (a) and (b), ( contrary to Fallen Human Nature ) these two are yet again to be rubbish given the appalling things humans have done to each other since.
            But underlying it was the concept that logic was ultimate. Now that is and always has been the Catholic approach.

          • JJD

            I don’t think that’s quite right, Jacobi. The Catholic approach isn’t that logic is ultimate. The Enlightenment thinkers believed that logic and reason trumped faith, while the Protestants thought faith trumps logic and reason. The Catholic position is in the middle. Faith is a gift, and provides its own (ultimate) justification; but it never conflicts with logic or reason, which are, after all, gifts from the same God.

          • Jacobi

            I agree that faith is a gift, but without logic it is ephemeral. Faith does not and cannot trump logic or reason. That is absurd.

            The Catholic position never conflicts with, and indeed as it holds to Truth, cannot conflict with, logic or reason.

            I do not think we are disagreeing. You’re not one of those Catholics are you?

          • JJD

            No. I can pick my battles. And you’re right: this one is not worth pursuing any further. See you around.

  • Raphael Hythlodeu

    I think that Your Lordship is ignoring the fact that all key positions in the EU are appointed and not elected.

    Furthermore, the EU is in effect anti-democratic because the European Commission has the “right of initiative” – the monopoly of power to propose new legislation.

    As blogger Ben Kelly has explained in his blog (two links bellow) the EU due to its supranational character, works as a pre-modern empire of yore, where a court (European Commission) rules, unchallenged, over its multiple realms, which are not equal among each other. Indeed in the spirit of Babylon.

    https://thescepticisle.com/2016/01/27/the-supranational-root-of-the-eu-problem/

    https://thescepticisle.com/2016/04/14/the-eu-is-not-a-democracy-and-it-never-will-be/

    Fortunately, since the EU ratified the WTO Agreement on Technical Barriers to Trade, it

  • milford

    If the Catholic Church was any good it would stop taking cash from the poor. It’s enormous wealth, a wealth that dwarfs the wealth of any other organisation on the planet, should be confiscated and shared out amongst those communities who’ve been so generous for generations. It’s about time they paid for their own frocks.

    • JabbaPapa

      It’s enormous wealth, a wealth that dwarfs the wealth of any other organisation on the planet

      Oh good GRIEF your ignorance is stunning.

      Vatican City : Budget: revenues: $455.5 million (2008); expenditures: $356.8 million (2008)

      Chelsea Football Club : Revenues: £314.3m (2014-2015); expenditures given £23.1m loss: £337.4m

      United States Armed Forces Budget : $680 billion

      • johnb1945

        Don’t worry Jabba, he’s took a break from baiting the Rothschilds to post that enlightened gem.

      • milford

        You’re not suggesting are you that The Vatican receives all funds donated to the Catholic Church globally are you?

  • Conway

    I love Europe and have friends in many countries there; the EU is doing them no good and it will destroy us if we stay in.

  • A_Londoner

    When a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Objective evinces a design to reduce the people under absolute Autocracy, it is the people’s right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.

    That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of Democratic ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.

  • Tom Cullem

    The EU has shown quite clearly that it isn’t interested in “renewal”, nor does it particularly care what the UK thinks or wants, and, if the UK government were being honest, it would admit that it isn’t interested in EU renewal, either. A large segment of the voters and half the Tory party are angry at the EU – but the UK government, as a whole, has no problem with Britain’s crowding, housing pressures, primary school place shortages, crumbling NHS, fractured cultural framework, rising problems with anti-Semitism helped along by all those nice Muslim migrants the EU is slowly squeezing through Dave’s panto bluffs . . .

    By the way, how is it that the Cardinal isn’t directing his energies toward all that crowding, housing and primary school place pressure, crumbling NHS, and fractured cultural framework?

    And when the EU bares its fangs and its claws after that IN vote prevails, we all look forward to the Cardinal’s expressions of shock and disappointment.

    Only it will be too late.

    • Bonkim

      The Catholic Church and the EU both want a fascist Europe. Both cannot be reformed or renewed.

      • JabbaPapa

        Your inability to learn from past errors, as you instead decide to repeat them, multiple times, in public for all to see, demonstrates quite clearly how much of a moron you are.

        • Bonkim

          An intelligent Heretic – but then Catholics like you live in your own little world. Must ask the Pope to sell me an absolution and nail from Holy Mary I can carry around my neck to ward off evil.

          • JabbaPapa

            I’m not the one living in a tiny make-believe world of grotesque conspiracy theories.

          • Bonkim

            Thanks – the Catholic Church AKA the Holy Roman Empire) has been a make-believe world for 1500 years.

          • greencoat

            So the Holy Roman Empire was a ‘world’ that didn’t exist?

            What have you been smoking?

          • Bonkim

            Hello turncoat – look up your history. The Roman Emperor Constantine converted to Christianity and Rome became the centre of the Christian Church – the Papists from then onward took on the trimmings of the Roman Empire. O.K – that was ~1700 years ago and the technically defined Holy Roman Empire started around 800A.D – but that was a technicality – in that Charlemagne crowned as Holy Roman Emperor – the temporal branch – the Popes were already established in Rome – followed on from the established Roman Empire. Christianity and worldly Empire became one.
            So technically the Holy Roman Empire started in 800A.D but the Roman Church and its worldwide Empire building started ~300A.D and Constantine.

          • JabbaPapa

            It has already been pointed out to you several times in the recent past that this narrative of tours is incompatible with the contents of History.

            Constantine was a death bed convert, and the Church has resisted every attempt to subject her to the power of any State, whether Henry VIII, any Roman Emperors Eastern or Western, any Tsars, Presidents of the Republic, or POTUSes. She condemns such attempts and ideologies as Gallicanism.

            The Catholic Church strictly limits her sphere of influence to matters of Faith and Morals only, and except within the confines of her own sovereignty, including in Vatican City and the various religious Orders, exercises no temporal power as such anywhere, notwithstanding the historic aberration of the Papal States, which were not BTW subjected to any Emperor either.

          • Bonkim

            Look up history of the Crusades and the Inquisition, etc, etc, The Catholic Chuch has accompanied the Conquistadores, missionaries in India and China destroying existing cultures – no different from what ISIS and the Taliban are doing now.

            You better look up history of the Roman Church before lecturing others better than you intellectually.

          • Jack Cade

            Wasn’t it the Catholic clergy who were the main critics of Spanish cruelty during the conquest of Mexico and afterwards?

          • Bonkim

            May be but the Catholic Church indulged in destroying native cultures wherever it went and the colonial government helped them in intimidating the natives. The Popes were no angels.

          • JabbaPapa

            oooh let’s all weep the poor innocent human-sacrificing death cult slave-based native cultures !!!

          • Bonkim

            A comment to be expected from f-in idiot.

          • JabbaPapa

            moron

          • Bonkim

            Calling names will not get you to heaven – write 1000 pages of holy Mary’s or no supper – stupid boy.

          • JabbaPapa

            Your grotesque lies will get you exactly nowhere.

          • Bonkim

            Thanks – you appear to be genuinely concerned about my future. But rest assured I am somewhere, also been there and done that – so happy with where I am.

          • Sanctimony

            Yet more gratuitous abuse

          • JabbaPapa

            You are a midget intellectually, Bonkim.

            You’re the one subjected to mendacious propaganda about the Crusades and Inquisitions, not I.

            Please demonstrate how Indian and Chinese culture have been “destroyed”, you idiot.

          • Bonkim

            You will have to go to locations where the Papal visitations arrived to wreak havoc.

          • Sanctimony

            More abuse

          • Sanctimony

            There’s a great shop in the Vatican selling plenary indulgences and relics of Christ’s cross etc… there’s even the supposed sole of one of Benedict XVI’s Jimmy Choo scarlet slippers…

          • Bonkim

            Thanks – sill also look up on eBay

        • Sanctimony

          Unnecessary and gratuitous abuse…

  • Jojje 3000

    A very good idéa to work the EU from within as it won’t go away. The EU will be there across the channel and affect Britain no matter what, you really can’t do much about that fact.

    • Jacobi

      Quite right. Have always advocated the Wellington approach. Stay in there and sort the, eh, sort them out!

      • antoncheckout

        After the new QMV rules, we now have 8% of the vote and shrinking with every new accession. We are constantly – and increasingly – outvoted and sidelined, our laws challenged by ‘commissioners’ and ‘jurists’ who are activist political placemen.
        This is not pooling sovereignty, it’s watering it down to the homeopathic level of a faint memory of sovereignty.

  • Bodkinn

    As someone who has served on many committees both religious and secular I can say that as a lone voice you are almost entirely ineffectual no matter how charismatic you think you are. For this reason, I reject the idea that we are better in the EU exerting minimal influence than without doing our own thing. I am certain that for all the times this country has been as odds with a majority of the others in the EU we might as well not have bothered to turn up and as more countries join this will get worse. Let us keep all of our money rather than giving a large amount away only to get a percentage back and to be told how we can spend it.

  • pobjoy

    Cave. Catholics got emancipation by threat of violence.

    • greencoat

      Oh yes, that vast army of nuns with shotguns under their beds, ready to March on London at a moment’s notice.

      Copyright: The ‘Reverend’ I. Paisley.

      • pobjoy

        Catholic intelligence and honesty. No wonder they lived in hovels before they were rescued.

  • David Waters

    Mr Cormac Murphy-O’Connor belongs to a failing, undemocratic. wasteful and corrupt church. You can see why he’s at home in the EU.

    • 100

      They also like a constant flow of little ethnic boys for their out of hours activities.

      • Sanctimony

        A lot of those catamites were used up by the Catholic clergy of the Boston and Massachusetts dioceses… about 250 culpable priests according to that splendid book Betrayal…. and the man who covered up the scandal, Cardinal Law, now skulks in a splendid palazzo in the Vatican… No extradition…. he should be eating porridge in Alcatraz…

        • mahatmacoatmabag

          Sanctimony, if you are interested in posting on a Brexit forum with old pals from the DT check out this link
          https://disqus.com/home/channel/notthetelegraphletters/

          • Sanctimony

            See above…

        • greencoat

          Surely it was 2,500 priests. No – surely 25,000. Any advance?

          • pobjoy

            How many would it take before Catholics faced the truth?

      • JabbaPapa

        Whate a vile, vicious little piece of nastiness.

        • 100

          arent they all

          • JabbaPapa

            Your hatred is simply appalling.

          • 100

            your support for paedophiles is worrying and should be a cause for concern of the authorities.

          • greencoat

            Be careful, now. The BBC led the ‘paedophile’ onslaught against the Catholic Church and was rapidly hoist by its own lying petard.

          • pobjoy

            The BBC was an outpost of the Vatican. Still is, probably.

          • JabbaPapa

            aaaah pobjoy’s back in with his nutcase theories again …

          • 100

            Excusing peadoes was their downfall and it might be yours. And further i would warn you to be careful with your words. I can arrange pretty swiftly for a search of your premises.you need to be aware of who you are comunicating with. My advice to you wouldbe to quietly shut upand drift away.. Ykwim

          • JabbaPapa

            100 — does that refer to the number of lies you’ve decided to tell during each Disqus session ?

          • 100

            Pappa can you hear me???? No no one cares arsehole

          • JabbaPapa

            Moron.

          • Sanctimony

            Vache ….

        • Sanctimony

          Mais vrai… non ?

    • Sanctimony

      The Irish clergy have almost transformed that wonderful country into a secular state… thanks to the utterly revolting behaviour of so many Catholic priests and nuns over the years….

      Take time out to watch the films: The Magdalen Sisters or the Oscar-winning Spotlight. Then read the excellent book Betrayal on the same subject….

      These are but three exposures of the Catholic Church and its behaviour.

      • samton909

        Unfortunately for those of low intellectual value who get their facts and history from movies, the MacAleese report on the Magdalene Laundries found that the allegations were basically bogus

        “In the Irish mind, and in the minds of everyone else who has seen or read one of the many films, plays and books about the Magdalene laundries, these were horrific institutions brimming with violence and overseen by sadistic, pervy nuns. Yet the McAleese Report found not a single incident of sexual abuse by a nun in a Magdalene laundry. Not one. Also, the vast majority of its interviewees said they were never physically punished in the laundries. As one woman said, “It has shocked me to read in papers that we were beat and our heads shaved and that we were badly treated by the nuns… I was not touched by any nun and I never saw anyone touched.” The small number of cases of corporal punishment reported to McAleese consisted of the kind of thing that happened in many normal schools in the 1960s, 70s and 80s: being caned on the legs or rapped on the knuckles. The authors of the McAleese Report, having like the rest of us imbibed the popular image of the Magdalene laundries as nun-run concentration camps, seem to have been taken aback by “the number of women who spoke positively about the nuns”.

        As for the movie Spotlight, isn’t it interesting that they did not even mention the effect the unusually large number of homosexuals in the Boston area priesthood had on this particular scandal? Of course, the very purpose of propaganda is to turn away from the full truth and focus on creating a supposedly evil scapegoat – so as propaganda, I suppose the movie was successful. But any twit with a brain knows what was going on in Boston. The supposedly “brave reporters” who keep clapping themselves on the back, telling each other how “brave” they are, weren’t so brave as to tell the whole story.

        • JabbaPapa

          As for the movie Spotlight, isn’t it interesting that they did not even mention the effect the unusually large number of homosexuals in the Boston area priesthood had on this particular scandal?

          It’s the most central flaw of an otherwise quite good film.

          Another central flaw is its failure to accurately portray with sufficiency the great repulsion of ordinary Catholics against these satanic betrayals.

    • samton909

      And you belong to failing, undemocratic wasteful and corrupt country. What else is new?

  • Bonkim

    Most Catholics are for ‘in’

    You would expect the Pope and the Catholic Church to promote the ‘in’ crusade.

    • antoncheckout

      Most British Catholics I have discussed it with say they will vote to leave.

      • Bonkim

        The rest did 500 years back.

        • Sanctimony

          Neat !

          • greencoat

            Eh?

          • Sanctimony

            A reflection that almost all the British population preferred to follow the decision of Henry VIII, rather than pay any further lip service to Clement VII, the puppet Pope of the infamous Medici dynasty…

    • 100

      source?? evidence??

      • Bonkim

        Source – self – evidence email to – Truth@God.Com

        • 100

          do share?

        • 100

          You should change your name by deed poll to Barking

        • 100

          you mean you weren’t copied in on the email oh dear, you appear to be out of his loop.
          All those Hail Mary’s and still you’ve been banished.

          Better up the ante

    • Sanctimony

      Well, I’m not… but then I’m excommunicated… and reading this stupid old fart’s article I’m not unhappy about that !

  • Raphael Hythlodeu

    Someone decided to mark my post as spam so I’ll repost it again:

    I think that Your Lordship is ignoring the fact that all key positions in the EU are appointed and not elected.
    Furthermore, the EU is in effect anti-democratic because the European Commission has the “right of initiative” – the monopoly of power to propose new legislation.

    As blogger Ben Kelly has explained in his blog (two links bellow) that the EU due to its supranational character, works as a pre-modern empire of yore, where a court (European Commission) rules, unchallenged, over its multiple realms, which are not equal among each other. Indeed in the spirit of Babylon.

    https://thescepticisle.com/2016/01/27/the-supranational-root-of-the-eu-problem/

    https://thescepticisle.com/2016/04/14/the-eu-is-not-a-democracy-and-it-never-will-be/

    Fortunately, since the EU ratified the WTO Agreement on Technical Barriers to Trade, it has relinquished control over the rule making for the single market – which in truth is the European Economic Area (EEA).

    If Britain leaves for EEA, she would be in a position to reconfigure the single market (EEA) into a community of equals under the Geneva-based United Nations Economic Community Europe (UNECE). Indeed in the spirit of Pentecost.

    For more detail check these two links:

    http://leavehq.com/blogview.aspx?blogno=199

    http://leavehq.com/blogview.aspx?blogno=165

    In conclusion, Britain has two options:

    1. Remains in the “ever closer union” of the EU, with its supranational political apparatus, no democracy, and no equality among its peoples – Spirit of Babylon.

    or

    2. Leaves for the EEA and creates a genuine single market under UNECE, where nations meet intergovernamentally to cooperate to solve their common problems, where nation-state democracy is respected, and nations are treated as equals – Spirit of Pentecost.

    As a post-Vatican II catholic I find the solution to be a no brainer. Hope that my brethren will agree with me. 🙂

  • sebastian2

    I would like to have the same highly selective and limited immigration controls the Vatican has: 3 carefully vetted Syrian families only (12 people).

    That’s my kind of renewal.

    • 100

      Thing is none of those refugees ended up in the Vatican, they are all in a centre in Rome run by a Charity. They will soon be pushed onto the Italian Welfare bill to be paid by the italian tax payers. They are in Italy. The Vatican has taken NADA into the confines of their state.

      • JabbaPapa

        They will soon be pushed onto the Italian Welfare bill to be paid by the italian tax payers

        Your evidence ?

        • 100

          because once accepted for Italian asylum they will have claim the right to benefits. Few of them are of working age and doubtful they are ready for work and self sufficiency in housing etc for a long time if ever.
          The Vatican announced that they would be housed only “temporarily” with various charities in Rome.

          • JabbaPapa

            FYI forcible conjecture does not constitute “evidence” — you have no idea what the conditions of their asylum are, do you, but that doesn’t stop you making things up as you go along.

          • 100

            Show me the contra or stop with your nonsense. Ive given you a factual statement. Your denial is your problem along with many problems you have. Catholic you are not. C u n t. You are

          • JabbaPapa

            Ive given you a factual statement

            No, you haven’t.

          • Sanctimony

            Interesting… but pertinent… definition of this hermaphroditic old bat.

            In a recent life it masqueraded as the Woman in White, so draw your own conclusions…

            She is afflicted with Münchhausen’s syndrome which manifests itself in all her Mittyesque and didactic declamations and one engages with the creature at one’s extreme peril.

            She is the proud possessor of an oral valve which, when activated is capable of delivering an endless cascade of bullshit and bile…

      • sebastian2

        That’s interesting – I didn’t know this. It suggests to me that this was even more of a virtue signalling publicity stunt perhaps.

        • JabbaPapa

          In reality, International Law dictates that the State granting refugee status is responsible for those refugees, and the refugees remain attached to that State for as long as they have that status. Therefore, these refugees are dependent on the social security mechanisms of Vatican City State, NOT Italy.

          The place of physical residence of these refugees is irrelevant to that fact, and it is strictly limited, in these particular cases, by the international Treaty stipulations that exist between Vatican City and other States.

          Vatican City is not a EU member State, and so those refugees have no particular EU legal rights that only the EU or a EU member State could provide them with. They have no right at all, for example, to emigrate to the UK.

          This 100 person is pure and simple making things up out of his own bigotry and his hatred of the Church.

          • sebastian2

            Hmmmmmmmmm I can’t comment on your final sentence here – I really have no idea where the truth lies. However, the Vatican had a motive for its act of “charity” if indeed it really was. My question is “Where does the account for this act of charity finally lie?”

            Does it lie with the Vatican, or with somebody else? I gather the costs may be borne by a charity. But for how long? And then what?

            Either way, it would be interesting to know much more about this gesture and what moral or other lessons it might teach – if any at all.

          • JabbaPapa

            With Vatican City State.

            I’ve met a couple of refugees attached to a micro-state, one of whom had no right to travel outside the confines of that State, even for simple shopping trips.

            Both were required to maintain their ordinary residence there, else lose their status and be deported.

          • sebastian2

            Very interesting perspective. Thanks very much for providing it. 🙂

      • Aberrant_Apostrophe

        So the Pope is a people smuggler?

  • antoncheckout

    I wonder if the the cardinal would suggest that the Catholic view of families is that they should reject the interests of their own children, parents and relatives, and dissolve their rights as a family in the ‘wider community’ to have their goods redistributed by the town hall and their breakfasts provided by a communal food bank run by a global multinational?

    No, I thought not. It’s the opposite.
    Similarly, European nations – and Britain in particular – don’t want our national traditions and legal rights and ethnic cohesiveness melted down to suit opportunistic internationalists.

    The present EU-mess in no way corresponds to the idealised, postwar ‘Europa’ vision.
    And it never will, without the deep root-and-branch reform that its ‘leaders’ have stubbornly refused to implement, because change would expose them to the democratic vote of parliaments and referendums on the Treaty of Lisbon – a vote that Juncker has decreed ‘must never be allowed’.

  • stuartMilan

    quelle surprise. establishment figure reckons that the little people shouldn’t be allowed to decide for themselves

  • 100

    Murphy-O’Connor is Irish anyway so its hardly surprising.

    • greencoat

      What’s hardly surprising?

      • pobjoy

        Treason, of course.

      • 100

        That an Irish geet eould want to be pert of yurop

        • pobjoy

          Like the Vatican, Ireland sympathised with the Nazis.

          • samton909

            Bigfoot sympathized with the Nazis too

          • JabbaPapa

            As did “pobjoy” :

            pobjoy : It’s absurd to talk about zero tolerance for anti-Zionists, because the whole situation is absurd, for many reasons. A man calling himself ‘Chief Rabbi’ has just said that the right to Jewish self-determination has been at the centre of the faith for more than 3,000 years. Well, Ephraim, the original Ephraim would have stoned you just for calling yourself a rabbi. That is, if Genesis is a valid record, which you presumably believe. And for another, the book by which Jews claim possession of certain land also makes it impossible for anyone to successfully claim to be Jewish! Once one has lost possession of a place for nearly two thousand years, it’s quite hard to justify taking it back, because there is no legal means available. A book regarded as Scripture by one person may be regarded as invention by another; and law-makers have a duty and responsibility to take no sides.

  • Why doesn’t the church concentrate on encouraging everybody to say their prayers and read their Bibles? What, in heavens name, has the EU to do with The Catholic Church?

    • pobjoy

      The church is nothing to do with the illegal set-up that calls itself ‘the Catholic Church’. The name ‘Catholic Church’ is a contradiction in terms, because it arose from the idea of volkskirche, that is, ‘the people are the church’. This organisation existed and exists only because no-one had a choice about membership. It is perfectly reasonable, for this reason, to arrest any Catholic in the UK under the Serious Crime Act 2007.

      Most of the leaders of the EU are Catholics; that is, they believe that, ideally, no member of the EU would have a choice about what they believed and how they behaved. Many in the EU (not just in Britain) see that tendency in EU legislation and the attitudes of EU leaders.

      • greencoat

        ‘It is perfectly reasonable, for this reason, to arrest any Catholic in the UK under the Serious Crime Act 2007.’

        Of course it is. Reminds me of that fat comedian ‘married’ to a man who was going to arrest the Pope.

        • pobjoy

          What pope?

      • JabbaPapa

        Your moronic conspiracy theories are completely ludicrous.

      • samton909

        Hows the hunt for Bigfoot going?

    • samton909

      Haven’t you heard? In the age of Pope Francis, the church is now a totally political, non religious organization that focuses on being nice and being politically correct.

  • Sanctimony

    • mahatmacoatmabag

      Did you read my post to you bellow ?

      • Sanctimony

        Yes… thanks, mate… I will follow it up…

        • mahatmacoatmabag

          Most of those who post on there posted on the DT’s letters section but you might remember some of them like Bob3, & Stigenace who is one of the Mods. The moderation is very easy going on there too.

          • Sanctimony

            Thanks

          • samton909

            You forgot the …

  • Trailblazer10

    He could have just sung “Imagine”. Might as well get some practice in.

    • samton909

      Imagine there’s no EU
      It’s easy if you try
      Just let more immigrants in
      The EU will quickly die

  • DavidEnglish84

    “They have challenged Europe to rediscover its roots”

    That is exactly what it has done. The core values of the EU are anti-democratic, anti-patriotism, homogenizing and imperial. It has NEVER lost sight of those core values.

    • JabbaPapa

      Ploutocratic oligarchism isn’t the same thing as imperialism, though I’ve some sympathy for your stated position.

      • DavidEnglish84

        I think George Orwell classified all these “utopian” ideologies, Communism, Fascism, Socialism etc, as “Oligarchical Collectivism”. I think that’s probably a good summery.

        I used “Imperial” because I think the people who run the EU see themselves as the senators of a new Roman Empire, or perhaps a new Islamic Caliphate.

        • Toast well done

          They will eventually be servants of an Islamic Caliphate, but for now they’re safe.

  • Bill Fitzgerald

    We don’t need lectures from the Irish. Keep out of our affairs.

    • samton909

      The Irish are only good at three things: Getting drunk, gay marriage, and one other thing they can’t remember.

  • UK expats in Europe know Italians do very well from EU project and many have high versy senior mamagement positions in EU instituions [via a system of nepotism ] no suprise the Vatican wants UK to remain

  • JSmith

    The problem with the idea of “renewing the EU” is that the EU is incapable of meaningful change. David Cameron’s “renegotiation” demonstrated that. The irony is that if we did Brexit the EU may find change forced upon it from the remaining states.

    In which case Brexit to renew the EU.

  • cmflynn

    Pathetic. Turkey voting for Christmas.

    • samton909

      And Hams vote for Easter

  • Good text. But quite surprising coming from a high-positioned member of a religious organisation which has been eroding for decennia because of its unwillingness, or incapacity, to reform, only hesitatingly giving-in to pressures from society when no alternative idea could be found.

    As a thorough continental, I would wish to get rid of the brits, since they don’t seem to feel part of Europe. But the EU is exactly as the cardinal describes and if the UK stays in the EU and could get a reform beginning, that could compensate for the arrogant and uncooperative attitude the country has sported for so long.

    • Bonkim

      The EU is un-reformable. Britain does not want to be part of an integrated EU – Britain only has commercial interests. Not compatible with the rest.

    • geyien

      Brits are “arrogant and uncooperative” precisely because the EU needs reforming and the Brits get frustrated when the EU refuses to do so. If we were “humble and cooperative”, like most EU members, then nothing would ever be changed.

      So, you want the UK to help reform the EU but then complain when we refuse to go along with the status quo and ask for reforms. Contradictory and hypocritical, if you ask me.

      So yes, we agree, the Brits should leave the EU.

    • JabbaPapa

      The Revelation cannot be “reformed”.

  • geyien

    Why should anyone listen to paedophiles in dresses?

    • JabbaPapa

      You do realise, I hope, that your manner of slander is a Crime ?

    • samton909

      Why? Aren’t people listening to you?

  • evad666

    The EU has no intention of evolving better we all leave, let the EU become extinct..

  • Marvin

    God believers should butt out of reality and logic, and stay down the bottom of the garden with the goblins, fairies and the pixies, and this goes for the Pope as well. BUTT OUT!

    • Terry Mushroom

      Feel better after getting that off your chest?

    • JabbaPapa

      Idiot.

      • Marvin

        FAIRY!

        • JabbaPapa

          Well done in confirming your idiocy so publicly.

          • Marvin

            It is a necessity when dealing with ignorant fools like you who believe in fantasy gods.

      • Sanctimony

        Another unnecessary piece of gratuitous abuse

    • samton909

      Thanks for representing the mental point of view

    • Give our God Immortal Praise

      God believers invented logic, you dope.

      • wibbling

        Is that why when astronomy was considered the Church locked up and burned such people as ‘heretics’? Is that why it set about destroying books and preventing education?

        Religion has caused more wars than anything else in history.

        • Give our God Immortal Praise

          The Vatican funded and published astronomical works, you dope. And the greatest scientific discovery ever made – the Big Bang – was done by a Catholic priest. Doh! As for education, monks established Oxford and Cambridge, etc etc. Are you really so thick?

          • Dominic Stockford

            There is no proof of the so-called ‘big bang’, and your advocacy of it proves that RC’s deny the Bible. Which rather leaves you legless and baseless when it comes to claiming to be Christians.

          • Give our God Immortal Praise

            Stop wriggling, you nutter.

    • PaD

      Live …and let live.

  • Central power

    On the pages below haters spew bile over Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O’Connor’s remarks.
    By the way. What is wrong with the following questions: Is there the risk of a wave of English nationalism? Would a vote to leave the EU lead to Scottish secession? Would it confuse and complicate the relations between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland?

    • yeoman

      A Continental friend believes that it is the imposition of EU conformity that stimulates regional and national movements.

      • Central power

        Where apart from Spain and the UK?
        Esquerra Republicana de Catalunya founded 1931.
        Scottish National Party founded 1934.
        Judging by the quality of your comment:Is not your “Continental friend” Trump?

        • yeoman

          ‘Where apart from Spain and the UK?’
          Having travelled extensively he points to the REsurgence of nationalist/regional movements in Spain, Brittany, Basque areas of France, several regions of Italy, and in Eastern Europe.

          ‘Is not your “Continental friend” Trump?’
          No, he is a retired French engineer, fluent in four European languages and not a LePen supporter, a Gaullist who thinks that the EU has been taken in some wrong directions by socialists.

          • Central power

            Can your retired engineer post the election results of all these resurgent movements (Scotland and Catalonia excepted)?
            As for East Europe – most of these countries have monolithic population – but you are free to enlighten me on their separatist regions.
            Just a footnote – most separatist movements think they will do better outside,
            “Scottish Oil” being a good example. Quebec’s separatist tendencies were killed stone dead with the oil discoveries outside the province.

          • yeoman

            EU elections: Seven regions in Europe that would rather go it alone.
            Guardian 24 May 2014.

    • JabbaPapa

      Yes.

    • wibbling

      Scotland will not be permitted a vote to leave the union should the UK leave the EU.

    • livnletliv

      Whats wrong with English nationalism? And sooner the Scots and Irish clear off the better if that is what they want.

    • Dominic Stockford

      So what. If we are self-governing we have freedom. If the Scots demand to be governed by Brussels, more fool them, let’s watch them go down.

  • yeoman

    Render unto Brussels…??

  • 3x4_34

    The probem is that the EU is not governed by a Pope who reasons in favour of do as you would be done by. The EU has been hijacked by a cabal with mafia like tendencies especially favouring themselves. A more rotten edifice would be hard to find thanks to EU poltroons in high office.

    • JabbaPapa

      Paranoid much ?

      • wibbling

        It’s the truth. The EU is infested with communist fascists.

  • The Patriarchy

    An unwelcome reminder of the wholly discreditable and indeed treacherous role Catholic clergy played in the Scottish referendum. Even after all this time, they are still “the enemy within”.

    • Give our God Immortal Praise

      hate speech.

      • The Patriarchy

        A simple reminder of how the anti-British wretches behaved back in 2014. Not hate speech, simple fact. Damian Thompson of this periodical did much to document their unpatriotic machinations.

        • Give our God Immortal Praise

          no one knows what you’re babbling about.

          • wibbling

            Says the man who votes a certain way because the leader of a fiction designed to suppress enlightenment (and takes bungs from that same Eurocracy, so is biased and corrupt) says he should?

            Give over.

          • Give our God Immortal Praise

            You mad.

      • wibbling

        No, it’s the truth.

    • Sarony

      Plus the wholly discreditable and treacherous role CMOC and his pals played to get Mad Frankie elected. CMOC never to be trusted.

    • Dominic Stockford

      Absolutely so. And the worst of the lot are still the Jesuits, as they always have been – lo, a Jesuit pope – of course he wants us unmanned and de-sovereigned.

  • Give our God Immortal Praise

    I’m all for leaving the EU but if the Holy Father says we must stay in then that’s it and stay in we must — thus come the big day I will have to change my plan to vote for leaving and vote instead for how the Holy Father desires.

    • The Patriarchy

      Stupid speech.

      • Give our God Immortal Praise

        Have you got testicles? Yes or No?

    • DellerboyNZ

      Isn’t permitted Catholic teaching to withdraw?

    • wibbling

      I am God! You will vote to leave the EU.

      I assumed you were gullible and would vote as I command you to. What’s that? I’m not god? You’ve invented god, so I’m just assuming your invention. Now vote rationally.

      • Give our God Immortal Praise

        I will vote how the Holy Father says we must vote.

        • livnletliv

          Well read the bible if you want to know how corrupt the eu beast is.

        • Dominic Stockford

          If you really mean that then you are a blithering idiot sir. A blithering idiot.

          • Give our God Immortal Praise

            Yawn.

        • earthunit

          God is the Holy Father, not the Pope or Cardinal Cormac, and God says vote leave.

    • Sarony

      Go on with you.

    • licjjs

      What!?

      • Give our God Immortal Praise

        What, what?

    • livnletliv

      He is obviously the anti-christ destroying the catholic church.

  • Lady Magdalene

    The EU will not “renew.” It will not reform …. at least, not the way WE want.

    And if we’re foolish enough to vote to Remain, we will have no comeback whatsoever when the EU creates its next integrationist treaty and we’re dragged along in the slipstream, paying for it.

    No thanks.

    VOTE LEAVE.

  • gillardgone

    Listen to Murphy and the bricks, it helps explain the EU and the Church

  • wibbling

    Sir, the EU is a mindless disaster that has done nothing but impoverish, denigrate and devalue the economies and people of Europe. It has brought war, conflict and dictatorship. It is a mess that will not work. we cannot change it one bit – the entire edifice is designed specifically to exclude the voter.

    We must leave the EU for the good of Europe.

  • Marvin

    Please remain at the bottom of the garden with your Goblins, Pixies, Fairies, Leprechauns and Gods. You may discover any of those before the EU reform one asinine policy of theirs.

  • enoch arden

    Not surprising. The EU was a Catholic project from the beginning. Since it was conceived by Louis XIV.

    • livnletliv

      No it was conceived by an anti-christ that would infiltrate the one true church. Looks like this lot succeeded.

      • enoch arden

        The Roman Empire is indeed an Antichrist. Thanks for supporting my point.

  • rtj1211

    Perhaps the EU could be saved if it could recognise the following:

    1. The reason Welsh lamb is the best in the world is because the weather there is cool, wet and windy? You won’t get the same quality of lamb in an arid desert in southern Spain.
    2. The reason Italian tomatoes are so good is because they have hot, dry summers with occasional thunderstorms. You can’t recreate those conditions in Northern France. Although you can to a degree in Marmande……
    3. The same can be said about Greek olives. You won’t be reproducing those on the North Sea coast of England……

    Etc etc etc.

    Until the EU recognises the strength in diversity, rather than the boredom in conformity, it is a concept whose time is long past.

    The EU means nothing if it becomes an empire of central bureaucrats confining the peasants of all EU lands to poverty serving the guzzling porkers in Brussels.

    A ‘new EU’ could easily be reformed, upon totally different premises, after the death of the Fourth Reich, after all.

    It would of course annoy the Americans and the other corporate global misters from Asia, Arabia etc.

    But if the peoples of Europe could spend a little less time worrying about them and a bit more time ‘pursuing an inalienable right to happiness’, then maybe they would create a European Community with values resonant with the majority of the people, rather than with the narrow interests of the selfish?

  • livnletliv

    Disgusting, so everything is wrong about the eu, a corrupt evil, unelected, political dictatorship, which refused to include the word god in any treaty, but it is slipping him a few quid. First time in my life l gave ever been ashamed of being a catholic.

    • Zalacain

      Are you comparing the EU with the corrupt, evil, unelected, religious dictatorship, that makes up the Catholic church?

  • Halo

    I’ll vote “in” if the EU passes a law within a week of the vote to drag out of every member country all catholic paedophile priests and jail the lot of them for 30 years minimum each.

  • Dominic Stockford

    I knew this man for a long time, and along with many of his own clergy shared the opinion that he is a twit. It seems he still is.

  • licjjs

    Here is a really interesting and enlightening view about how other countries are seeing the EU. The sense of identity and purpose is so refreshing:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gE7oCXPb2Iw

  • CRPC

    The EU, rather like the Roman Catholic church itself, is an institution best believed in on your knees, with your head bowed and your eyes shut.

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