I have a reverence for the old pagans; the new ones make me reach for my revolver

30 August 2017 | by Melanie McDonagh


Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O’Connor has, alas, been unwell for some time but he dealt with his illness in the only way possible for a man of his ebullient temperament, by getting out and about. One of his last expeditions before going to hospital was with me: we went to the Proms together to hear Stephen Hough play Brahms. It was a magnificently physical performance – Hough had to wipe down the keys afterwards – and to round off the evening, we got to see him in his dressing room afterwards. Was he composing at present, the cardinal asked? It turned out he was.

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