- Battle lines drawn
This week produced the clearest evidence yet that the Synod Fathers are sharply divided between those who are supporting Pope Francis in his efforts to present a more pastoral vision of the Church and those determined first and foremost to emphasise its moral teaching
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- Report finds 'systemic failures' by C of E over allegations of abuse by former dean
- Middle East must keep its Christians, says Vatican calling for scrutiny of Islamists' funding
- Nichols says synod is opening pathways for divorced and remarried
- Francis to visit Istanbul's Hagia Sophia and Blue Mosque as concerns over treatment of Christians resurface
- Synod final document is a setback for Francis' reforms – for now Elena Curti in Rome
- Curious muddle of Lectionary translations Philip Endean SJ
- Annulments can be far from merciful Bill Wright
Ben Ryan on the Tablet blog says that it is worrying that "a court" had ever decided that an adoption agency could not also be a Catholic religious organisation; that however is not the case.
The original decision made by the Office of the Scottish Charity Regulator (OSCR) was a purely administrative decision made by a quango, not a court. That decision was appealed to a court, namely the Scottish Charity Appeal Panel, which gave a legal judgment accepting that St Margaret’s Children’s Society in Glasgow was acting in accordance with its charitable constitution which required it to provide all its services in accordance with Catholic teaching. This made it a religious organisation entitled to the benefit of the specific exemptions for Charities and Religious Organisations set out in the Equality Act.
The decision by the appeal panel makes it clear that Catholic charities can and should make their Catholic identity clear in their constitutions and should act at all times in accordance with Catholic teaching. The legal exemptions for religious organisations and charities are set out and explained in the CTS Booklet "Guide to Religious Freedom and the Law".
Neil Addison (Barrister), National Director, Thomas More Legal Centre