A former monk of Ampleforth College in North Yorkshire has been jailed for sexually abusing three boys under 13. Peter Turner, 80, of Redcar, sexually abused three boys aged under 13, and admitted 14 charges including indecent assault, gross indecency and another serious sexual offence. The abuse took place at the College and a parish in Cumbria between 1984 and 1990. Turner was known then as Father Gregory Carroll.
St Mary’s University, based in Twickenham, south London, is to launch a new postgraduate campus in Edinburgh, offering taught Masters courses in Theology and Catholic Education beginning in the academic year 2020/21. The initiative is being run in partnership with the Archdiocese of St Andrews and Edinburgh, and will run out of the Gillis Centre in central Edinburgh.
Passionist priest and social activist Fr John Sherrington CP has died aged 73. Fr Sherrington’s extensive ministry included work advocating for refugees and asylum seekers, miners and trade unions, LGBT Catholics, and supporting Catholics with HIV and Aids. He was diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease in 2013. An obituary will follow next week.
The Archbishop of Southwark, John Wilson, has been named as vice president of the Prison Advice and Care Trust (Pact). Archbishop Wilson, who has worked as a prison chaplain, paid tribute to Pact’s work supporting prisoners and their families.
Homeless deaths in Scotland increased by almost a fifth in 2018, prompting the Archdioceses of St Andrews and Edinburgh, Glasgow, and the Diocese of Aberdeen and Justice and Peace Scotland to call on the government to take action. A statement from Glasgow Archdiocese said that the 195 homeless deaths in 2018, up from 164 in 2017, “reveal the awful reality” of homelessness, and insisted that “every single death recorded is a personal tragedy”. The call comes as the UK Government announced it would double donations to the Scottish Catholic International Aid Fund’s Lent appeal.
Paintings of Jesus distributing loaves and fishes from a kebab van and turning water into wine at an English village fete form part of a new exhibition by British artist Gary Bunt, that is due to tour cathedrals this year. The exhibition, which fuses British modernism, nostalgia and Scripture, launched at Liverpool Cathedral on 15 February.
Bishop Denis Nulty of Kildare has called on the new government to appoint a minister to look after the welfare of families. Bishop Nulty, president of Accord, the marriage care and relationship counselling agency, told The Tablet: “I think there should be a minister appointed for the family to look after the welfare of families because the family is the bedrock on which society is built.” He was speaking after new figures for Accord showed that 14,894 individuals last year attended one of Accord’s sacramental marriage preparation courses while 24,006 counselling sessions were provided by Accord’s counsellors to couples and individuals experiencing relationship difficulties across the organisation’s 54 centres on the island of Ireland.
A parish priest in Drogheda decried the “appalling wickedness and evil” of the criminal gangs who murdered and dismembered the body of a local 17-year-old boy. Preaching at Holy Family Church in Ballsgrove, Drogheda, for the funeral of Keane Mulready Woods, Fr Phil Gaffney warned of the “normalisation” of a drugs culture in Ireland. “We need a nationwide response from our government,” said Fr Gaffney.
Baptism records are to be included in a data protection inquiry into the Catholic Church in Ireland following complaints by former Catholics who requested that their records be deleted under General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR). According to a Sunday Times report, former Catholic Marty Meany, editor of the tech website Goosed.ie, complained to the Data Protection Commission (DPC) after the Diocese of Ossory refused to delete his baptism and confirmation records. On 28 May 2018, Mr Meany wrote to Bishop Dermot Farrell of Ossory requesting that his data be deleted in relation to baptism and other sacraments. “Church registers are documents of historic and archival significance,” Bishop Farrell said.