Cardinal Cormac's letter to Westminster Diocese over 'media attacks'

 The following letter was sent to all parishes in Westminster on Sunday. My dear people, As you know, not only I personally but the whole Catholic Church in England and Wales has been under attack from some quarters in these past days. I am very conscious that all our priests and people, feeling the weight of that pressure, are deeply concerned. For myself, I deeply regret any damage that has been done following a mistaken decision in the past. Failure of course has to be acknowledged but we also recognise the gift of God's forgiveness. All of you, the people of the Diocese, are aware of the goodness and trustworthiness of the overwhelming majority of our priests, You are also aware of the tremendous efforts of the Catholic Church is undertaking for the protection of children. The report of Lord Nolan's independent committee has been accepted by all the bishops, and is being implemented in all the parishes of out two countries. This is something that nurtures confidence both in the bishops and all of you, that the protection of children is of the highest priority in the Catholic Church and will remain so. The Nolan Report will be built upon in time to come. Today is the feast of Christ the King, when we remember the triumph of Our Lord over human history. It is a feast which speaks of expectation and hope at the centre of our faith. I have every confidence that the Catholic community will meet the difficulties and the pressures of the present time with its traditional faith and courage. We know that we are not alone because the Lord Jesus is faithful to his promises. He will always be with his Church and reminds us "let not your hearts be troubled, trust in God still, and trust in me? There is no need for us to be afraid. With Christian hope and courage we can confront the issues of our time and continue to deepen our faithful witness in our society. Thank you for all you do in the mission of the Church and be assured of how much I value your support and above all, your prayers. Yours devotedly in Christ Cormac Murphy-O'Connor 22 November 2002

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