Letters either commenting on stories we have published, or raising issues relevant to Catholics.

Letter: Covid concerns + comments

Fr Tom Grufferty from Portsmouth Diocese writes:

I have three major concerns about the current Church procedures on Catholic Church attendance at Mass.

- I have celebrated Mass where there was more than six people in one loop. - I have also seen on TV, Streamed Masses were people would not receive Holy Communion except on the tongue. This is suicidal Catholicism...

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Letter re 'Pakistan: Christian sentenced to death for blasphemy'

Re: 'ICN September 9 2020 - Pakistan: Christian sentenced to death for blasphemy'

In 1927, the British colonial rulers of the sub-continent made it a criminal offence to commit "deliberate and malicious acts intended to outrage religious feelings of any class by insulting its religious belief". The law did not discriminate between religions

The law was ret...

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Letter: Why have US B-52 bombers arrived in RAF Fairford?

On Saturday 22nd August, six US Air Force B-52 bombers arrived at RAF Fairford. These are nuclear capable. Official sources say it is "a long planned training mission", but the local news site Gloucester Live describes it as "a surprise development". This is clearly a pointed message to Russia, given what's happening in Belarus. General Jeff Harrigian, US Air Forces in Europe and Air...

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Appeal from Cenacolo Community in Medjugorje

In 1983, an Italian nun called Sister Elvira Petrozzi founded the Cenacolo Community, an organization to help young people whose lives had taken a wrong turn. Now the organization is comprised of 71 different communities around the world. As most pilgrims to Medjugorje know, there is a Comunita Cenacolo nearby.

Many of the young people who enter the Cenacolo community are addicted to drug...

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Letter from Taize + Virtual choir video

Lots of choice where to put your tent

Brother Paolo writes: There are now a number of tents dotted over the camping field in Taizé, and at prayer times there are as many "other people" in the church as brothers of the community. This week there are more than 100 meeting participants, mostly from France and Germany. Visitors in the church need to sit on crosses marked with tape on the floor...

Although the French com...

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Future of live streaming Mass

I read with interest your article today about live streaming Masses. ( June 12 2020 - East Anglia: Cathedral's new live-stream services attract worldwide congregation - https://www.indcatholicnews.com/news/39800 )

I "shopped" around until I have settled on a parish where the Mass is as inclusive as perhaps it can be under the circumstances and the homilies are thoughtful and hold...

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Letter urges government to protect prostitutes during Coronavirus

Image ICN/JS

Sarah Champion MP, Chair of the APPG prostitution and global sex trade, has joined forces with a cross party group of MPs, Peers, former Met Police Chief, Church and women's groups to urge the Home Secretary to safeguard prostitutes in the UK. They write:

"We write to seek reassurance that the Home Office is responding to the heightened risks faced by prostituted peop...

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Letter from Lesvos

Beth Gardiner-Smith, Chief Executive of Safe Passage writes: COVID-19 has had a sudden and dangerous impact on the safety and wellbeing of refugees around the world, particularly the most vulnerable. In Greece, extreme overcrowding in some refugee camps makes social distancing impossible. In Moria camp on Lesvos there is one tap for 1,300 people, whilst access to medical care continues...

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Letter: Time to abandon £205 billion Trident project

Bruce Kent/image ICN

Bruce Kent, vice president of CND, writes:

Our Chancellor says that this is the time to be bold. Hence billions of pounds of extra extra spending to get us through the current crisis. Some of his boldness makes good sense. Those unemployed as a result of this crisis will get some protection.

One more obvious piece of boldness would be to cancel the Trident submar...

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Letter from Manila

Manila from the air image: ICN/JS

A few times each day a helicopter passes overhead and lands on the helipad of a five star hotel near Manila bay, a service to guests who would prefer to avoid our famous traffic. Its flight path goes over the national sports stadium in whose covered alcoves the homeless sleep and store their handful of belongings… so close, and yet so far.

The distance between rich and poor here is grea...

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Kent parishioners offer alternative proposal to closure of their church

Parishioners from St Thomas More's church in West Malling, Kent, sent this reply to Archbishop John Wilson regarding the threatened closure and sale of their church surrounding parish buildings. In the letter dated 27 January 2020, they express their sadness and offer an alternative proposal. Their full letter follows:

Dear Archbishop Wilson,

We write in reply to your letter dated 2...

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Letter: A church is more than a building and a piece of land

Dear ICN

I'm a parishioner at St Thomas More RC Church in West Malling, Kent, the plight of which has been reported in the ICN and other media in recent weeks. I would also like to add to the concerns and I've written to The Most Reverend John Wilson to air them. Namely, the parishioners - us!

Many of us have come from other places in the world and 'feel they have come home' here. I...

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Letter: re St Thomas More's church, West Malling

St Thomas More's, West Maiiling

Parishioners at St Thomas More's church in West Malling, Kent, were told shortly before Christmas that the Archdiocese of Southwark were planning to put their church and other buildings up for sale in the Spring. Later the Archdiocese issued the following Tweet:

'We would like to add that the parish itself is not being closed, but there may be need for nearby relocation in due course . We...

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Letter: Irish Catholics deserve a voice in selecting successor to Archbishop Martin

Archbishop Diarmuid Martin

Alan Whelan writes: 2020 is likely to be a momentous year for the Catholic Church in Dublin and the whole island of Ireland. Archbishop Diarmuid Martin has clearly indicated that he will submit his resignation letter to Pope Francis in a few months time when he reaches his 75th birthday. His time at the helm of Dublin archdiocese has rarely seen him out of the news and he has not been...

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