St Simon's Parish Blog

Welcome to the Blog of St Simon Stock Catholic Church, South Ashford, Kent, UK. Our address is: Brookfield Road Ashford Kent TN23 4EU

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For nine years up till July 2010, I was parish priest at St Simon Stock Catholic Church, South Ashford, Kent, England. From July 2010 until June 2011 I was Associate Pastor at St Peter's Cathedral, Marquette, Michigan USA and then Pastor at St Anthony Parish, Gwinn, MI until October 2013. I then transferred to the Archdiocese of Portland in Oregon to serve as Director of the Tribunal. And that's what I am currently doing. Since February 2015 I have also been serving as Pastor at St Stephen Parish, South East Portland. I miss "da UP" (Upper Peninsula of Michigan) but love being here in the Pacific North West.

Friday, October 20, 2006

Faith Schools Admissions

Archbishop MacDonald has written a letter to all parish priests about the Governments plans to impose on faith schools a 25% quota of places that must be given to those not of the faith. Although the proposal at the moment is only intended to apply to new schools, it might also be imposed upon existing schools. This would mean, in some areas, that 25% of Catholic parents who presently send their children to Catholic schools would not be able to do so in the future. He writes: “Given the importance of Catholic schools to Catholic parents and to Catholic parish communities, and indeed the Church’s financial and other commitments to our schools, this is clearly unjust and must be resisted.” He goes on: “In relation to new schools, it could be that the Church would be unable to establish these, should they be needed, as it is difficult to see how any imposition of this kind by the state could be reconciled with my own responsibilities under Trust and Canon Law.”

The Archbishop asks priests to make their parishioners aware of these threats and to encourage them to lobby their local MPs and Education Ministers.

I have contacted our MP, Damian Green, and he has confirmed that he agrees with the Archbishop and that he has made his views known to the Conservative Education team.

You can find details of your local MP at http://www.parliament.uk/directories/directories.cfm.

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