The monkey sings alone

8th April 2005 at 01:00
Your leader "Think before you preach" (TESS, March 25) is not only ignorant but insulting to orthodox Catholics.

Amazingly, you congratulate Michael McGrath, appointed by Bishop Joe Devine as director of the Catholic Education Service, for "making the Church's position clear". Hilarious, not least because Michael McGrath has absolutely no authority to speak on behalf of any Scottish bishop, let alone his own boss.

Hilarious, too, because Michael McGrath's appointment - as every informed Catholic in Scotland knows - was a disastrous mistake. He is on public record as stating that he does not believe in "imposing" any particular faith tradition on any group of pupils - that is, he does not believe in passing on the Catholic faith to the Catholic pupils whose parents send them to Catholic schools for precisely that purpose.

Not that this prevents him from drawing his obscene salary, of course.

"Integrity" like "Catholic education" is a concept beyond his ken.

Mr McGrath is not authorised to speak for the bishops. His job is to deliver an authentic Catholic education in Scottish Catholic schools. That he is manifestly failing to do, as evidenced by the lapsation rate among the young.

Now that, astonishingly, Michael McGrath has publicly voiced his personal opposition to the Church's application of its veto to ensure that teachers appointed to Catholic schools are not living scandalous lifestyles, our organisation will be pressing for his dismissal as a matter of some urgency.

Without the guarantee of good example from teachers living according to Catholic belief and practice, the entire raison d'etre of Catholic schools ceases to be. Hence the Church's veto in the first place. Instead of ridiculing Bishop Devine, therefore, you should be challenging the ignorance of the likes of Michael McGrath with his self-serving "belief" in Catholic schools.

In conclusion, may I suggest that you review your policy of taking the word of the monkey over that of the organ grinder - not an intelligent approach for the editor of a publication that promotes itself within the educational community.

Patricia McKeever Editor, Catholic Truth Princes Street Edinburgh

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