Tales of a holy terrier

19th May 2006 at 01:00
The impending retiral of Tommy Bradshaw as head of St Thomas Aquinas Secondary in Glasgow, marked suitably at the recent Catholic heidies'

conference (as we reported last week), reminded us that the auld characters are slowly disappearing - not just from the halls of academe but from the aisles and pews of their religious cousins in the Church.

The no-nonsense style of recently deceased Monsignor Pat Grady, longest serving priest in the Edinburgh and St Andrew's Archdiocese, gave rise to a large number of stories repeated gleefully at his funeral.

Based in Edinburgh's western suburbs but known to schools far and wide, Grady once heard a yappy dog attempting to gain entry to the garden and to his beloved cairn terrier. In response, he let fly with impressive invective through the half-open window.

"That's no way for a man of the cloth to address one of God's creatures,"

the douce tones of the dog's owner remonstrated.

To which the Cambridge graduate came over all Churchillian: "Madam, I was not addressing the dog."

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