Category Archives: Events Past

Review of Christian Persecution: 7 November 2019 at 7pm

Thursday 7 November at 7pm – Christian Persecution: Problems and Progress
Bishop Philip Mounstephen of Truro, author of the Independent Review of FCO Support for Persecuted Christians, and Rehman Chishti MP, Special Envoy on Freedom of Religion or Belief, discuss the persecution of Christians four months after publication of the Truro Review.
Doors at 6.30pm. Followed by a Drinks Reception.

 Venue: St Mary Moorfields Church, 4-5 Eldon Street, London EC2M 7LS (not wheelchair accessible).

Please register at info@cuct.org or 020 8749 1321 or at Eventbrite: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/o/catholic-union-charitable-trust-13493819133

Craigmyle Lecture – Lord Glasman – Thursday 10 October 2019

Thursday 10 October at 6.30pm – The Craigmyle Lecture

“Catholic Social Thought and the Economics of the Common Good”.

This year’s Craigmyle Lecture will be given by Lord Maurice Glasman, the Labour peer, political theorist and best known as a founder of “Blue Labour”. All welcome.

Followed by a Drinks Reception.

Venue: Notre Dame University, 1 Suffolk Street, London SW1Y 4HG.

 

Pope Francis and his Vision of the Church – Friday 25 October 2019

The Catholic Union Charitable Trust and Farm Street Church will host a talk by Fr James Hanvey SJ on:

“Pope Francis and his Vision of the Church” 

on Friday 25 October 2019 at 7pm in the Church Hall, Farm St Church (Church of the Immaculate Conception), 114 Mount Street, London W1K 3AH.  Mass in the Church is at 6pm.

Free entry.  All welcome. Followed by a Drinks Reception.

Talk by Patrick Grady MP on Wednesday 12 June at 6.45pm in Parliament

A full report of this talk is available courtesy of Independent Catholic News at: 

https://www.indcatholicnews.com/news/37298

The Catholic Union Charitable Trust has organised a talk by Patrick Grady MP on Wednesday 12 June 2019 at 6.45pm in Committee Room 6 in the House of Commons.

The title of the talk is “Catholicism and Public Life in Scotland”.

Patrick Grady is the Chief Whip of the Scottish National Party and was elected MP for Glasgow North in 2015.  Between 2011 and 2015 he worked as Advocacy Manager at the Scottish Catholic International Aid Fund.

Members of the Catholic Union are also invited to attend Holy Mass in the Chapel of St Mary Undercroft at 6pm by kind invitation of the Catholic chaplain, Canon Pat Browne.  The chapel is located in the south west corner of Westminster Hall.

The Committee Room holds only 65 people.  Please register to attend with the CUCT office on 020 8749 1321 or at info@cuct.org.

Craigmyle Lecture 5 October 2017

The full text of the Craigmyle Lecture given by the Rt Hon Baroness Scotland QC, Secretary-General of the Commonwealth on 5 October 2017 is at the link below:

Secretary-General Patricia Scotland Craigmyle Lecture

The text of the Press Release issued by the Commonwealth Secretariat is at the link below:

http://thecommonwealth.org/media/news/secretary-general-opens-discussion-faith-commonwealth

 

 

MARTYRS AND EXILES

MARTYRS AND EXILES: TRAGEDY AND HOPE IN THE MIDDLE EAST

A record audience of over 100 people crowded into the Trafalgar Hall at Notre Dame University near Trafalgar Square on Thursday 1 June to hear two complementary accounts of the current situation for Christians and other persecuted minorities in the Middle East.  The event entitled “Martyrs and Exiles” was organised by the Catholic Union Charitable Trust.

The first speaker was Gerard Russell, the former British and UN diplomat and author of Heirs to Forgotten Kingdoms: Journeys into the Disappearing Religions of the Middle East. Gerard began by recalling the ambush and murder of a group of Coptic Christians in Egypt on 26 May who were on their way to a monastery.  Sadly this is only the latest in a series of attacks on Egypt’s minority Christian community which makes up 10% of the population.

Gerard said that he had wanted to show in his book that the situation does not need to be like this and that it hasn’t always been like this. In earlier centuries Christians, while not regarded as equal in Islamic societies, were often recognised and valued in the public space. In Egypt, Copts have served as Prime Minister although their situation deteriorated under President Sadat.

Gerard also spoke about some of the non-Christian minorities featured in his book: the Yazidis, Druze, Mandeans, Samaritans and Zoroastrians. He said that without adopting a relativist approach, religious liberalism should strengthen our faith and make us better Christians because it helped us understand more clearly the possible origins of some of our own ideas (for example, Zoroastrian ideas about heaven and hell). All these faiths have played a part in our history and while we don’t have to agree with them, he hoped that they would survive and he observed that they have proved remarkably resilient over many periods of persecution.

John Pontifex, Head of Press and Information for Aid to the Church in Need UK then spoke about his recent visit to Aleppo and the return of Christians to the Nineveh Plains.  Work in Iraq and Syria is now the main focus for ACN and John showed images of the destruction in Aleppo, including many of the ancient city’s cathedrals.  Aleppo has seen a 90% reduction in its Christian population and ACN supports those who remain-in many cases the poorest and weakest in society.  ACN also provides support for other faiths, including Muslims from Eastern Aleppo.

In Iraq, the proportion of Christians in the population has gone from 10% in 1980 to 1% in 2017, perhaps now as few as 150,000 people of whom half are displaced.  Nevertheless, with Daesh now removed from Nineveh, there is the possibility for Christians to return.  There are huge challenges as Christian villages have been devastated but ACN have been taking careful steps to support those who wish to return as they are best hope for the survival of the Christian community in Iraq.  What is needed is a “Marshall Plan” for Iraq and Archbishop Bashar Warda of Erbil was in London in May seeking support in meetings with the Prince of Wales, Cardinal Vincent Nichols and government officials.

Both speakers saw some grounds for hope amongst the destruction and killings, described by many as genocide, but a massive international effort will be required before Christians and other minorities can again live and flourish in these parts of the Middle East.

The next Catholic Union Lecture will be given by Baroness Scotland, Secretary-General of the Commonwealth on Thursday 5 October 2017 at Notre Dame University, London.