From Mr Martin Dyer
SIR — It is not impossible, and it is certainly desirable, that the Polish community in this country might enter into the inheritance which until recently was sustained by the Irish, namely providing an English mission similar to that conducted by the Irish in the past, and which made such a notable contribution to keeping the faith alive here.
Throughout the 19th century and beyond, the Irish arrived in large numbers, not only "to do the jobs we would not do", but also to serve with distinction in the professions, notably as doctors, nurses and teachers. They brought with them their priests. They preserved their community and culture, maintained their individuality and accommodated to English society. And they did all this while encountering a prejudice no less insidious and every bit as overt as that faced by postSecond World War immigrants in Britain today.
The Church should do everything possible to aid the incoming Poles in the practice of their faith. If this includes having their own Masses and priests they should be helped, not hindered. If their priests were to arrive in significant numbers who knows what help this might bring to the Church in England.
Yours faithfully, MARTIN DYER Alderley Edge, Cheshire