Page 9, 24th August 1935

24th August 1935
Page 9
Page 9, 24th August 1935 — Mgr. McDonald States The Facts

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Locations: Saint Andrews, Edinburgh


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Mgr. McDonald States The Facts

The following letter from the Archbishop of Saint Andrews and Edinburgh appeered in The' Tirnes on Monday:

My attention has been called to a paragraph in your issue of August 6 dealing with the recent religious dis

turbances in Edinburgh. Your correspondent says:— In outward manifestation at least it [this feeling resulting in violencel has been thrust upon public notice mainly through the medium of several street -brawls in /morel art-as, The one or two street fights that have takcn place were over in a matter of minutes. . _ A Protestant group staged a dernonstiatiou on the occasion of the recent eucharistic congress . . . but the passive crowd was composed mainly of interested spectators and nothing serious occurred.

The Actual Facts The actual facts are es follows : —The existence of this feeling " was first thrust upon public notice" not by "brawla in poorer areas" but by tumult around the City Chambers at the High StreeL The Lord Provost and corporation invited the delegates of the Catholic Young Men's Society to a reception. A crowd of several thousands created a disturbance which lasted from early afternoon till midnight. The guests of the corporation were insulted in the street and it was deemed advisable to introduce the visitors through a back door strongly guarded by police. A similar demonstration the following day (Sunday) at the Catholic cathedral lasted several hours, and it was with difficulty that the congregation was able to leave the church. A like scene on a somewhat smaller scale was enacted on the King's jubilee day, when the Catholics assembled in the cathedral for their thanksgiving service.

'The next occasion on which these disturbances were " thrust upon public notice" was when the freedom of the city was conferred upon Mr. Lyons, prime minister of Australia. Several

thousands collected again to insult this distinguished guest of the capital, not in one of the " poorer areas" but in the main thoroughfare leading to the first hall in the city. It was on this occasion that the Lord Provost made the apology referred to by your correspondent.

At the Congress The latest and most serious outburst occurred at the eucharist congress. This likewise was not in any slum, but at the Waver/ey Market in Princes Street, and at a service held in private grounds in one of the best residential quarters of tha city. There was disturbance and violence on both Sunday and Monday, and at the concluding service on Tuesday evening a serious disturbance took place_ The events amounted to some thing very different from " passive crowds and brawls in side streets." Catholics have, as acknowledged by

the Scotsman, borne themselves throughout with commendable restraint,

but the campaign of incitement which caused these outbursts still continues and may well result in a repetition of these disgraceful scenes. It is for this reason that, in justice to my sorely-tried people, I ask you to give this letter the same publicity as was given to the statements of your correspondent.

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