From Mr Michael Telford SIR — Gerard Noel’s account of his friendship with the late Duke of Norfolk (Features, Nov 5) was most interesting. The mention of the late Fr Michael Hollings brought back a memory of over 30 years ago. I was attending a retreat at Loyola Hall, the Jesuit house near Liverpool. One of the speakers was Fr Hollings.
He had not been speaking long before puzzled looks were being exchanged among us, the audience. In those days it was inevitable that Humanae Vitae would enter the proceedings and it was on this subject especially that Fr Hollings began saying things which seemed to me to be outright rejections of the Church’s teaching. I asked Fr Hollings what the Pope would be likely to think about other Catholics holding views such as his. Fr Hollings’s response was a shrug, a smile of withering condescension, and the words: “Who cares what the Pope thinks?” Gerard Noel mentions that Fr Hollings was Miles Norfolk’s first suggestion as successor to Cardinal Heenan. From the foregoing account, you will understand why I believe, de mortuis notwithstanding, that His Grace’s judgment in this matter was seriously in question.
Yours faithfully, MICHAEL TELFORD Horley, Surrey,