Page 2, 9th January 1959

9th January 1959
Page 2
Page 2, 9th January 1959 — Was Mary a martyr to intolerance ?

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Locations: Worcester, Chester, Verona, Durham


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Was Mary a martyr to intolerance ?

SIR' Mr. Hugh Ross Williamson's excellently clear political exposition of the "Kirk e Field" mystery was much appreciated. The writer makes an important point when he refers to Mr. Gatherer's recent showing-up of Buchanan's political libels for what they were, and the neglect by the current literary press to give due prominence to this book.

During her lifetime Queen Mary's actions and motives were constantly distorted by a biased "press". It seems the process is still carried on. A recent best-selling biography (or glorification) of Elizabeth I, for example, quotes against Mary in a selective and narrow fashion.

Mary's actions only makes consistent sense when seen against her political background, and when she is accorded her due place as a key figure in the history of the Reformation in Britain-a princess of immense potential power. May we hope that Mr. Ross Williamson will shortly give us a fulllength study of her life on the lines of his article. It is time upto-date historical research was incorporaited in a history which would incidentally, refute the ex

Poland and Germany

STR, In regard to the dispute between Mr. R. Nowell and Mr. Giertych concerning Germany. I feel I must support Mr. Nowell in his statement that Germany has shifted from Prussian Protestantism to Rhieinish Catholicism, and strongly, object to Mr. Giertych's unfounded statement that "it is not at all sure that even Western Germany will remain in the Western camp".

I agree with Mr. Giertych's principle: Audiatur et altera pars. but it seems to me that he does not like to acknowledge or even to remember that the Catholic Church was unable to take deep enough roots in the eastern part of Poland, White Russia, Ukraine, etc.. because of the bitter dislike and lack of support of the Polish Catholic population and clergy to the idea of the Uniate Church.

It was because of this that the Polish influence was so easily uprooted by the Russians on the e,normous territory from Witebsk and Kieff to the river Bug and even further. So, though indirectly. Poland must also share the responsibility for losing so easily their eastern territories, and especially Lithuania (another blunder of Polish Nationalists!).

Jan Heileman Pedwell House, Ashcott, Nr. Bridgwater, Someeset.

."‘S100 000 on Fares' SIR'-Your readers will find it hard to believe your information, last week, that over £100,000 was spent on fares alone by 83 Verona Fathers and Brothers who went to their African and South American missions last year. The figure is, of course, wrong. Your source of information contained an evident misprint: it should read


Even so. the figure is such that it should open the eyes of some Catholics who perhaps have never thought of the missionaries' travelling expenses. It will be realised, of course, that the fare is only a portion of these expenses, and also that missionaries have to undertake many other journeys besides going to the missions (e.g. a periodical return home for health reasons, etc.).

The bill will be increased a hundredfold if to the small contingent or 53 Verona missionaries we add the hundreds and thousands Of other missionaries who travelled to and from the various mission fields ,trt 1958. " Buying a black baby ' is not all the help Catholics can give to the missions!

(Fr.) F. Centis,

Verona Fathers, 16 Dawson Place. W.2.

We regret the misprint in our story last week, but are glad that further attention is drawn to this subject.-EorroR, "C.H." aggerated or disproved accusations still glibly repeated against the Queen.

A non-Catholic may be permitted to wonder how far she was oppressed by members of her own Church. She refused, nevertheless, to be forced into persecuting her Protestant subjects. Even towards the close of a lifetime of Protestant-inspired calumny and illtreatment. her aspiration seemed to be rathei the deliverance of fellowCatholics in England from their intolerable sufferings than a desire to force her religion on anyone. Her cause was made into a political tool by foreign powers. notably Spain. but she only sought foreign aid in deliverance from unjust captivity after every reasonable offer and concession she made to Elizabeth's ministers had been mocked and ruthlessly betrayed. Her last message to her son was the reverse of bigoted.

One may ask whether Mary was not primarily a martyr to religious intolerance. What is Catholic opinion on this question? She seems to have been one of the few really sincere Christians among contemporary rulers.

E. T. Freeborough

50 Buckleigh Road, S.W.16.

Marian Hierarchy

SIR,-1 should like to thank Mr.

O'Halloran for his correction. By a curious circumstance I confused Bishop Pate (Worcester) with Bishop Scott (Chester). It was the latter who managed to flee the country, and died in exile.

I am also grateful to a priest who has written to me privately to suggest that Kitchen (Llandaff) may not have taken the oath of Supremacy, though he promised to see that others under his jurisdiction did so. On the face of it, it seems unlikely that he did not take the oath, though his doing so may not have been recorded.

Neither point affects my argument. The Elizabethan Hierarchy existed side-by-side with the Marian. being a new State creation, and intruded into sees which were for the most part not vacant (though nine were vacant by death).

Anglican apologists have made much of the fact that a great majority of the parish clergy remained in their parishes, putting this forward as a proof of " continuity " with the pre-Reformation Church. It is important to realise that they only did so by accepting the authority of the new Hierarchy in violation of their oaths of obedience to the A wholesale change of allegiance is no proof that there was no change at all!

Hubert Grant Scarfs

High Wycombe.

Christmas Cards From Abroad

SIR,-I should be very grateful to any of your readers who would be so kind as to send Christmas cards from abroad which are typical of the countries from which they come to our school.

We wish to use them next Christmas in a project which aims at showing both the universality of the keeping of Christmas and some of its national expressions.

W. E. Pickering

(Headmaster) Kirk Merrington School, Kirk Merrington, By Spennymoor, Co. Durham.

France & Britain

From John Biggs-Davison, M.P.

SIR,-May I thank Mr. John

Dingle for his report on the Anglo-French rift? For the sake of common ideals and common interests in Europe. Africa. the Middle East, and elsewhere. we must understand the new Gaullist regime with its courageous programme of national revival and social justice.

Why indeed these charges of "discrimination"? Another word for "Preference", "discrimination" is essential to the economy of the British Compsonwealth, the French Union or Hitrope. A business or a nation must, if it is to prosper. discriminate in favour of good trading partners.

John Biggs-Davison

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