Archbishop of Glasgow’s £1Million Evangelisation

Archbishop of Glasgow’s £1Million Evangelisation

From Flourish… with some editorial comment injected…

A future built on vibrant, outward-looking parishes, where priests and lay people share the challenge of spreading the good news … that’s the vision outlined by Archbishop Nolan in a powerful pastoral letter which will have a major impact on the faith life of Catholics for years to come. After a year spent listening and learning, the Archbishop has launched a series of initiatives designed to restore energy and enthusiasm to parishes after the challenges of Covid and prolonged closure and designed to equip the Archdiocese to face the future. Among the key points are:

The establishment of a new £1m fund to support parishes with initiatives to evangelise
 Ed:     Seriously?  Seems like only yesterday we were told that parishes would be closing and merging all over the place, so with all these empty churches, who, precisely, is going to be “evangelised”?  Can’t be those outside the Church, non-Catholics of one kind or another because that wouldn’t be “ecumenical” and we can’t have that.  Who, then?  Is the archbishop seriously telling us that the faithful few who attend their parishes (and traditional Masses where available) are somehow in need of one million quid’s worth of “evangelising”?  Gimme a break.  Why not simply try the age-old method of getting the priests to visit the lapsed in their homes and invite them to confession?  You’d be surprised at the response from many, if not all.   

The creation of five new consultative bodies (to be known as ‘deanery councils’) to allow local lay people and priests to recommend how best to organise church life in their local area 
 Ed:     Seriously?
  Another talking shop? Or rather, another five talking shops?  Don’t make me laugh.  Recommendation #1 is likely to be along the lines of holding everything from Mass to Legion of Mary meetings in the local MacDonald’s to attract the youngsters.  Gimme another break. 

A rallying cry for people to live coherent lives which will attract others to the faith.
 Ed:     Seriously?  I’m assuming “coherent lives” is a euphemism for no contraception; no same-sex partnerships, no affairs – in short fidelity to the Church’s teaching on marriage… Oh and celibacy.  Seriously? And is this “rallying cry” addressed to the folks who will be running the deanery councils etc or, more likely than not, to the rest of us, the hoi polloi?  Gimme yet another break. 

Later this month a consultation process entitled ‘Looking to the Future’ will be launched with representatives of every parish invited to a meeting at the Archdiocesan offices.   There, the new deanery councils made up of one lay person and one priest from each parish will meet and learn what is expected of them.  Read more here

Editor writes…

Apparently, some priests in the Archdiocese of Glasgow have contacted The Times (in London!) for publicity over this scandal – a publication which requires online subscription (i.e. hard cash) before allowing their reports to be read.  And you lot wonder why we have decided to shut up shop!  These may be the same priests who provided me with a list of allegedly double-living clergy in the Archdiocese of Glasgow and if so, I hope their consciences are troubling them deeply as they read this Flourish report.  They’ll get my drift.

They took flight – and ran twice as fast as did the Apostles on the night of Our Lord’s arrest – at the arrival of a lawyer’s letter to prevent publication of the names of those allegedly double-living clergy. That legal threat would not have gone unchallenged but for their unfortunate race from the battlefield, as I intimate in my talk at our recent Conference.

Those who can afford The Times subscription are unlikely to see the issue – let alone feel the need to do anything about this latest double-speak and scandalous waste of money in Glasgow, but, who cares. The priests can fool themselves into believing that they’ve done something…

Of course, if these priests really cared, they would come out of hiding and speak out. They really do need to ponder the terrifying warnings to priests sent by God through His Prophets – notably Jeremiah:  Woe to the pastors who destroy and tear the sheep of my pasture, saith the Lord. (Jer. 23:1)   Woe, indeed.

Let Glasgow flourish by the preaching of Thy Word and the Praising of Thy Name.

Your thoughts…  

Comments (67)

  • westminsterfly Reply

    Oh dear Lord, how many of these schemes like ‘Renew’, ‘Catholic ALPHA’, ‘At Your Word, Lord’ etc have we had to endure over the decades? There’s been so many of them in England I’ve forgotten the names of most of them (mainly because I ignored them from their inception). However, they all have two things in common: (a) massive expenditure, and (b) total failure.

    April 12, 2023 at 6:43 pm
    • Michaela Reply


      “Catholic Alpha” – I’d forgotten all about that! It was such a big thing at the time, too.

      It’s about time the bishops stopped messing around with these silly ideas and projects and got down to real work – like visiting the people in their homes and encouraging the lapsed to come back. Why is that so hard for them to understand? It seems so obvious.

      April 12, 2023 at 8:46 pm
      • westminsterfly

        My late uncle was a non-Catholic, and he did the ALPHA scheme in his own denomination. When I asked him about it, it became clear that deepening his knowledge of the Christian religion was not his motive for attending. In his case, it was for company and they used to chat and have drinks and snacks, and I think he just enjoyed it for that. I wonder how many others – Catholic and non-Catholic – used it as a kind of social club? CO also did a critique of Catholic ALPHA:

        April 13, 2023 at 1:15 pm
      • Margaret Mary


        I do think you’ve hit something important there. A lot of these projects are really as escape from loneliness for a lot of people. It’s sad, really.

        April 13, 2023 at 6:36 pm
    • Leitourgos Reply

      One reason, perhaps the principal reason they fail is that they do not teach the reasonable certainty of the Christian faith. The faith is presented in such bland terms that it captures neither minds nor hearts, and leaves people pretty much as they were.

      A non-Catholic of mine who was heavily involved in Alpha said that he thought its popularity had far more to do with the social dimension it opened up than with Christ.

      April 16, 2023 at 7:12 pm
  • westminsterfly Reply

    Just one of the schemes meant to ‘revitalise’ the Catholic Church that I mentioned in the above comment: ‘Renew’ from the 1980’s – read several critiques of it from Christian Order magazine. Nothing new under the sun . . .

    April 12, 2023 at 7:00 pm
  • editor Reply


    We had “Renew” in Glasgow, as well. As you say, nothing new under the sun.

    April 12, 2023 at 7:20 pm
  • westminsterfly Reply

    I think I read in CO at the time that under Bishop Cormac Murphy O’Connor, in spite of his pushing ‘Renew’, Arundel & Brighton diocese was decimated . . . thankfully I missed out on all these things.

    April 12, 2023 at 7:40 pm
    • Nicky Reply


      “in spite of” – maybe because of “Renew” Arundel & Brighton was decimated! These programmes are not Catholic in their content or spirit, IMO, so God is not going to be blessing them.

      April 14, 2023 at 9:33 am
      • westminsterfly

        I take your point. I hadn’t thought of it that way! Mind you, +Cormac RIP was also the kiss of death to any diocese.

        April 15, 2023 at 3:44 pm
  • Petrus Reply

    Does this man actually believe his own drivel? I can remember Cardinal Winning’s Pastoral Plan – a failure. Archbishop Conti’s “Faith Into Action” – a failure. Archbishop Tartaglia and the New Evangelisation – a failure. It’s laughable.

    April 12, 2023 at 7:40 pm
    • Laura Reply


      Wasn’t there a whiff of scandal due to money concerns about Faith Into Action? That was what came to my mind when I saw this thread.

      April 12, 2023 at 8:39 pm
      • Petrus

        Yes, way back in 2004/2005 I reported on it for Catholic Truth. It was financially corrupt. They took thousands from people and what did they get? Fatter priests and emptier parishes.

        April 12, 2023 at 8:43 pm
      • Fidelis

        I remember that business about FIA – I don’t think we ever got to the truth about that, but it was very fishy at the time.

        April 12, 2023 at 11:16 pm
    • Bernie Reply


      You can add the New Evangelisation (Congregation or Dicastery or whatever it’s called) and you have to wonder if they think that’s been a success, or if the concessions to other religions especially Islam, e.g. the Abraham House are taken as a sign of success?

      April 15, 2023 at 1:11 pm
  • westminsterfly Reply April 12, 2023 at 9:01 pm
    • Fidelis Reply

      Heavens above – those stats! The overwhelming majority of US Catholics are anything but Catholic, if those stats are accurate and there is no reason to doubt them. It would be the same here, if we had pollsters doing the checking. So, what’s the point of throwing good money after bad to do nothing more than put a bit of lipstick on a pig. It’s ridiculous.

      April 12, 2023 at 11:15 pm
      • Margaret Mary


        I absolutely agree with you that those US stats would be the same here. There’s a reason why the church authorities are not commissioning polls, LOL! Try having a conversation with any average Catholic about the moral issues and you will struggle to believe what you hear. All the stuff you hear on the TV is coming out of the mouths of these so-called Catholics, well, the Church has to move with the times, take people with you, blah blah. It’s very troubling, and very sad to see the way the faith has all but disappeared, definitely in Scotland and no wonder when you have an archbishop throwing away a million quid on a bunch of talking shops.

        April 13, 2023 at 6:39 pm
  • FDS Reply

    In other words, that Bishop is looking for more money from us to fund it.

    Nothing new under the sun. Similar scheme was hatched back in 1995 when I was very young. Bishop magee wanted to build a new 1M church. Parish protested it cos we don’t have any money. It was just an ordinary parish with some wealthy invividuals living there. I recall that some people were quite exercised over this proposal – 1m church.

    Guess what, it was dropped as Bishop magee was named in a report re abuses later.

    Now that church was renovated few years ago as it’s attendence has dropped from 5 masses to 3 now on Sundays. Could see it dropping down to 2 or 1 in near future.

    That 1m scheme for brand new church was finally discarded. From there, I learned there were some 1m scheme/s planned by the Church over the years in various countries. It implies that they are looking for more money from ourselves even though they are very wealthy.

    April 12, 2023 at 9:56 pm
    • editor Reply


      Well, I had an email earlier, with a screenshot of an advert for the sale of (one of) the Archbishop’s houses, the one at St Andrew’s Drive, Pollock shields, Glasgow, and that was advertised at almost a million, so I’m guessing they are getting money from various properties to waste, not relying solely on the collections!

      That screenshot had “SOLD” plastered across it, so is no longer available to view on the (Rettie) website.

      April 12, 2023 at 10:02 pm
      • Faith of Our Fathers

        When i read the Article more closely their is a Quote from The Archbishop saying ” Its not to go out and preach about the Catholic Church but to Preach of Jesus “. Am certainly missing something here so please help me out . Why is the Glasgow Catholic Dioceses spending £1Million not to speak about The Catholic Church whilst speaking of Jesus . We know and we Believe 100% that Jesus Christ started the Catholic Church. Or does the good Archbishop not believe in The Apostles Creed.

        April 14, 2023 at 6:41 pm
      • editor


        Well spotted! That error is a shocker, coming from the pen of an archbishop.

        Cardinal Newman is among those saints who condemn this error and point out that Christ cannot be separated from His Church – Christ and His Church are one: Newman teaches that Christ gave us the Church “…to save us from ingenuous speculations and reasonings of our own – the Church IS the Christian dispensation.” (i.e. the Catholic Church IS Christianity).

        Archbishop Nolan is attempting to pull this particular wool/heresy over ignorant eyes because – more likely than not – he has fallen into the error of thinking that Our Lord is a lot less hard on sin than His Church. Rubbish of course, As Pope Saint Pius X points out in Our Apostolic Mandate (1910): “… Whilst Jesus was kind to sinners and to those who went astray, He did not respect their false ideas, however sincere they might have appeared. He loved them all but he instructed them in order to convert them and save them. ”

        It’s called true charity.

        April 14, 2023 at 7:58 pm
      • Fidelis


        That’s a genius explanation from Cardinal Newman about Jesus giving us the Church to save us from having to work it all out ourselves – I am paraphrasing, LOL!

        I’ll always remember that now – The Church IS Christianity!

        April 16, 2023 at 3:24 pm
    • Leitourgos Reply


      The Catechism of the Catholic Church puts it most succinctly:

      I wonder if the Archbishop had ever read it.

      Separating Christ from his Church is one of the first refuges of the slinky.

      April 16, 2023 at 3:00 pm
      • Fidelis


        I don’t think they’re slinky, I think people genuinely don’t understand what the Church really is – that comes across in Editor’s talk to the Conference, as to why CTS is closing. People don’t know and they don’t want to know!

        I love that quote from St Joan of Arc about the Church and Christ being the same thing.

        April 16, 2023 at 3:22 pm
  • Josephine Reply

    It is hard to fathom the thinking behind this. As others have said, the obvious way to get people back to their parishes is to go to their homes on a visit and see what is keeping them from attending. If it’s apathy then the PP has to be clear and explain that membership of the Church isn’t optional, it’s God’s will for us to be Catholics.

    There is only a problem, think about it, if the priest himself doesn’t believe that! If he believes it, he will feel driven to seek out the lost sheep.

    So, I’m very sceptical about all of these projects, and this one in Glasgow is no different. If it is just another talking shop, it’s doomed to failure. Such a waste of time and money – again.

    April 12, 2023 at 11:22 pm
    • westminsterfly Reply

      You’re right to be skeptical about all these projects. They are a tacit admission that generations of Catholics haven’t received adequate Catholic instruction / formation at school, and either lapsed, or maybe some continued going to Mass out of habit, but didn’t necessarily accept all Church teaching. Coupled with the fact that Catholics should Christianise the milieu in which they live and work, not become ‘sacristy mice’, as a priest I know used to call them. He was referring to those who have little else to do other than develop or foist projects such as these on their co-religionists. Most practising Catholics simply haven’t got time to attend these projects, because they’re too busy working, raising families, dealing with their own spiritual lives, helping others, along with the usual 1001 tasks and responsibilities that life brings.

      April 13, 2023 at 1:32 pm
      • Leitourgos

        We have clericalized the laity and laicized the clergy. What a mess!

        April 16, 2023 at 4:01 pm
    • RCAVictor Reply


      Actually, it’s not that hard to fathom it: this is secularized, corporate thinking, not the thinking of the members of the Mystical Body of Christ – that true thinking has been put in a side room (along with the Tabernacle) for decades to gather dust.

      I downloaded the “Flourish” issue to read the announcement, and noticed this on the bottom of page 1:

      “Archdiocese must be

      There’s the problem in a nutshell: no interior life of prayer, no devotion, no piety, no self-examination, no sanctification – in short, no Faith. Just rah-rah, sis-boom-bah for whatever insanity the “People of God” can dream up next….without God’s input….

      Just wait until you Glaswegians get a survey in the mail, or in your inbox, with about 75 questions allegedly having to do with organizing all this rallying. I guarantee you it will have little or nothing to do with the Faith, instead relying heavily on social justice, environmental justice, inclusion, ecumenism and all the other buzz words of the apostasy.

      April 13, 2023 at 4:03 pm
      • editor

        RCA Victor,

        Outstanding! or, more accurately… outSTANDING!

        Every word a jewel!

        April 13, 2023 at 5:23 pm
      • Margaret Mary

        RCA Victor,

        I agree with editor – your comment is outstanding on this. It really is a very good interpretation of this fad for “evangelisation” projects when they are really no such thing, more vanity projects to give the illusion of action.

        As others have said, the priests need to get out and about visiting the parishioners and that way they will uncover the lapsed and if they have any skills at all, they should be able to get them thinking about returning to the faith.

        April 13, 2023 at 6:35 pm
      • Theresa Rose

        RCA Victor,

        I too agree with editor and Margaret Mary, that your comment is outstanding.

        No Faith indeed, with you have said. No interior life of prayer. No devotion. No piety, prayer life or sanctification.

        April 14, 2023 at 11:41 am
      • Leitourgos

        I cannot fault you on any of this.

        No interior life … just about sums it up.

        April 16, 2023 at 3:55 pm
  • editor Reply

    N O T I C E . . .

    This is really NOT the most urgent matter of the day, but I forgot to post it on the thread where my Conference talk was published.

    At the end of the Conference, I was presented with two beautiful bouquets. Spectacular red roses, and then another gorgeous floral display set in a cardboard “vase”.

    I was asked simply to read out the card:

    With deep gratitude from all your friends, bloggers, readers.

    However, I don’t recognise the handwriting and nobody is admitting to being the author or purchaser of this wonderful floral display, so if anyone can enlighten me, I would be very grateful. I’d like to offer my personal thanks to the “friend, blogger, reader” responsible for such a thoughtful, kind presentation.

    I’ll post this notice on the Conference talk thread as well, in the hope that the “guilty party” sees it at some point and owns up 😀

    For now, be assured of my sincere gratitude – I was very touched to receive both bouquets.

    April 13, 2023 at 3:50 pm
    • RCAVictor Reply


      If it had been from me, it would have been a box of the finest chocolates….:-) (With a fortune cookie, whose little message revealed the latest population figure of Glasgow…)

      April 13, 2023 at 4:06 pm
      • editor

        RCA Victor,

        Shucks! You DO know how to get a gal’s attention 😀

        As for the population of Glasgow – it remains exactly as I told you when I met you at the airport all those years ago… “me, and some other people” 😀

        April 13, 2023 at 5:26 pm
  • RCAVictor Reply

    On a somewhat related note, a local radio show talk host was just now interviewing a woman from “Catholic Vote” about the latest revelation in an ongoing FBI scandal, that the American Police State, aka the Justice Department, is monitoring traditional Catholic parishes and even placing agents in some of them – including sedevacantist parishes.

    Very interesting that they have not directed their tyrannical gaze towards Novus Ordo parishes – which tends to confirm the study that Westminsterfly posted above about the failure to evangelize – or should I say catechize – the laity. “Hey, we don’t need to worry about Novus Ordo Catholics voting for Trump!” says the Federal Bureau of Intimidation.

    At a Deanery meeting in our diocese several months ago, one of our [traditional] parishioners got up and gave an eloquent little speech, at the end of which she said “No Catholic can ever vote for a pro-abortion candidate.” Several people heard someone at another table gasp and say “WHAT??”

    Need I say more?

    April 13, 2023 at 7:40 pm
  • Laura Reply

    RCA Victor,

    No, you needn’t say another word! That is the say things are right now – it’s shocking. At one time, the least that could be expected was that Catholics opposed the murder of the unborn. Not any more. It will take more than this one million pound vanity project to change things now, IMHO. Glasgow’s motto is “Let Glasgow flourish by the preaching of Thy Word and the praising of Thy Name” – but not even a million pounds will make that happen now, it’s too late, by far.

    April 13, 2023 at 8:11 pm
  • Tim Reply

    I think it is far too late now. A return to Tradition would help to some degree. Traditional groups seem to produce vocations, converts and generally have large families. The traditional movement does attract young men who are an underrepresented demographic within the Church.
    However, I don’t see any parishes particularly thriving, at least from the LMS, SSPX and FSSP churches I have attended.
    Secularisation cannot be overturned within our generation. Generally Mass is boring. Most go due to indoctrination, tradition, a social activity or culture.

    April 13, 2023 at 9:05 pm
    • editor Reply


      In the Summorum Pontificum parish where I attend Mass, I am astonished at the number of large (very large, in some cases!) young families in attendance, so the Traditional Mass seems to be drawing the next generation, Deo gratias!

      In general, though, I agree with you and things are unlikely to improve in any meaningful sense until after the Consecration of Russia. The problem is supernatural, and so, fittingly, is the cure.

      April 13, 2023 at 10:29 pm
      • Toby le Rone

        Forgive my ignorance but hasn’t Russia been consecrated already and how would the consecration of Russia, cause people in the Archdiocese of Glasgow go to Mass?

        Personally, I’d be more interested to know exactly what a million pounds buys you, in terms of evangelism – Is it venue hire? marketing materials? guest speakers? stipends for more missionary priests from overseas?

        Certainly, if there are 20 parishes in Glasgow earmarked for closure because they have -£50k worth of running costs debts or overspend, then surely all of them can be kept open with a spare 1 million lying around?

        April 14, 2023 at 10:13 am
      • editor


        Your ignorance is forgiven!

        We discussed the consecration of Ukraine and Russia on the thread linked below – check it out and then ask yourself whatever happened to that period of world peace that Our Lady promised would follow on from the Consecration of Russia (conducted in the manner which she prescribed) AND whatever happened to the conversion of that nation?

        To answer that second part of your comment about how this, the proper Consecration, would affect Glasgow – well, the diabolical disorientation afflicting the entire Church and the world right now, would be corrected and misguided bishops, like Archbishop Nolan, would come to see that throwing a million quid at talking shops won’t bring people back into the Church – he’ll “see the light”, so to speak…

        April 14, 2023 at 11:29 am
    • Leitourgos Reply

      About ten years ago, maybe more, I was invited to attend a ‘rally’, for want of a better word, organised by one of the traditional orders in France. I simply could not believe the sheer number of Catholic families with numerous children. What on the surface was all bells and smells actually had rock-solid vocations and families at its core.

      What should never be forgotten is that the Catholic faith is first and foremost true. When it is preached and taught properly, people are converted.

      Going back to the event I mentioned at the beginning, it was no talking shop. Mass and Vespers had homilies, but all in all Christ was the one doing the talking.

      April 16, 2023 at 4:12 pm
  • Nicky Reply

    Glasgow has been a write-off for years and years now. We’ve had one terrible archbishop after another, I say “terrible” because their focus is on gimmicks like these projects, instead of on building up the faith in the individuals through the church structures, parishes for starters. It is depressing to see Archbishop Nolan going down the same failed track. Why don’t they learn from the mistakes of their predecessors? It’s really unbelievable.

    April 14, 2023 at 9:28 am
    • editor Reply


      It’s our old friend enemy, spiritual blindness which prevents Archbishop Nolan (and his predecessors) from recognising the truth about evangelisation/lapsation/apostasy, and how to fix it. That’s why they don’t learn from past mistakes. They don’t (literally) see them as “mistakes”. Tragic, really.

      April 14, 2023 at 11:34 am
      • Leitourgos

        I have come to the point where I believe that there is no turning this around — not from a human standpoint, anyway. Maybe God is using people like Nolan and his cronies to run the thing into the ground so that only a faithful remnant will be left from which to begin again.

        Do I really believe this to be the case? I would love to say that I don’t, but in my heart of hearts I think I do.

        Sad times, indeed.

        April 16, 2023 at 3:48 pm
  • Tim Reply

    I’ve seen it all before.
    * everyone at Mass wears a nane sticker so we can “get to know each other”
    *theology on tap. We sit in the pub with the priest who gives a short talk. All the same old faces go as a it’s a social life for them. Same with ALPHA.
    * egan publishes a ten year strategy where we become intentional disciples. Really?? Most go to Mass, “get communion” and [leave]. Meanwhile the Diocesan Operating Officer gets £100k a year.

    All a waste of time.

    Let’s face it, going to Mass in the vast majority of parishes is boring. No groups for men in their 20s, liturgy dictated by committees formed of old [people] horrendous music, nothing other worldly…
    At least the Anglicans have historic buildings [Ed: mostly ours!] and taste unlike novus ordo priests. Evensong beats a novus ordo hands down.

    What should bishops do? Plan for the inevitable decline. Support traditional groups. At least they bring in the money!

    April 14, 2023 at 11:52 am
  • Faith of Our Fathers Reply

    To know that this is the same Man who cancelled Latin Masses along with his fellow Bishops where certainly in my Parish the Latin Mass on Sunday was really flourishing is astonishing to say the least . Maybe it would actually be better sending His Money to Arthur Roche as a bribe. After all if the Chinese Communists can pay off the High Heid Yins in The Vatican maybe we could to. Of course the good Archbishop needs to have a spirit of wanting to Evangelise and am sure Latin Mass is the way to do it . What am i missing with this Man. As i said our TLMass before it was shut down by our Good Bishop had approx 50 at Morning Mass. I would bet my Grannies Pension Book that the Good Archbishop wont get 50 Evangelised with this Gimmick . No matter how much listening he does ,which i suppose this phrase comes from this useless Sinnod .

    April 14, 2023 at 5:52 pm
    • Bernie Reply


      That’s what I was thinking when I read that Flourish news – if the archbishop cared about evangelisation, he wouldn’t be closing down the Latin Masses. If he closes Balornock, we’ll know for sure he’s scamming it, because there are three on Sundays, all very packed Masses and several on weekdays.

      April 15, 2023 at 1:07 pm
  • westminsterfly Reply

    Just as an aside – whenever I see a picture of that Archbishop of Glasgow, he always looks like a rabbit caught in car headlights. He always looks petrified! Or maybe he’s just not photogenic!

    April 15, 2023 at 3:49 pm
    • Josephine Reply


      Sometimes he’s grinning from ear to ear – makes me wonder what he’s got to be so happy about, apart from having a million quid in the bank, LOL! I can’t get the pic to post directly onto the page but here’s a link to him smiling.

      Oops! Not there, but if you Google, you will find him smiling!

      April 15, 2023 at 4:11 pm
  • Leitourgos Reply

    Reading all this brought to mind a small publication, the exact title of which I cannot recall (I used to have a copy, but I lent it out and it never came back), containg two essays, one by Rod Pead of Christian Order fame, the other by a certain Patricia McKeever. Rod Pead’s essay has to be the most eloquent, thoroughly researched and utterly devastating critique of the Scottish hierarcy ever written. It is said that it moved Cardinal Winning to rage bordering on apoplexy.

    I mention this because those of us who have read this publication, and have followed the Newsletter and the Blog almost from the beginning, can only say, ‘Please, not again! Have mercy!’ What is required here is really very simple and costs nothing: wholesale conversion and penance. Until this happens and happens publicly, not a ha’penny will be forthcoming from this direction.

    Editor would render a great service if she could arrange for the publication I refer to above to be available, perhaps as a downloadable PDF, on the website. Then all you young things out there will be able to see how these years (a quarter of a century, more or less) have been a constant re-enactment of the parable of the blind leading the blind — the same script, just with different actors.

    April 16, 2023 at 2:48 pm
    • Laura Reply


      I remember those Christian Order articles – I took out a subscription years ago, but the articles are always quite long and I don’t always have time to read them through. The articles about Scotland were brilliant though – and yes, I remember reading that the Cardinal was livid with rage when he read them. I tried to find them on the CO website but although they are listed, there’s no link to any of the material to read now. I Googled and found the page though. There’s nothing available in pdf – you have to pay for the print copy, although there are some editorials and features available on the site to read. They’re always great.

      April 16, 2023 at 3:29 pm
      • Leitourgos

        What I am referring to may have appeared with the Christian Order imprint, but it was a stand-alone publication and not part of the journal.

        April 16, 2023 at 3:51 pm
      • Leitourgos


        Thank you for this. I can now see from the index of Christian Order for 1998 that the publication I am referring to reproduced the two Pead articles which appeared originally in the April and May editions, together with the article by P. McKeever which also appeared originally in the May edition.

        I have a nagging suspicion, however, that Pead’s articles received a slightly different title when they were combined for the stand-alone edition I refer to.

        I renember being thrilled by Pead’s writing. He articulated what so many of us had been thinking for so long. What I cannot believe is that it was all twenty-five years ago! Where have the years gone?

        April 16, 2023 at 10:49 pm
      • editor


        You bring back wonderful memories of the publication of Rod’s outstanding articles about the Scottish scene in Christian Order. I was all but thrown out of the “Catholic” bookshop in Glasgow when I asked them to take a few free copies to give away – I seem to have a habit of getting myself banned from all the best “Catholic” places!

        Rod is also an outstanding speaker. He addressed one of the Pro Ecclesia et Pontifice Conferences in the Methodist Hall in London – WHAT a speech. It drew heckles from enemies in the audience and no wonder. It was his writing, on stilts! So, thanks for the walk down Memory Lane – much appreciated.

        As you will see in the May/June newsletter, I urge readers to subscribe to Christian Order, which can be done via the website or by post. I also offer two suggestions for future blogging – unfortunately, there is just nothing in the UK, so both are American and both worth supporting.

        Thanks again, for making my day!

        April 16, 2023 at 11:02 pm
  • Leitourgos Reply

    Thank you, Editor.

    April 16, 2023 at 11:21 pm
  • Athanasius Reply

    I’ve been quite busy with work and the garden recently (that time of year again!) so haven’t been keeping up with the blog as I should. I was just about to write up an article on Archbishop Nolan’s heretical “Letter” when it occurred to me that I should really check the blog first to see if the subject had been debated already. I see it has and most of the comments hit most of the nails firmly on the head.

    I just wanted to mention a few more obvious errors in that Letter which demonstrate 100% that Archbishop Nolan no longer holds the Catholic Faith. He’s a clever so and so, I’ll give him that, typically expert in Modernist sophistry.

    Note, for example, how he opens his letter with this statement: “Looking to the future in the Archdiocese we must first of all look to the past. In particular, to the commission that Jesus Christ gave to the Church when at the end of the Gospel he says “Go out to the whole world and proclaim the good news.”

    What Our Lord actually said was “All power is given to me in heaven and on earth. Going therefore, teach ye all nations; baptising them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and behold I am with you all days, even to the consummation of the world.” Matthew 28 -18-20

    In this latter (faithfully translated) text, Our Lord clearly confirms His divine authority and power before instructing His Apostles to go forth and teach a specific supernatural body of doctrine He has revealed to them. He does not entrust this evangelisation to “the Church” in her lay members but rather to His Apostles, the first Pope and prelates.

    Archbishop Nolan obviously finds this traditional Catholic translation obstructive of his Modernist ambitions, so he sanitises it to a meaningless Protestant one-liner to accompany his equally hollow references to evangelisation and synodality.

    Next up, we get this guff: “As we look to the future it means that the Archdiocese must be outward looking…”

    This is a nod and wink to Pope Francis’ expressed heterodox view that the Traditional Catholic Faith handed down and faithfully observed for 2000 years up to that fateful Second Vatican Catastrophe was “inward looking”, “closed” and “insular”. In other words, our universal Church believing in one Lord, one faith and one baptism for salvation should become a globalist Church of humanism absent of dogma and ever-evolving in doctrine to accommodate different beliefs and moral fluidity. I think we may be assured that part of that £1 million will go towards programming the faithful to accept access to Holy Communion for those living immoral lives outside of marriage. This task will no doubt fall to those “Deanery Councils” with their lay interlopers in “synodality”, the latest fad to nudge the holy Church closer to the Protestant sect model. This is what is meant by “new evangelisation initiatives” and “new ideas of how to reach out to others”.

    The Catholic Church never behaved in this shallow manner throughout her sacred history. She simply taught the truths of the faith handed down and evangelised the world through her missionary orders, which have since been abolished. Let’s not forget that this present Pope has declared true evangelisation, that is, Catholic proselytising, such as the missionaries practiced for many centuries, often at the cost of martyrdom, to be a mortal sin. So, what they actually mean by “evangelisation” is anyone’s guess. It’s certainly not about going out to preach the Catholic Faith as necessary for salvation, that’s for certain.

    Now comes the heresy: “We need to remember, of course, that what we are preaching is not the Catholic Church, what we are preaching is Jesus Christ…”

    Apart from the sheer stupidity of this declaration – for it is quite established that Jesus Christ is synonymous with His Catholic Church, His “Mystical Body”, there is, in these words of Archbishop Nolan, a very evident denial of the infallible dogma ‘extra ecclesiam nulla salus’ (outside the Church no salvation).

    He then goes on to compound his grave error in these words: “Sometimes the Church and its members have been a counter sign, discouraging others from coming to Christ…”

    If he had restricted himself to making this observation about members of the Church, then we could scarcely argue with his observation. But he doesn’t restrict himself to the Church’s members, he includes the Church in his accusation, “the Spotless Bride of Christ” which is incapable of infidelity to her Master by reason of His divine promise. This again is heresy, pure and simple.

    All in all, reading this letter of Archbishop Nolan it is clear that the evangelisation he speaks of is not Catholic evangelisation. He has the same idea of evangelisation as Pope Francis, which is the evangelisation of Modernist thinkers trying to turn our Lord’s divine Church into a human Church without fixed dogmas, doctrines of morals. They in fact are the “counter sign” who preach a doctrine contrary to that which has been handed down, which is why the Church is in the present dreadful state it is.

    This is why they hate and detest the ancient Latin Mass of the Church that sanctified the saints and martyrs of two millennia, because it is unambiguously Catholic and unambiguously sacrificial, a stumbling block to their false ecumenism, false inter-religious initiatives and moral indifference. Like Luther, they are presently attempting to ruthlessly purge the Church of this ancient and hallowed rite of Mass. Francis has made great personal steps forward in this dastardly plan and Archbishop Nolan has managed to eradicate the Mass from Sacred Heart in Bridgeton with a view to wiping out other venues in due course. These are not the actions of holy and pastoral men, they are the actions of enemies of the faith, the real counter sign to Christ.

    And if they are a counter sign to Christ and his Catholic Church, then who exactly are they evangelising for? Anyone other than Christ surely must be called antichrist!

    April 18, 2023 at 12:15 am
    • Michaela Reply


      I was with you all the way and then some until I got to your final line – I think we need to be careful about suggesting an archbishop is “antichrist” – I think abandoning the faith is different from being “antichrist” – I say that due to the linking of that term with the Anti-Christ. I think you can be anti the Catholic faith which is to be opposed to Christ, I concede but the terminology can be confusing.

      That said, I think your comment is outstanding. So, what’s new LOL!

      April 18, 2023 at 1:20 pm
      • Athanasius


        If you re-read th elast line of my comment you’ll see that I don’t call Archbishop Nolan “antichrist”. What I actually said, and I stand by this, is that if they don’t serve Jesus Christ in truth then it has to follow that they serve antichrist. Our Lord Himself said “those who are not for me are against me”. It’s a very clear choice, they either serve the Fathe of Truth or the “Father of Lies”.

        Besides that, there is no question that their attempts to wipe out the ancient Mass of the saints and martyrs is straight from Hell proper. It’s this hatred of the true sacrifice of Our Lord, so perfectly expressed in the Latin Mass, that really betrays their wickedness.

        April 18, 2023 at 2:35 pm
    • Leitourgos Reply


      You are quite right. Nolan does not have a Catholic understanding of the relationship between Christ and his Church, for the reasons stated by you and in my quotation from the CCC above.

      But what is really disgusting here, in my opinion, is how very serious doctrinal deviation and the sacred duty to evangelize are employed so nonchalantly to spin what is for the Archbishop, the clergy of Glasgow, Catholic schools and the laity, a defeat of the first magnitude.

      What the Archbishop is really saying is that the game is up. More than five decades of mismanagement at every level have destroyed a Catholic identity built up over centuries. Glasgow is left with an ever-dwindling band of so-called faithful who know almost nothing about their faith, not least because successive Archbishops and at least two generations of priests have abdicated tgeir responsibility to teach it.

      If this were really about evangelization, the Archbishop would begin by insisting on doctrinal orthodoxy at every level. After all, how are we to encounter Christ if not in the orthodoxy of the faith? Which Christ exactly are we talking about? The liberal Protestant version or the Catholic version? The fact that money takes centre stage in all of this is highly suspicious and a harbinger of failure and more desolation to come. No amount of money is going to solve the Archdiocese’s problems; what is required is wholesale conversion, beginning with the Archbishop and his clergy.

      Make no mistake about it, Nolan is spinning defeat. The game is up. He knows it and we know it. The only people who seem not to know it work at Flourish and have a vested interest in refraining from asking the boss difficult questions. This is servile journalism at its worst; nay, it is mere propaganda.

      The Church in Glasgow left the cliff-edge behind it a long time ago. It is now in free-fall and will soon be smashed to smithereens upon impact with the terrible reality of this wicked world and its evil Prince. From the wreckage a faithful remnant will emerge which will look back in horror not only on Nolan, Tartaglia, Conti and Winning, but on the clergy in general (with some very noble exceptions) and on Catholic schools whose demise, I predict, is not far off. (Doubtless that too will be spun, probably as a great victory for our shared national identity.)

      When I began following publications charting the so-called crisis in the Church, an analogy was often made which drew on the fact that a frog will sit in a pan of cold water while the temperature is increased until it boils to death, just as long as the temperature is increased slowly. As it is with the frog, so it is with the Church in Glasgow, clergy and laity.

      The clergy over several decades has become increasingly worldly. Worldliness brought with it — inevitably — scandals, to the point where the the faithful, having reached saturation point, no longer consider it scandalous that senior clergy should abandon the priesthood, often in middle-age, having lived double lives for decades, to say nothing of those who have engaged in gross immorality, giving rise to public scandal, and are still in post as if nothing had ever happened. If you want to find the cause of the widespread indifference of the laity to the crisis in the Church, look no further than the clergy and the bishops who failed in their duty to sanctify them. The result is that the laity are indifferent to the holiness of their shepherds, and vice-versa. But this is the road to sure spiritual death, yet we are to believe that such a Church is capable of evangelization! Onlyba fool could think so. Such a Church is in its death throes and needs to be evangelized.

      April 19, 2023 at 2:49 am
  • westminsterfly Reply

    If the Archbishop of Glasgow wants to get evangelisation sorted out, then he needs to start at school level: Never mind ‘challenging’ – when it comes to secular ‘values’ vs Catholic doctrine, the latter is non-negotiable, and the Archbishop should be declaring that loudly and proudly.

    April 18, 2023 at 11:44 am
    • Michaela Reply


      That is shocking but I can’t pretend to be surprised. The LGBT+ lobby have infiltrated Catholic schools for a long time now. The bishops know it but they obviously don’t object. There can be a couple of reasons for that both of which included “they’ve lost the faith”.

      April 18, 2023 at 1:22 pm
  • Athanasius Reply


    It’s hard to get that message across to someone who no longer holds the Catholic Faith, as in the case of Archbishop Nolan. I’m not being nasty saying that, it’s just a tragic statement of fact. I think we have to just be open enough now to declare that a very large number in the Catholic hierarchy are apostates from the faith.

    April 18, 2023 at 1:17 pm
    • Michaela Reply


      The bloggers here have long since declared that the Scottish Bishops are apostates from the faith. That is no longer up for grabs. The thing is, as editor said in her talk at the Conference, nobody seems to care!

      April 18, 2023 at 1:24 pm
      • Athanasius


        I agree. This begs the question of which is worse in Our Lord’s eyes; the apostasy of the bishops or the indifference of priests and faithful to that apostasy? It’s six and half a dozen, I think, but we should also consider that many priests and faithful don’t really know the faith they claim to practice. In some cases this is due to invincible ignorance, but in the majority it’s down to lack of interest. It will go very hard with the latter at their judgement, of that there is little doubt, for their indifference has helped destroy so much of the precious faith handed down. These prefer just to obey their corrupt clerical superiors because it’s easier and they like Father to think well of them. Not I!!

        April 18, 2023 at 2:42 pm
  • Athanasius Reply April 18, 2023 at 11:27 pm

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