BY SCO Admin | June 14 2013 | comments icon 1 COMMENT     print icon print

1B-FR-TOM-WHITE

Adoption agency to fight legal challenge

St Margaret’s Children and Family Care Society future plans announced at Mass and fun day

Supporters of Glasgow’s St Margaret’s Children and Family Care Society have vowed to continue fighting for the future of the closure-threatened Catholic adoption agency, which Archbishop Philip Tartaglia of Glasgow described as ‘a treasure of the Church in Scotland.’

Hundreds of supporters of St Margaret’s, the last Catholic adoption agency in the country, joined together at Glasgow’s St Andrew’s Cathedral on Sunday, where they heard about the agency’s plans to relocate to better accommodation within the city, a move, which it is hoped, will help secure the adoption agency’s future.

St Margaret’s is facing a challenge to its existence following an intervention by the Scottish Charities Regulator, OSCR.

Earlier this year, it was found that St Margaret’s policy of having children placed preferentially with a mother and father within the stable union of marriage, in accordance with the teaching of the Catholic Church, has a negative impact on cohabiting and same-sex couples.

At Sunday’s annual Mass for St Margaret’s, Fr Tom White (above), chairman of the agency, confirmed that, in September, the adoption agency would seek to have the ruling overturned at the Scottish Charities Appeal Tribunal.

If it is not resolved at this stage, the case will move to the Court of Session, he confirmed.

Fr White has also spoken about St Margaret’s plans to move to a new base at Glasgow’s Newton Place, where they will open a new family centre, which will be able to offer improved services to families.

“This bold and brave step, which has been many years in the planning and execution, marks a great leap forward for the society, where we can offer better educational and meeting resources for our families and other associated groups,” he said.

Archbishop Philip Tartaglia spoke of the widespread support the agency is receiving.

“St Margaret’s does nothing but good work for children and families of all faiths and none,” Archbishop Tartaglia said. “The whole Church is united in support for its work and we hope that common sense will prevail, and it will be allowed to continue to serve children in Scotland who need loving families.”

At Sunday’s Mass, many supporters of St Margaret’s, including parents and children who have benefited from the agency’s adoption services, gathered to show their ongoing support for the organisation and take part in the annual family fun day after the Mass.

Patricia Connelly, a parishioner of St Mary’s Church, in Calton, Glasgow, is one such supporter who attended Sunday’s Mass. Ms Connelly was placed for adoption with St Margaret’s in 1959 and spoke about being brought up by ‘loving parents’ with Christian values.

“It was a gift from God for me to have been chosen and placed with the right people by St Margaret’s,” Ms Connelly said after Sunday’s Mass. “I am very sad to hear about all that is happening at St Margaret’s at this time. I hope everybody affiliated with St Margaret’s will pledge their prayers and support in the coming months. St Margaret’s is not just a society, it is an extended family.”

Brian McGuigan, a board member of St Margaret’s, spoke of his appreciation of the support St Margaret’s is continuing to receive and highlighted that the threat hanging over the society has galvanised the wider Catholic community.

“The ultimate irony is that apparently in the name of tolerance, societies such as St Margaret’s are no longer to be tolerated,” Mr McGuigan said.

— martin@sconews.co.uk

 

— This story ran in full in the June 14 print edition of the SCO

 

Comments - One Response

  1. KP says:

    This is a huge scandal and why the national newspapers are not making more of this is beyond me! (Actually, it’s not a surprise. The media are totally behind the destabilisation of society and strongly promote the “me me me” culture.) It also highlights the law’s inability to use common sense. I think everyone – without exception – agrees that St. Margaret’s provides a first class service to children and does a power of good. However, there isn’t anything in the law that protects them. But because some aggressive secularist decides that St. Margaret’s ethos is doing such harm to the world (which it isn’t, because it’s only on a point of law that this is being made possible) that it should be shut down. Absolutely ludicrous! Any law and any society that allows this to happen to such an organisation is morally bankrupt and should be thoroughly ashamed!

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