BY Ian Dunn | October 6 | comments icon 0 COMMENTS     print icon print


Scotland welcomes nuncio to Edinburgh for legal profession’s annual Red Mass

The UK nuncio was ‘optimistic’ on the future of Scotland’s Faith

The apostolic nuncio to the UK said he detects ‘increasing optimism’ about the future of the Catholic Church in 21st century Scotland, despite western society losing ‘its age-old Christian convictions.’

Archbishop Edward Adams, the veteran Vatican diplomat who took up his post in June, was paying his first official visit to Scotland for the annual Red Mass that marks the beginning of the legal year.

The archbishop said he was delighted to be in Edinburgh, ‘undoubtedly one of the most beautiful capital cities of the world,’ to celebrate the October 1 Mass in St Mary’s Cathedral. However he warned the assembled solicitors, barristers and judges that they were in a time when western society is rapidly losing, or transforming, its age-old Christian convictions, and in this ‘our laws are drifting away from the foundations in which for centuries they were anchored.’

“It is a time for Christians to be aware of what is happening and to contribute to the effort of making others aware,” he said.

He went on to note that laws that did not mirror the will of God can ‘become weapons in the hands of those who wish to commandeer power within a society, whether through intimidation, force, or the manipulation of majority opinion.’

Celebrating Mass alongside Archbishop Leo Cushley of St Andrews & Edinburgh Archdiocese and Archbishop Emeritus Mario Conti of Glasgow, the 78-year-old native of Philadelphia also thanked Archbishop Cushley for being ‘such a gracious and generous host upon my first visit to Edinburgh.’

“During my three day visit I could clearly witness the Church’s significant and benign influence upon ­Scotland’s past but, more importantly perhaps, I was also able to detect increasing optimism about the future of the Catholic Church in 21st century Scotland,” he said. “That was very heartening indeed.”

Archbishop Leo Cushley said it was a great pleasure to welcome the UK nuncio to Edinburgh, noting that although he had ‘spent many years in the diplomatic service of the Holy See, serving in many countries throughout the world, I know this is the very first time you find yourself in Edinburgh—I hope you like it!’

“Know that you are most welcome to Scotland and to its capital,” he said. “We look forward to seeing you here often and to you affording us the opportunity to show our communion with and filial affection for the Successor of Peter in the See of Rome.

“Kindly let the Holy Father know of the esteem in which he is held here, and of our heartfelt prayers for him in his universal ministry.”

In attendance at the Mass this year were many senior members of the Scottish judiciary including Lord Drummond-Young, Lord Uist, Lady Carmichael, Lady Rae, Lord Matthews, Lord Glennie, Lord Brodie and Lord Arthurson.

Also present was Gordon Jackson QC, dean of the Faculty of Advocates, and Alison di Rollo QC, Solicitor General for Scotland.

There were also representatives from the Faculty of Advocates, the Law Society of Scotland and the Society of Writers to Her Majesty’s Signet, as well as sheriffs, QCs, advocates, solicitors, trainee solicitors and law students from across Scotland.

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