BY Ryan McDougall | March 8 | comments icon 0 COMMENTS     print icon print


Catholic MSP is welcomed as Missio Scotland’s first patron

A Scottish MSP has been welcomed as the first ever patron of the Scottish branch of Pope Francis’ mission aid agency.

Labour MSP for Central Scotland Elaine Smith will contribute to Missio Scotland’s online, digital and print output to outline her role and work as patron, as well as the wider work of the charity.

She will also provide opportunities for school pupils to get involved with the charity and will attend the annual Friends of Missio Charity Ball as a special guest.

The charity decided to ask Mrs Smith to become patron due to her decision to vote in accordance with her Catholic Faith in parliament, as well as her support for Catholic schools in Scotland.

Mrs Smith said: “It’s an honour and a privilege to be asked to help the work of Missio in Scotland by becoming a patron.

“I’m looking forward to helping spread the word about the good work Missio do all over the world and helping raise the profile of the Pope’s charity for overseas mission amongst parliamentarians.”


Long-term support

Mrs Smith is involved in cross-party groups on freedom of religion and belief, health inequalities and aid for Malawi.

She has also been a supporter of Missio since her school days at St Patrick’s Primary School in Coatbridge.

Martin Mann, who recently joined Missio Scotland as their education outreach, formation and fundraising officer, said: “I am eager to bring people on board who can help support Missio Scotland’s good work, especially during this year of extraordinary mission which will be marked in October.

“Elaine was my local MSP for a number of years and is well known in the community as someone who is committed to helping those in need.

“We contacted Elaine and discussed the role of patron with her. I was pleasantly surprised by the speed and enthusiasm with which she agreed to take on the role. She has already started to assist Missio.”

National director of Missio Scotland Fr Vincent Lockhart said: “I have known Elaine for many years and have always been impressed by her integrity and the manner in which she has served her constituents.

“That integrity and commitment to service were clearly inspired by Catholic social teaching and Missio is very honoured and grateful that she has agreed to serve as our first patron.”

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