Thursday 23 July 2009

Does Tony Blair really have "a very intense and very deep faith"?

Fr Michael Seed (pictured with Cherie Blair), a Franciscan priest well-known for his relations with prominent people, has claimed in an interview with France 24 that Tony Blair "has a very intense and very deep faith", adding that Mr Blair has been an "honorary Catholic" (implying a de facto Catholic) since his marriage to Cherie in 1980. I think Fr Seed needs to ask both himself and Mr Blair: How does Mr Blair square his 30-year-old purported Catholic faith with his almost equally long public record of attacking Catholic teaching on pro-life and pro-family issues? Since Mr Blair's reception into the Catholic Church, not only has he refused to repudiate his anti-life/anti-family political record, he has also attacked the Catholic Church's teaching on pro-family issues.

Elsewhere in the interview Fr Seed referred in passing to 19th century anti-Catholic laws (largely dormant) under which Catholics can in certain circumstances be jailed for witnessing to their Catholic faith in public. What Fr Seed neglected to mention was that because of the laws, policies and practices supported by Mr Blair whilst in parliament, additional rules now apply to Catholics, bringing down the force of the law upon:
If Tony Blair had voted for laws permitting the killing specifically of Franciscans or Jews or people from ethnic minorities, and refused to repudiate such laws, would Fr Seed still then say that Tony Blair has "has a very intense and very deep faith"? I suggest that Fr Seed read the masterly analysis of Tony Blair's faith by Monsignor Michel Schooyans, one of the Vatican's leading scholars.

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