Francis Campbell, Vice Chancellor of St Mary’s Catholic University, London

The fires in Australia have been devastating.

Naturally, we all turn to Pope Francis for advice. Speaking about the environment, Pope Francis said, as far back as 2015, “Somebody ought to DO something, URGENTLY!”

Isn’t the Pope just fantastic?

8 thoughts on “Francis Campbell, Vice Chancellor of St Mary’s Catholic University, London

  1. This has to have been a self-parody. Of all the people to quote on the subject of the environment, the Pope in 2015 is 29,000th on the list. It’s not even that he said anything useful, or new, or challenging. He just said what thousands of other people have been saying, using pretty much the same words, for the last twenty years.

    The question I would have for Francis Campbell is this. What would he think about the environment if the Pope had said nothing? To be honest, both possible answers are troubling. If his thoughts were not changed by the encyclical, why did he bring it up today, as its uselessness is demonstrated by this. On the other hand, if his thoughts were changed by the encyclical, what the hell was he listening to before 2015? Does he not have a mind of his own?

    I wonder also what he thinks about Antipope Benny weighing in on things. With two popes offering contrary positions (on celibacy for priests), what will happen to Campbell’s brain now?


  2. Not the best day to be mentioning the Pope, given that the old failed one has come out of retirement to go public about priestly celibacy and thus muddy the waters for the present incumbent. What a hypocrite, given that the Catholic Church keenly welcomed disillusioned C of E priests even if married. Thus there are already married RC priests, so what’s the problem?


  3. Oh dear is that the best Campbell can come up with? Really?

    A far more interesting subject would have been that of Ratzingers interference and insistence that catholic priests must be celibate, that celibacy must remain mandatory and that priests must not be allowed to take wives. Apparently Frances is considering waiving that requirement in South America where the rcc is struggling to find enough priests. Or is it because the pope knows that child rape is a huge under reported problem in South America and that child rape is an inevitable outcome of priestly celebacy.

    Three minutes of Cambell’s musings on priestly celibacy would have given TftD an edginess it desperately needs. And I am sure that Campbell, one time Tony Blair crony, British Ambassador to the Holy See and academic must have strong views on the subject.


  4. My immediate reaction was the same as Steve’s. Does Campbell wait for Papa Frankie’s unoriginal little view about an issue before daring to have a view about it himself? If not, why make such a song and dance about it now?

    Campbell mentioned in passing that he’s off to Oz himself in a month’s time. Apparently he’s been appointed Vice-Chancellor at The University of Notre Dame Australia. Let’s just hope that some of Australia still exists by the time he arrives. I expect this means that we’ll be deprived of his occasional wisdom on TftD for the foreseeable future.


  5. I don’t think the Pope can claim the moral high ground on environmental issues, given that his Church continues to ban all forms of contraception, save those of complete abstinence and the infamous ‘rhythm’ system. Over-population is enormously damaging to the planet, resulting among other things in loss of habitat and destruction of species, pollution and the over-use of natural resources. The suffering caused to women without the means to control their own fertility and the unwanted, starving children that result from this should be a matter of shame for the Church and its male hierarchy.

    The issue of married priests is not going to go away, no matter what the Pope decides about the situation in South America. The Church is effectively shooting itself in the foot if it remains unyielding on this matter, because without priests its ability to spread its message is severely diminished. At the heart of it all lies the institutional misogyny of the Catholic Church. Until that is acknowledged and dealt with, it seems unlikely there will be many concessions made to the ban on married priests, except in the most desperate of circumstances.


    1. AndyM raised this yesterday. What I want to know is, are the priests who broke the seal of the confessional still serving as priests? If they are then they certainly should not be. According to the church’s own rules, they should have been immediately removed and banished from the church. If this penalty was not applied, then why not?

      This ought to be causing a considerable outcry in the RCC. I’ve checked the Catholic Herald, Catholic Universe and the Tablet. They all seem to be strangely silent on the issue.


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