Immigrant Poles Fill Pews in Scotland

St. Mary’s Cathedral in Edinburgh has been filled to capacity, and then some, as the influx of Polish immigrants has roughly doubled the size of the congregation, the Scotsman reported.

The cathedral holds two additional Masses each week in Polish for an estimated 3,000 extra church-goers.

One regular Massgoer at St Mary’s, who did not want to be named, said: “I think it’s great that we have such a strong Polish community. It seems to me that they’ve got their priorities right: They worship God before money. It doesn’t matter where people are from. We’re all brothers and sisters.”

Member of Parliament Bids to End Anti-Catholicism

Member of Parliament and Catholic convert John Gummer, below, introduced a bill that would end statutory opposition to the Church and its members, the East Anglia Daily Times reported.

Gummer said it was deeply offensive that the heir to the British throne could not marry a Catholic without abandoning his right to succession. Gummer’s bill, which has cross-party support, will be given a second reading in June.

“The heir to the throne can marry a Mormon, a Methodist, or a Muslim, but not a Catholic. In today’s society, such discrimination should be swept away,” said Gummer.

“If such a law was proposed now, it would quite rightly be called discrimination and would get no support. That’s why historic opposition to Roman Catholicism, which started when King Henry VIII created the Church of England to enable him to divorce, should be ended.”

St. Mary’s Sheds Reformation’s Grip

Students who graduate from St. Mary’s College University in Twickenham will be the first to receive a degree from an English Catholic university since the Reformation, Independent Catholic News reported.

St. Mary’s was first established in Strawberry Hill in 1925 by the Vincentian Fathers as a men’s teacher training college. Women were admitted for the first time in 1966. The British government granted St. Mary's the power to award degrees in January.

“St. Mary’s has a long and proud tradition as a Roman Catholic place of learning where great emphasis is placed on the whole person,” said university spokesman Father Rob Marshall. “This tradition is being renewed with vigor and vision as we celebrate our university college title and look forward to full university status in the future.”