No Catholics need apply, says Blair…

THE Prime Minister has refused to act on Alex Salmond’s call for the British Government to repeal the Act of Settlement, which bars Catholics from becoming king or queen of England and prohibits members of the royal family who marry Catholics from taking the throne.

  • Crataegus

    Isn’t it a pity our SF MPs were not there in support

  • Crataegus

    On the Act of Settlement ofcourse it should go.

  • bertie

    I know this is being picky but in the article it says that the Duke of Kent has lost his right to the throne. As I understnad it he hasn’t. I beleive that it is very specific he cannot be an RC or marry one. He didn’t marry one as she wasn’t one when he married her.

  • Hmmmmmmmm

    I wonder if a Protestant will ever become head of that political entity called the Vatican? Can any Protestant even apply to work there? All MOPES, SF’s, SDLPers, Lefties and other blind in one eye commentaters discuss.

  • memorystick

    Catholics also cannot become first minister of the treasury (Prime Minister)….I wonder if Gordon Brown is one?!?!?

  • merrie

    No he isn’t – his father was a protestant clergyman

  • John East Belfast

    Am i wrong in believing that this law has its roots in the fact that it says somewhere that the Pope considers his powers to be above all earthly rulers and their powers ?

    in which case Catholics also beleive this and hence a Catholic on the throne is essentially bringing the supremacy of the Vatican over the UK nation state ?

    pedantic I know but if the Catholic Church reputed such assertions then I can see no reason for the Act – Infact I see little reason for it at all but the Catholics putting their own house in order first might help things

  • kensei

    “Catholics also cannot become first minister of the treasury (Prime Minister)….I wonder if Gordon Brown is one?!?!?”

    I said this before and was told I was wrong. Can anyone confirm it one way or another?

    “in which case Catholics also beleive this and hence a Catholic on the throne is essentially bringing the supremacy of the Vatican over the UK nation state ?”

    Yeah, because the Vatican aserts control of all those Nations with Catholic leaders. Like that time there was an American one in the sixties :rolleyes:

  • OR

    His father was a Church of Scotland minister.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gordon_Brown

  • John East Belfast

    kensei

    We are talking about symbollic heads of state and why certain laws exist.

    The issue of the supremacy of parliament over kings and the resultant British consitutional monarchy is a defining and important part of British history.

    Meanwhile the Pope is the spiritual head of a billion catholics but he has no role or authority, symbolic or practical, over UK parliament.

    If this was respected then there wouldnt be an issue here at all.

    This means nothing to you and not a lot to me but as I say the Catholic should put their own house in order before mopeing about the consequences of their own actions.

    Anyhow I am not sure if this is the case so I could be barking up the wrong tree

  • John

    Funny how things in NI revolve around ‘us and them’. What will change the ‘Act of the Settlement’ is the fact that other religions are now coming to the fore in Great Britain. Islam being the strongest. What we think here in NI will have no effect on the wind of change that will rewrite the ‘Act of the Settlement’ with no religous exclusions.

  • PeterJ

    Kensei

    “Catholics also cannot become first minister of the treasury (Prime Minister)” – this may possibly? have been true once but it certainly isn’t now. You may recall that there was some debate a few years ago about whether Tony Blair would become a full convert to Catholicism – There were interviews with experts from Oxford and Cambridge about whether this would form any legal impediment to him holding office and there was total agreement that it would not.

    The ban on RCs and the monarchy is totally out of date and should be scrapped. In England and Wales, church attendance is rapidly declining and most people wouldn’t care if the act were scrapped.

    Religion is only a big issue in NI and the West of Scotland – look at the state of them!

  • Ex UUP

    Not just catholics your MOPERS, no muslims, no Jews, No Buddists, No presbyterians, NO methodists, NO baptists, etc
    Either COE or nowt

  • Catholics can’t become English monarchs but they can ride them and they often do.
    The Catholic Church was founded on the Rock of Peter (play on words by Joking Jesus) but the Anglican Church was founded on the balls of Henry V!!, who had been given his Defender of the Faith title (which the Monarchs still use) by old Redsox himself.

  • Prince Eoghan

    Can I be the first one to nominate Alex Salmond as the first President of the yet to be constituted Celtic Federation(discussed here last week). Not only would he be a very able leader, he also has a great sense of humour. Last night on question time, he put the Daily Mail colummnist right in her place. This nasty right-winger(aren’t they all) wanted us all jailed for not supporting England and all Palestinians dead by sundown.

    As always we would have to placate the Unionists by tellimg them that while wee Alex may not be a follower of the sons of William(Rangers), he is a die hard supporter of the cousins of William(Hearts) and as such would not allow them to be sold down the river;¬) too much anyway.

  • Rory

    Of course some wags would contend that, in the person of the fragrant Cherie, we already have a Catholic Queen consort.

  • OR

    *Can I be the first one to nominate Alex Salmond as the first President of the yet to be constituted Celtic Federation?*

    An hour on and no seconders!

    “fragrant Cherie”

    Close the windows

  • Nevin

    The Catholic Church and Civil Allegiance – several schools of thought.

    [i]Nominated by Pope John Paul II in October 2002, Archbishop Migliore is the fourth person to serve as Apostolic Nuncio and Permanent Observer of the Holy See to the U.N. The Holy See refers to the supreme authority of the Roman Catholic Church, the Pope as Bishop of Rome and head of the college of Bishops. Under international law, it is a legal institution that can enter into treaties as the juridical equal of a State, and to send and receive diplomatic representatives. The Holy See offers orientation and spiritual inspiration that should animate the life of nations and their mutual relationships.

    As Permanent Observer to the U.N., the Holy See maintains full diplomatic relations with 174 countries out of the 192 member countries of the U.N. Rather than a full member of the U.N., the Holy See chose the status of Permanent Observer, in order to maintain neutrality in specific political problems. The Holy See also is present at U.N. centers abroad, as well as at other international organizations including the European Community, the Organization of American States and the African Unity. [/i]

    Surely it’s time that the Vatican’s status as a state was removed?

  • Does the Queen not hold the title;

    ‘Defender of the Faith and Supreme Governor of the Church of England’

    Yup im sure a Catholic would fit right in…

  • Nevin

    FYU, the Act of Settlement is surely in need of change. Could a citizen of Kerry, from the kingdom of Ireland, be a Privy Councillor? And what about the Archbishop of Canterbury being chosen by the Prime Minister?

  • kensei

    “Am i wrong in believing that this law has its roots in the fact that it says somewhere that the Pope considers his powers to be above all earthly rulers and their powers ?”

    Yes, you are wrong. It has its roots in anti-Catholic bigotry, and nothing more.

    “This means nothing to you and not a lot to me but as I say the Catholic should put their own house in order before mopeing about the consequences of their own actions.”

    There is nothing to put in order. If you are a Catholic, the Pope is grand high spiritual leader, which he would probably indeed consider above all temporal powers. It has precisely zip impact anywhere anywhere on a Head of State or Prime Minister doing what they want.

  • Rory

    Quite a body of the Church of England would very much welcome a Catholic Head of State and Supreme Governor of the Church and would hope that that might facilitate the passage into full communion with Rome.

  • Nevin,

    The Irish Privy Council was abolished in 1922 after partition.

    The Archbishop of Canterbury is appointed by the Queen on the advice of the Prime Minister,who considers a the people put forward by a Church Commission, oh and also he cant resign without the Queens permission

  • Nevin

    Kensei, it seems the Catholic Church is still quite content to meddle in political affairs:

    [i]The Catholic Archbishop of Dublin and Primate of Ireland, Dr Diarmuid Martin, is giving a lecture tonight on “The Future of Europe” in All Hallows College, Dublin 9. This is a prelude to a major all-day conference on the EU in Dublin’s Croke Park Stadium on tomorrow, Tuesday, to be addressed by Irish Taoiseach Bertie Ahern,and by such well-known Irish Europhiles as Peter Sutherland, Alan Dukes, David Begg and Brigid Laffan.

    This ludicrously one-sided event is being financed by the EU Commission, the Irish Department of Foreign Affairs AND THE JESUIT ORDER. Its purpose is to generate support in Ireland for the moribund EU Constitution which was rejected by the voters of France and the Netherlands this summer.

    The EU Commission has been allocated some 200 million euros to encourage ratification of the “Treaty Establishing a Constitution for Europe”, in which it is a hugely self-interested party; for the Constitution would greatly increase the Commission’s power, perquisites and constitutional status in a new EU if the Treaty embodying it were ever to be ratified.[/i]

    In Ahern’s case it appears to be a ballot-box in one hand and a Carmelite in the other …

  • Nathan

    Trevor Sargent of the Irish Greens alongside his northern counterpart Dr John Barry, has been lobbying Tony Blair for the Act of Settlement to be binned for some time now. Looks like the well-intended lobbying fell on deaf ears by the looks of things.

  • Nevin

    FYU, I was referring to the UK Privy Council, not the Irish one.

  • barnshee

    monarch in uk is head of church of england
    ie protestant. roman catholic = not protestant
    Get monarch removed as head of COE and bingo no reason why taig cannot be monarch. simple really

  • foreign correspondent

    Aren´t Unionist always banging on how about Northern Ireland should stay in the UK because of its spiffing attitude to civil and religous liberty for all. How does that square with the Act of Settlement then?

  • darth rumsfeld

    “Aren´t Unionist always banging on how about Northern Ireland should stay in the UK because of its spiffing attitude to civil and religous liberty for all. How does that square with the Act of Settlement then?”

    Er, quite easily- any memebrs of the Church of England can be the Governer of the Church of England. I can’t because I’m a Presbyterian, and guess what? Am I bovvered?

  • Reader

    foreign correspondent: spiffing attitude to civil and religous liberty for all. How does that square with the Act of Settlement then?
    Go on then – name the person or persons actually affected by the Act of Settlement. I, personally, am maybe 25millionth in line to the throne. Without the Act of Settlement I would be maybe 26 millionth. I don’t see that it has substantially improved my chances at your expense, even if bird flu hits these islands very hard indeed.

  • kensei

    “Kensei, it seems the Catholic Church is still quite content to meddle in political affairs:”

    The Catholic Church alog with any other Church is perfectly within it’s rights to give it’s opinion or support any particular policy they wish.

    This does not mean individual Catholics must comply.

  • `lib2016

    Just another nasty little pinprick to remind us that a thirty-two county Irish republic is infinitely preferable to any fudged ‘joint authority’ solution.

    The English are perfectly entitled to whatever arrangements suit them. If they wanted to attract the emerging Catholic middleclass here they would tackle this problem. They don’t and they won’t!

  • Brian Boru

    “Am i wrong in believing that this law has its roots in the fact that it says somewhere that the Pope considers his powers to be above all earthly rulers and their powers ?

    in which case Catholics also beleive this and hence a Catholic on the throne is essentially bringing the supremacy of the Vatican over the UK nation state ?”

    The only power the Catholic Church claims to have is spiritual/moral power. You are truly deluding yourself if you think he controls Catholics like some hypnotist. Is that why Napoleon stole the Vatican treasures and took them to France where many still are? This reminds me of old prejudices like “Jewish conspiracies”. Some people are stuck in the 1600’s. Grow up.

  • “Not just catholics your MOPERS, no muslims, no Jews, No Buddists, No presbyterians, NO methodists, NO baptists, etc
    Either COE or nowt”

    fair enough, but the Brit monarch is also the head of the ~Anglican~ church

    conflicts ?

    mind, i do know a moravian minister whoes married to a Zulu catholic & they seem to be able to cope.

  • “Not just catholics your MOPERS, no muslims, no Jews, No Buddists, No presbyterians, NO methodists, NO baptists, etc Either COE or nowt”

    True, but you can marry a member of any of those denominations and, as long as your a descendant of the Electress of Hanover, you can remain in line to the throne. You specifically cannot marry a Catholic.

  • kensei

    “The only power the Catholic Church claims to have is spiritual/moral power. You are truly deluding yourself if you think he controls Catholics like some hypnotist.”

    You only said that because the Pope told you to say that.

  • bertie

    darth
    The queen is a presbyterian when she is in Scotland. Hmmmm How do we know you arn’t her?

  • Brian Boru

    “Er, quite easily- any memebrs of the Church of England can be the Governer of the Church of England. I can’t because I’m a Presbyterian, and guess what? Am I bovvered?”

    No. The ban is specifically against Catholics. Not Methodists. Not Presbyterians. Not Jehovah’s Witnesses. No. Just the damn Papists! It’s a sovereign UK decision on whether it wants to keep it and the sectarianism inherent in it, but it goes against modernity and is seen by Orange extremists as legitimising their prejudices. As such it should be scrapped from a moral point of view.

  • Fergus D

    The Act of Settlement issue (if it is one) is easily solved.

    Abolish the monarchy.

    Little or few powers it may have, but it represents inherited wealth and power and therefore it is essentially anti-democratic.

    Also, dis-establish the C of E. Nothing against them, but we shouldn’t have a state religion.

    (Oh – and no sate funding for religiously affiliated schools!)

    Job done, welcome to the 21st century.