27 April 2010
Here it is, enjoy:
27 April 2010
Statement from the Catholic Education Service for England and Wales
Statement from Oona Stannard
“I am disappointed that Mr Pope’s appointment to the Catholic Education Service for England and Wales (CESEW) has occasioned some very misleading and diverting correspondence from a small number of people. At a time when as Catholics we particularly need to pull together, the undermining of Mr Pope saddens me. Mr Pope deserves our encouragement and support in his new role undertaken in the service of the Church.
“His first line responsibility is the organisational management of CESEW but like all senior colleagues at CESEW he will be involved in policy work. In this and all aspects of his role he is required to uphold the Church’s teachings. This is a responsibility that he has willingly committed to undertake and I have every confidence that he will fulfil this expectation.
“Staff at CESEW are busy preparing for the Papal visit and looking forward especially to the event which will have an education focus. We are also getting ready to respond to whatever may be the outcome of the General election and the emerging policy developments which will impact on Catholic education. We are concentrating on this and our core work.
“Mr Pope, other candidates and referees are entitled to have their confidentiality respected re the selection process for Deputy Director and I, therefore, do not intend to say anymore on this appointment.”
Statement from Gregory Pope
“I am happy to clarify my position. I am a committed, practising Catholic. I very much share the Church’s opposition to abortion. I was one of only a handful of Labour MPs who defied their own Government to vote against the whole Human Fertilisation and Embryology Bill at its Third Reading on the grounds that it was insufficiently pro-life.
“I really want look forward now to how I can serve the Catholic Church through its Education Service rather than debate the minutiae of previous voting tactics in the House of Commons. We face serious challenges from a secularising society and a sometimes hostile media; I hope that we might look forward to finding solutions together rather than seeking division in our own ranks.”
Notes to Editors:
Mr Pope was appointed to the position of Deputy Director at CESEW in April 2010 following advertisement of the post in Catholic and other media. Bishops, members of the CESEW Management Committee, senior diocesan education colleagues and others were represented on the selection panel.