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Cardinal's letter to The Times about Ruth Kelly MP

posted on 12 May 2006

In a letter published in The Times on Thursday, May 11th, 2006, Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O'Connor has said that he is 'astonished that Ruth Kelly's Catholicism might be considered incompatible with her role as Equality Minister.' 


The full text of the Cardinal's letter can be found below. 


“I am astonished  that Ruth Kelly’s Catholicism might be considered incompatible with her new role as Equality Minister.


The Catholic Church teaches that some actions are sinful, sexual acts outside marriage  among them. St Thomas Aquinas taught that not every sin is necessarily a crime, and not every crime is necessarily a sin. From this stems the Church’s defence of human rights. Homosexual people are first of all persons, and have the same entitlement to legal rights as anyone else. The Church has consistently spoken out  against any discrimination against homosexual persons, and will continue to do so.


Every politician needs to balance the demands of his or her conscience with the need for collective responsibility in Government. Ruth Kelly is finding that balance for herself. For this she deserves respect, not criticism.


Ms Kelly may well be scrutinised for her fitness for office. That is a political judgement. But her Catholicism should not be a criterion in forming that judgement.'

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posted on 12 May 2006

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