Ukip has elected a pro-life Catholic as its new leader.
Paul Nuttall, MEP for North West England, gained 62.6 per cent of party members’ votes. Mr Nuttall, 39, is a practising Catholic. Last year he told the Tablet: “On moral issues, we, more than any other political party, are more in line with Catholic thought. Whether it’s on gender-choice abortion or same-sex marriage, we are absolutely 100 per cent behind the Catholic Church.”
Mr Nuttall is a former deputy leader of the party, which he joined in 2004. He was elected an MEP in 2009.
After his election, he said he would press the government for a “real Brexit” and would challenge Labour for working-class support.
“I want to replace the Labour party and make Ukip the patriotic voice of working people,” he told the BBC, adding that the Labour leadership was part of “a north London Islington set”.
Earlier this year, Mr Nuttall wrote to the Catholic Herald to express his “shock” at the Royal College of Midwives’ support for scrapping all abortion restrictions.
In 2010, he spoke at the AGM of the Society for the Protection of Unborn Children, at which he said it was frightening that a child is safer on the streets than in its mother’s womb.
Mr Nuttall told the BBC that he would prioritise “immigration, crime, defence and foreign aid, ensuring that British people are put to the top of the queue in the jobs market”.
Nuttall was born in Bootle in Merseyside and educated at a Catholic comprehensive.
St Thomas More’s hair shirt is enshrined at Devon abbey
The hair shirt worn by St Thomas More as he contemplated a martyr’s death in the Tower of London has been enshrined for public veneration.
The folded garment made from goats’ hair was encased above an altar in Buckfast Abbey, Devon.
St Thomas, a former Lord Chancellor of England, wore the shirt while in the Tower of London awaiting execution for opposing the Protestant reforms of Henry VIII.
He was beheaded on July 6, 1535, after telling a crowd that he was “always the king’s good servant, but God’s first”.
Benedictine Abbot David Charlesworth told the Catholic News Service that the shirt had not been shown in public before. He said that although the shirt was a secondary relic, he believed it was of greater significance than a body part, or primary relic, because it was directly linked to the saint’s religious convictions.
“What this relic represents is St Thomas More’s faith,” he said. “This relic says something about who Thomas More was as a Christian … it is a major relic. It is linked to his life of conversion and his identification with the sufferings of Christ.”
Suffering Christians honoured
The Houses of Parliament, churches, cathedrals, synagogues, universities and even buses were lit up in red last week to highlight the plight of persecuted religious minorities abroad. The event, known as Red Wednesday, was organised by Aid to the Church in Need.
Coptic Orthodox leader Bishop Angaelos said outside the Coptic Cathedral of St George: “We stand in solidarity with all those who suffer.”
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