COVID-19 has put a bloody great dent in the Catholic Church’s finances in England. But instead of approaching the church’s corporate headquarters for a slice of its not inconsiderable wealth Bishop Mark Davies, above, of the Diocese of Shrewsbury wants the UK government to bail it out.
In 1965 the Vatican’s assets were said to be in the region of £10 to $15-billion.
According Wiki, currently the wealth of the church is “unknown.” Quelle surprise! The RCC is not exactly known for it’s transparency.
The weeks of the national lockdown saw a dramatic fall of about a third in parish income. This is having a serious impact on the operation of parishes.
The bishop said that he supports the suggestion recently proposed by local politician Mike Kane, Labour MP for Wythenshawe and Sale East, for the government to consider an enhanced Gift Aid scheme to help faith communities mitigate the financial damage of the lockdown.
It’s surely no coincidence that Kane, above, is the founder of the Catholics For Labour group, which the MP describes as:
A group aimed at those interested in exploring and applying our rich vein of Catholic social teaching to public policy.
He left out “and to suck off the welfare state’s teat.”
Kane told the House of Commons that the Shrewsbury diocese income was down by almost £700,000 (roughly $875,000).
Brexit will impact negatively on the church
Dr Joseph Shaw, right. chairman of the Latin Mass Society Society of England & Wales, said that it was time for the bishops to reassess their priorities and make:
Some painful decisions. The epidemic has accelerated processes which were happening anyway: a steady fall in Mass attendance and income. This is unlikely to recover fully. If Brexit limits the supply of Catholic immigrants from Central Europe this will create a serious financial problem for the Church, not just in the short term, but in the long term as well.
Dioceses are not going to go broke: they have enormous property portfolios in prime city locations. But the prospect of lay diocesan bureaucrats paying themselves out of our patrimony of church buildings while the Church effectively ceases to exist as a presence on the ground is not a happy one.
Shaw said modern liturgical practices play a key role in destroying both vocations and Mass attendance.
It is past time for bishops to make some painful decisions: not about closing parishes, which they are well used to doing, but about attracting vocations and bringing people back to the practice of the Faith.
They know that female altar servers, modern hymns, and excluding Latin from seminary liturgy is destroying vocations and Mass attendance, but up to now they have regarded these things as too important to sacrifice. Perhaps now would be a good moment to reassess their priorities.
Meanwhile, it’s reported that Catholic Church donations have plummeted in Dublin, falling by as much as 80 per cent. The Dublin Archdiocese said the need to close churches had “resulted in very serious consequences” for its income stream.
Separately, a spokesman for the Irish Catholic Bishops’ Conference said:
Lay and clerical pay has been reduced across the country, with lay redundancies also in play. This reduced pay/wages is expected to continue into 2021.
LifeSiteNews readers aren’t exactly overjoyed by the prospect of government funding for the churches in Engand and Wales.
Government money? That is dangerous – whoever pays the piper calls the tune as one commentator has already observed! In more than a sense, this is nothing new since the State has been funding our Catholic schools for years and that is why we have no choice but to accept sex-ed and so on.
UK Catholic Church – Need to be careful!!! – he who sups with devil needs a long spoon. The article says that it’s a Labour Party MP who is supportive of UK government aid. Trouble is the Labour Party are known for their liberal left, progressive agenda, and are ardent champions of the LGBTQ mob.
A third observed:
Problem is, the world has always been hostile to the faith. The Church knew it was at war and had defenses in place against the attacks of the world. The difference in the past 50-60 years is that the Church threw away those defenses and embraced the world. Well…. now the Church has started to look no different than the world with the same thinking, same sins, and same goals as that of the world pervading the members.