Sunday April 22, 2012 www.thecatholicuniverse.com
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I’m not leaving Downton Abbey
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Environmental campaigner is awarded prestigious £100,000 Goldman Prize
FATHER EDU HAILED AS HERO My battle with the nickel-mining giants
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CAFOD director says that changes to law could lose them £500,000 a year
Charity tax cap must be dropped
By Mary McGinty
Proposed new tax laws on charity giving could have a devastating effect on those most in need, according to the director of a leading Catholic charity.
Chris Bain, CEO at CAFOD, told TheUniversethat principles of faith – not the desire to minimise their tax bills – are the reason people give to Catholic charities.
He said the Government “must find ways to stop any abuse, but must do so in a way which encourages philanthropy and good charitable giving, not discourages it.”
“We have an immensely generous supporter base – and this will be true of many charities – and these people are not driven by tax loopholes or planning tax.
“We get our donations throughout the year – for emergencies, for Christmas, throughout Lent, not based on tax deadlines. These are donors driven by their faith principles who want to put something back, and the proposed legislation will make it financially harder for those people to make those choices to give,” said Mr Bain.
A recent poll revealed that nine out of 10 charity bosses believe donations will suffer severely.
Estimating the potential impact on CAFOD, Mr Bain said: “If one in five of our reasonably large donors decides they cannot continue to make donations as a result of this change, that will cost us about half a million pounds a year.”
Continued on page 2
From left to right: Fr Brendan Hoban, Fr PJ Madden and Fr Sean McDonagh from the Association of
Catholic Priests speaking at a press conference in Dublin
Anger and dismay as second Irish priest silenced over liberal views By Sarah Mac Donald An organisation repre- senting hundreds of priests in Ireland has ex- pressed its concern after a second member of the group has been ordered to stop writing and com- mentating in public.
Fr Sean Fagan, an 84year-old Marist Father, has been reprimanded by the Vatican after he had called for an inquiry into clerical sexual abuse in all Irish dioceses. He has also advocated allowing women and married men to become priests.
Following the decision, his religious order bought all remaining copies of a theological book written by Fr Fagan, and has requiredhim to give an undertaking not to write again.
The Association of Catholic Priests has condemned the moves to silence Fr Fagan, just days after another priest was ordered to return to his monastery after his newspaper column was pulled by the Church.
ACP spokesman and Universe columnist Fr Sean McDonagh said that the silencing of Fr Fagan is “just outrageous”.
“Fr Fagan’s writings were clear, well written and interesting. He wants to start a conversation about the Church’s views on sexuality.
“I believe that the silencing of priests by the Vatican is out of a desire for control rather than because of sincerely held belief or intelligent argument.”
Full story on page 2
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