In a new national initiative, the Director of the Scottish Catholic Church’s Parliamentary Office, Anthony Horan, has written to the Catholic priests of Scotland asking them to encourage their parishioners to become more involved in politics.
Mr Horan says he wants them to ensure politicians are aware of what’s happening in their parishes.
The call to greater political action among parishioners provides each parish in Scotland with full contact details of their MSPs and MPs.
Mr Horan says it is ‘incredibly important’ for Parliament to know about the work being done in local parishes and the best way to ensure this is to make them feel part of the parish community, ‘irrespective of whether or not they are Catholic’.
The initiative suggests inviting local representatives to events, such as Masses, charity events, coffee mornings and youth clubs, to make them part of parish life.
Commenting on the letter, Mr Horan said: “The Catholic parish is the centrepiece of the community and it exists to serve all people, including feeding the poor, ministering to the sick, accompanying the lonely, and engaging with young people.”
He said awareness among political leaders of the role played by the Catholic church in society was crucial to promoting greater understanding and appreciation.
“Building positive relationships between parishes and elected representatives, will help reveal the truth about the immensely positive contribution the Catholic Church makes to Scottish society,” Mr Horan added.
Picture: Road sign for Holyrood in Edinburgh. The Scottish Parliament is often referred to as Holyrood, the area of the city where the parliament building is. (Jane Barlow/PA).