Cardinal Keith O'Brien has today written to several MSP's to congratulate them for recognising " the importance of supporting marriage and family life in Scotland". The Cardinal's letters have been sent to seven members of the Scottish parliament's 'Justice 1' Committee (the MSP's are; Pauline McNeil, Stewart Stevenson, Bruce McPhee, Mike Pringle, Margaret Mitchell, Mary Mulligan and Marlyn Glen) and follow the recent debates in that committee on the Family Law Bill. Members of the Holyrood committee voted against plans to reduce the separation period for divorce with consent from two years to one. With a number arguing in favour of attempts to support marriage. Brian Adam, the SNP MSP for Aberdeen North, said: "Divorce should be the last possible option, rather than something we should be smoothing the passage to."
As well as writing to the seven Justice 1 committee members, to thank them for their "sincere efforts in examining the important issues at stake", Cardinal O'Brien has also written separately to MSP's, Brian Adam and Fergus Ewing who contributed to the debate although not members of the committee.
In his letter to Mr Adam and Mr Ewing, the Cardinal thanks them for their efforts "in trying to uphold the importance of marriage in society" adding; "I am aware that you are not a member of the Justice 2 committee but have added to your workload by participating in the discussions of this committee and giving support to important amendments aimed at safeguarding the importance of marriage." He concludes by offering "Congratulations on your courageous stance which I pray may achieve some success in the Parliament and support from out with the Parliament."
Commenting on the correspondence, Cardinal O'Brien said;
"It is good to see our Parliamentary system in action, managing to call the Scottish Executive to account and to hold in check their more radical proposals. The original proposals from the Executive, quite rightly, caused considerable disquiet within the committee and widespread concern across Scotland I am delighted that these MSP's have reflected that concern."
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