In a strongly worded letter to be read out at all masses in Scotland's 500 Catholic parishes during the weekend of 14/15 April, the Bishops point to a
"conflict of values in society" which they claim has led to "legislation and regulations which are seriously at odds with the insights and values of our Christian faith and of other faiths".
They go on to raise concerns about; "abortion, embryo experimentation, easy divorce and civil partnerships" and the need to constantly "counter criticism of the very existence of Catholic schools". Referring to recent regulations which could prevent Catholic adoption agencies from carrying out their work, the letter describes " a stealthy and unjust attack on the freedom of religion itself and on the rights of conscience" it goes on to describe such innovations as "dubious" and "detrimental not just to the good of the Catholic community but to the common good of humanity as a whole" concluding "They deserve to be challenged at the ballot box."
Catholic Media Office
5 St. Vincent Place
0141 221 1168
Notes to editors:
1. The full text of the letter is shown below
2. Attached to the letter are a number of questions which Catholic voters may wish to consider and put to candidates, these are also shown below.
3. The Catholic parliamentary Office has already circulated this questionnaire to candidates results of responses to date can be viewed here: www.rcpolitics.org
4. An MP3 file is available for broadcasters comprising 1m audio interview with Cardinal O'Brien on the letter