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William Oddie

William Oddie

Dr William Oddie is a leading English Catholic writer and broadcaster. He edited The Catholic Herald from 1998 to 2004 and is the author of The Roman Option and Chesterton and the Romance of Orthodoxy.

Soon the media will discover that, like all popes, this one is no liberal. Then they will turn against him; and normality will return

The Pope preaches during a mass service (CNS)

The Holy Father has his own idiosyncratic way of talking about the faith and of connecting with the faithful. But he really isn’t about to reinvent the papacy

Ken Clarke says Ukip voters are closet racists and loonies. Well, I’m not a racist. And Clarke would have had us in the eurozone: he’s the loonie, surely?

Nigel Farage (Photo: PA)

Ukip policies are mostly either sensible or profoundly right. So until the Tories come to their senses I shall be voting for them

Conviction politics is back, they say. But will the politicians keep it up; and do they really mean it?

A shopper browses Charles Moore's biography of Margaret Thatcher (PA)

If you believe that there is such a thing as truth, then you have to tell those who disagree with you, voters or not, that they are just wrong

Another episcopal attack on Catholic blogs. But we will not hold our tongues: and Aquinas and Newman are with us

The bishops' conference of England and Wales attend a general audience with Pope Francis (Photo: Mazur/catholicnews.org.uk)

‘If the faith is in imminent peril,’ said St Thomas, ‘prelates ought to be accused by their subjects, even in public.’ What a blogger he would have made…

The Dean of St Paul’s is right: it is not ‘appropriate’ to protest at Mrs Thatcher’s funeral. A funeral is about respecting another person’s humanity

Baroness Thatcher's coffin lies in the Crypt Chapel of St Mary Undercroft beneath the Houses of Parliament (Leon Neal/PA Wire)

Those who have protested against her are in any case mostly those from whom she rescued us

I knew I was going to have trouble with two popes; when we pray for the ‘Holy Father’, it’s still Benedict I think of. Fathers don’t resign: they just get old

Pope Benedict XVI conducting one of his weekly general audiences (AP)

And I really can’t be doing with all this “emeritus” stuff. He’s still simply Pope Benedict to me

Some think it ironic that pugnacious Mrs Thatcher should pray for harmony. But she was closer to St Francis than you may think.

Margaret Thatcher arriving at 10 Downing Street on May 4, 1979

She believed also in truth, in faith, and in hope where there was despair; and she prayed for these things, too.

Michael Philpott did evil things because of the benefits system, says AN Wilson. That’s surely a perfect example of the folly of moral relativism.

Mick and Mairead Philpott (Photo: PA)

Without the welfare state, he says, Philpott would have been ‘decently employed’. Maybe it’s more likely he would still have been a criminal?

Washing a woman’s feet on Maundy Thursday didn’t mean that the Pope will ordain women: but it was unsettling and it does mean something

Pope Francis washes the foot of a prisoner at Casal del Marmo youth prison in Rome (Photo: CNS)

The adventure begins: and it’s going to be a bumpy ride

How, when we read of Islamist atrocities against Christians, are we to contain and overcome the temptation to turn against Muslims?

Magdi Allam pictured shortly after his baptism in St Peter's Basilica in 2008 (AP)

It’s not always easy or even possible. But hatred of the sinner rather than of the sin is always unChristian