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83 Catholic MPs in Parliament

After Pope Benedict XVI’s call for faith to be part of public life, a list of Catholic legislators has been compiled Christopher Lamb

A FULL list of Catholic MPs can now be pub- lished for the first time following an analysis by The Tablet. It reveals 83 Catholic MPs, many of whom

attended a reception in the House of Commons last July with Archbishop Vincent Nichols. Before the general election this year, the number of Catholic MPs was 85, although no definitive list had been drawn up. Lists that appeared in the Catholic Directory were often incomplete.

Among the 2010 intake there are 27 new Catholic MPs, of whom 13 are Conservatives, 13 Labour and one a member of the SDLP in

A to D David Amess (Con.), Southend West; Louise Bagshawe (Con.), Corby; Joe Benton (Lab.), Bootle; Julian Brazier (Con.), Canterbury; Kevin Brennan (Lab.), Cardiff West Andy Burnham (Lab.), Leigh; Conor Burns (Con.), Bournemouth West; David Cairns (Lab.), Inverclyde;

Ronnie Campbell (Lab.), Blyth Valley;

Jim Dobbin

William Cash (Con.), Stone; Tom Clarke (Lab.), Coatbridge Chryston and Bellshill; Therese Coffey (Con.), Suffolk Coastal; Damian Collins (Con.),

Folkestone and Hythe; Rosie Cooper (Lab.), West Lancashire; David Crausby (Lab.), Bolton North East; Mary Creagh (Lab.), Wakefield; Jon Cruddas (Lab.), Dagenham; Jim Cunningham (Lab.), Coventry South; Margaret Curran (Lab.), Glasgow East; Simon Danczuk (Lab.), Rochdale; Gloria De Piero (Lab.), Ashfield; Jim Dobbin (Lab.), Heywood and Middleton; Thomas Docherty (Lab.), Dunfermline and West Fife; Gemma Doyle (Lab.), West Dunbartonshire; Jack Dromey (Lab.), Birmingham Erdington; Iain Duncan Smith (Con.), Chingford and Woodford Green; Michael Dugher (Lab.), Barnsley East; Mark Durkan (SDLP), Foyle.

E to K Jane Ellison (Con.), Battersea; Jonathan Evans (Con.), Cardiff North; Paul Farrelly (Lab.), Newcastle-under-Lyme; Robert Flello (Lab.), Stoke on Trent South; Mary Glindon (Lab.), North Tyneside; Paul Goggins (Lab.), Wythenshawe and Sale East;

36 | THE TABLET | 6 November 2010

Northern Ireland. The Labour newcomers include Jack Dromey, husband of Harriet Harman, who is Shadow Secretary of State for International Development and deputy leader of the Labour Party; Pamela Nash, and Bridget Phillipson – at 26, the youngest MPs to be elected in 2010. Among the new Conservative MPs are Therese Coffey, who took over the seat of Catholic former MP Baron Deben (John Gummer), and Paul Maynard (Blackpool North and Cleveleys), Parliament’s first MP with cerebral palsy. Excluded from our list are five Sinn Fein

MPs, who do not sit in the House of Commons, having refused to take the oath to the Queen. The Catholic Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales now employs a full-time

Who’s in the House of Commons

Damian Green (Con.), Ashford; Ben Gummer (Con.), Ipswich; Mike Hancock (Lib. Dem.), Portsmouth South; Mark Harper (Con.), Forest of Dean; Stephen Hepburn (Lab.), Jarrow; Meg Hillier (Lab.), Hackney South and Shoreditch; Damian Hinds (Con.), East Hampshire; Mark Hoban (Con.), Fareham; Huw Irranca-Davies (Lab.), Ogmore; Helen Jones (Lab.),

Ben Gummer

Warrington North; Daniel Kawczynski (Con.), Shrewsbury and Atcham; Barbara Keeley (Lab.), Worsley; Charles Kennedy (Lib. Dem.), Ross Skye and Lochaber.

L to R

Edward Leigh (Con.), Gainsborough; Angus MacNeil (SNP), Na H-Eileanan Neriar; Denis MacShane (Lab., whip withdrawn), Rotherham; Paul Maynard (Con.), Blackpool North and Cleveleys; Siobhain McDonagh (Lab.), Mitcham and Morden;

Catherine McKinnell

Alasdair McDonnell, (SDLP), South Belfast; Pat McFadden (Lab.), Wolverhampton South East; Jim McGovern (Lab.), Dundee West; Anne McGuire (Lab.), Stirling; Ann McKechin (Lab.), Glasgow North;

Catherine McKinnell (Lab.), Newcastle North; Patrick McLoughlin (Con.), Derbyshire


Stephen McPartland (Con.), Stevenage; Mark Menzies (Con.), Fylde; Gregory Mulholland (Lib. Dem.), Leeds North West;

Bridget Phillipson

Jim Murphy (Lab.), East Renfrewshire; Paul Murphy (Lab.), Torfaen; Pamela Nash (Lab.), Airdrie and Shotts; Eric Ollerenshaw (Con.), Lancaster and Fleetwood; Teresa Pearce (Lab.), Erith and Thamesmead;

Bridget Phillipson (Lab.), Houghton and Sunderland South; Stephen Pound (Lab.), Ealing North ; John Pugh (Lib. Dem.), Southport; Jacob Rees-Mogg (Con.), North East Somerset; Margaret Ritchie (SDLP), South Down; Frank Roy (Lab.), Motherwell and Wishaw; Chris Ruane (Lab.), Vale of Clwyd.

S to Z Jim Sheridan (Lab.), Paisley and Renfrewshire North; Gerry Sutcliffe (Lab.), Bradford South ; Sarah Teather (Lib. Dem.), Brent Central; Derek Twigg (Lab.), Halton; Keith Vaz (Lab.), Leicester East ; Valerie Vaz (Lab.), Walsall South; Charles Walker (Con.), Broxbourne; Christopher White (Con.), Warwick and Leamington; Jeremy Wright (Con.),

Sarah Teather Kenilworth and Southam.

Total: 83 MPs (48 Labour; 26 Conservative; 5 Liberal Democrat; 3 SDLP; 1 SNP)

public policy officer, Edward Davies, to help develop relationships between MPs and the Church. They also have the assistance of Richard Kornicki, a retired civil servant who worked in the Home Office and advises the conference on public affairs. During the past year, Catholic MPs have been invited to seminars on areas of church teaching. Archbishop Vincent Nichols addressed them on Pope Benedict XVI’s encyclical, Caritas in Veritate, Archbishop Emeritus Kevin McDonald talked about inter- faith relations and Bishop Patrick Lynch discussed the Church’s approach on immi- gration. Canon Pat Browne, as duty Catholic chaplain for Parliament, says Mass regularly in the House of Commons.

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