Ruth Gledhill, the religious writer for the secular Times, (she herself is Anglican, I believe?) writes what sounds, in places, like a press release from Archbishop Nichols personal hagiographer.
And on the eve of the release of his first pastoral letter, she offers a surprising contributor to British Catholicism's, and therefore, Nichol's current success
Archbishop Nichols, a conservative, is marking a near-triumphant start to his service as successor to Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O’Connor.Talk abut God's power to draw straight with crooked lines!
Although this has yet to be reflected in numbers of worshippers, Catholicism, along with other religions in Britain, is experiencing something of a renaissance.
This is thought partly to be due to the efforts of atheists such as Richard Dawkins and novelists such as Dan Brown and Philip Pullman. The publicity engendered by their fulminations seems to have had the opposite effect of that intended and proved the truth of the adage that no religion benefits as much from persecution as Christianity.
The number of seminarians or trainee priests at his seminary in Chelsea, Allen Hall, has risen for the third year after decades of decline, with a new intake of 12 this September bringing the total to 45.