AMBASSADOR TO THE HOLY SEE
To St Mary Moorfields in the City: Francis Campbell, British Ambassador to the Holy See, was speaking to The Keys, the Catholic Writers' Guild. Extraordinarily interesting: he outlined the history of the links between the Holy See and Britain in modern times, with particular reference to World War 11, and then spoke of his own work. A good discussion time allowed the raising of a range of questions including our Government's ruthless pushing of abortion and contraception as contrasted with the Holy See's defence of the family and human values, and indeed the whole question of how our Govt is apparently keen to crush Christian initiatives (freedom to speak, eg w. reference to the Sexual Orientation Regulations etc).
In discussing WW11, he highlighted the concern of the anti-Nazi Germans who, especially in the early days of the war, were exploring how the Allies would respond to a German overthrow of the Nazi regime and overtures for peace. Diplomats around the Vatican were part of all of this - a little-known chunk of history.
Meetings of The Keys are always good, and every time I think "This is the best yet!" - it is a chance to meet other Catholic writers, and publishers, plus their guests. Piers Paul Read was there - he's a former Chairman of the Guild - also Jeremy de Satge of The Music Makers, and Alenka Heyer, over from America with husband John - her weekly "Stateside" column in the Catholic Times is a delight.