Scotland’s Roman Catholic Bishops have thanked their Parliamentary Officer, John Deighan for his “resolute and dedicated service” to the Bishops’ Conference over the past 16 years. Mr Deighan, who leaves to take up the post of Chief Executive Officer of SPUC (Society for the Protection of Unborn Children) Scotland next month became the Catholic Church’s Parliamentary Officer in 1999 at the inception of the Scottish Parliament.
Commenting on the move, Archbishop Philip Tartaglia, President of the Bishops’ Conference said: “John has provided dedicated and energetic service to the church in Scotland for 16 years and we wish him well in his new role. His ability to skilfully analyse political developments and track legislative changes has been immensely helpful to the Bishops’ Conference.”
The Archbishop added: “The links between the church and SPUC in Scotland are already strong, but they will be strengthened and renewed as a result of John’s appointment.”
Responding to the Archbishop’s comments. John Deighan said: “I have been privileged to work with the Scottish Bishops during a period of great political and parliamentary change and thank them all for their support and friendship over many years.
“The greatest human rights challenge of our time is the right to life from conception. SPUC had been an outstanding organisation in its efforts to defend unborn children and those threatened by euthanasia. I greatly look forward to leading the organisation as it continues its work in this vital area and to continued collaboration with the Bishops’ Conference. I am confident there is much we can do to bring the justice of our cause to the attention of our fellow citizens and our politicians.”