Fr. Andrew Hogan made history on July 8, 1974, becoming the first Roman Catholic priest to be elected to the House of Commons. Better known as Father Andy, he would serve two terms before losing in the 1980 election. He died in 2002. There have been two other priests who were MPs at the same time — Fr. Bob Ogle (NDP, 1979-84) and Fr. Raymond Gravel (Bloc Quebecois, 2006-08). In 1980, the Vatican banned priests from seeking political office, though bishops could grant special permission. The Register’s Dan Mothersill wrote about Hogan’s historic victory in the July 20, 1974 issue:


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OTTAWA -- Fr. Tony Van Hee says nearly three decades spent fasting and praying on Parliament Hill to end abortion have been the best years of his life.

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FULDA, Germany – The president of the German bishops' conference urged "verbal disarmament" after Sept. 24 elections brought a far-right party into the Bundestag, or parliament, for the first time since World War II.

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The international development organization of the Catholic Church in Canada is demanding the federal government adopt a feminist foreign aid policy that diverts emphasis from enabling abortion to delivering lasting peace.

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OTTAWA - After a surge of asylum seekers over the summer, Canada’s refugee policies will be the top concern for many faith-based groups when Parliament resumes Sept. 18.

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CAPE TOWN, South Africa – Following its own findings of severe corruption in government, the South African Council of Churches called for the dissolving of parliament and new general elections.

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OTTAWA  – The House of Commons has passed a motion condemning Islamophobia and religious discrimination, despite concerns about freedom of speech.

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MANCHESTER, England – The Catholic duty priest to the British Parliament said people were weeping at prayer services the day after the Westminster terror attack.

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June 17, 2016

Get it done

The prevailing legal vacuum around assisted suicide is unacceptable and begs a speedy end to the head-butting between the elected House of Commons and the unelected Senate — even if that means politicians forgoing summer vacations.

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OTTAWA – Canada’s Senate passed an amended version of euthanasia and assisted suicide Bill C-14 June 15 that is almost certain to face backlash from elected Parliamentarians as it is sent back to the House of Commons.

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OTTAWA – Thousands descended on Parliament Hill May 12 for the annual National March for Life as the Liberal government within the walls of Parliament was rushing a bill through that will legalize euthanasia and assisted suicide in Canada.

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OTTAWA – Canadian plans to export abortion to Africa “reeks of colonialization and it reeks of cultural imperialism,” a Nigerian scientist told a gathering of MPs and senators.

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OTTAWA – Several opposition amendments intended to inject safeguards into the federal government's assisted-suicide legislation, including a proposal to explicitly limit doctor-assisted death to the terminally ill, were defeated as Liberal-dominated committee hearings began.

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LONDON – Catholic bishops have welcomed a unanimous vote by the House of Commons declaring atrocities committed by Islamic State as "genocide."

Published in International
March 10, 2016

Common sense

Canadian law permits abortion at any time for any reason during a pregnancy. Despite the Supreme Court’s position that Parliament is entitled to legislate some protections for pre-born children, what has developed instead is de facto government endorsement of an absolute right to choose.

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Charles Lewis: The papal office deserves a defence 

"I believed that criticism of the papacy was a sport for non-Catholics or perhaps disgruntled Catholics who were always at odds with Church teachings. Then a few things happened," Charles Lewis writes.

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Read the latest homily given by Pope Francis.

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