The planned visit of Pope Benedict XVI in September, ex Hitler Youth Movement member, is generating widespread opposition (see What’s On).
Campaigning organisations of secular bodies, equalities groups and victims of clerical sexual abuse have called upon the government not to fund the trip.
Cameron has already pledged an estimated £20 million of public money to support this visit from Rome, this at a time of financial cutback of Britain’s services and industries.
The last Papal visit to Britain in 1982 was a financial disaster for the Catholic Church. It was the only visit abroad by the then Pope John Paul II, anti-communist Pole, that actually lost the Church money as Britain shunned his visit and the trinkets and tat that was promoting the visit.
Ironically, without a state subsidy the Pope wouldn’t have come. This follows on the Vatican announcing that it has been in deficit for the last three years. Effectively, the Vatican City is bust.