| 20th January 2016 | Modified: 1st March 2016 | Christianity, News Releases | Pope Francis, Scots College, Rome | Seen 183 times | Liked 0 times

20 January
Jan 20
20th January 2016

Pope Francis has been officially invited to visit the Pontifical Scots College in Rome to help mark this year’s 400th anniversary of its founding as a seminary.


“The Pontifical Scots College has a truly remarkable history and, so, it would be wonderful if Pope Francis could join us as we celebrate that past with pride while looking to the future with great confidence and trust in the Lord,” said Archbishop Leo Cushley of St Andrews & Edinburgh 20 January.  



The Pontifical Scots College in Rome was founded in 1600 by Pope Clement VIII to provide an education for young Scottish Catholic men who, due to the laws against Catholics, could not receive a Catholic education at home.


Inspired by the martyrdom of St John Ogilvie, the sixteen students studying at the College vowed on 10 March 1616 to return to Scotland as priests, just one year after the saint’s execution at Glasgow Cross.


“It would be a great honour for the College and for all the young men studying with us if the Pope Francis is able to join us to mark 400 years of priestly formation,” said Fr Daniel Fitzpatrick, Rector of the Pontifical Scots College.


“I am sure the Holy Father’s presence would be a great blessing to the College, a source of encouragement for our seminarians and an inspiration to other young men to join them here in Rome to continue the long tradition of the Pontifical Scots College.”


Archbishop Cushley issued the invitation on behalf of the Bishops Conference of Scotland and the Pontifical Scots College during a private audience with Pope Francis at the Vatican’s Apostolic Palace 18 January during which the two men discussed a wide range of issues.


“It’s now over two years since the Holy Father sent me to Scotland to bring the joy of Christ’s gospel to all those who live within the Archdiocese of St Andrews & Edinburgh – so I wanted to brief him on how our Archdiocese is progressing with that important mission he has entrusted to me.”


During their 40-minute discussion, Archbishop Cushley gifted the Pope a copy of the 2015 pastoral letter “We Have Found the Messiah” in which the Archbishop sets out a vision of how the Archdiocese of St Andrews & Edinburgh can better evangelise the communities within its bounds.


“Pope Francis has such a warm, kindly and supportive personality and he was clearly very informed and interested in how the Catholic Church in our part of Scotland is fairing as we attempt to preach the Gospel to our contemporary society.”


“In short, Pope Francis was Peter – the rock – such that during our discussion he continually confirmed my faith of by his words and by his example.”  



Peter Kearney


Catholic Media Office

5 St. Vincent Place


G1 2DH

0141 221 1168

07968 122291






1. For more information contact David Kerr, Director of Communications at the Archdiocese of St Andrews & Edinburgh, on 0131 623 8900 or


2. Photographs of Archbishop Cushley meeting Pope Francis on Monday 18 January are available from David Kerr, Director of Communications at the Archdiocese of St Andrews & Edinburgh, on 0131 623 8900 or


3. Archbishop Cushley was visiting Rome en route to a meeting of the Bishops Conference of Scotland at the Royal Scots College in Salamanca, Spain.


4. Archbishop Cushley was Head of the English Language Section at the Vatican’s Secretariat of State from 2009 to 2013 where he worked for both Pope Benedict XVI and Pope Francis.


5.  Archbishop Cushley also attended the Pontifical Scots College from 1979 to 1987.

Posted by . You can also subscribe to email updates.

Like   Back to Top   Seen 183 times   Liked 0 times

Subscribe to Updates

If you enjoyed this, why not subscribe to free email updates ?

Subscribe to News updates

Enter your email address to be notified of new posts:

Subscribe to:

Alternatively, you can subscribe via RSS

‹ Return to News

We never share or sell your email address to anyone.

I've already subscribed / don't show me this again

Recent Posts

Bishop comforts families of Barra teenagers

| 5 days ago | Blogging

The Bishop of Argyll and the Isles, Bishop Brian McGee has travelled to Barra to visit the families of Eilidh MacLeod and Laura MacIntyre. Both teenagers attended the concert at the Manchester Arena on Monday night, at which Salman Abedi launched a suicide bomb attack, killing 22 and injuring 64 con...

Scots support reduced abortion time limits and statutory waiting period

| 8 days ago | Blogging

A new poll out today (Sunday 21 May) shows that most people (60%) would like to see time limits for abortions reduced, among women the figure is 70%. ComRes interviewed 2,008 British adults online between 12th and 14th May 2017. Data was weighted to be representative of all GB adults. 61% of Scotti...

Scotland’s Catholic Bishops pre-election letter

| 15th May 2017 | Blogging

Monday 15 May 2017 Society “will be judged on how it treats its poorest and most vulnerable citizens” say Scotland’s Catholic Bishops in pre-election letter. In a pastoral letter which will be read at all 500 Catholic churches in Scotland this weekend (20/21 May) Scotland's Catholic Bishops,...

Scottish Bishops offer thanks to Nuncio

| 20th January 2017 | Blogging

His Excellency Archbishop Antonio Mennini, who has served as Apostolic Nuncio to Great Britain since December 2010, has been appointed by Pope Francis to serve in the Holy See Secretariat of State and will take up his new post in Rome next month.   Reacting to the announcement, Archbishop Phi...