Dear Bishop Pat,
There are still outstanding questions about the financial bankruptcy of Portsmouth Diocese and Bishop Egan’s craving to transfer the funds from the Priests’ Retirement Fund to be absorbed by the Diocese.
Several priests and some lay people too are now asking if the Diocese of Portsmouth bought the Lawside Academy and Convent of Mercy in Dundee, so that the Franciscan Sisters and Friars from Gosport and Bridgemary could be housed.
Did Portsmouth Diocese buy this site? If so, we need an honest answer.
Is that the main reason why the Retirement Fund valued at least 10 million pounds in real estate is being transferred?
Bishop Egan and his Trustees, (we need a bona fide word to describe the Portsmouth Trustees) claim that one reason why the Sisters and Friars were transferred to Scotland was their lease on the properties had run out, but the leases for both places belong to the Diocese of Portsmouth!
Why was the official name of the Friars changed twice since they came to Portsmouth? Was it because this community was disbanded by the Vatican?
The Friars are still incardinated in Portsmouth Diocese and they have retained occupancy of St. Joseph’s Church and Presbytery, Copnor, Portsmouth. Does that mean they receive their salary from Portsmouth Diocese?
And finally, why did Bishop Stephen Robson, the Bishop of Dunkeld, suddenly announce his early retirement on the feast of Holy Innocents, December 28th 2022?
Did he suddenly realise what a horrible mistake he had made in allowing these two communities into the Diocese of Dunkeld three months prior?
RESIGNATIONS OF TWO MEMBERS OF THE PORTSMOUTH PRIESTS RETIREMENT FUND MANAGEMENT BOARD.
It is with regret that AS and SB had to resign from the Priests Retirement Fund Management Board earlier today, and we wanted to explain the circumstances.
The PRF Management Board has been in a difficult disagreement with the Diocese for some months regarding its and the Diocesan financial difficulties. Both are short of capital for different reasons. The PRF also has a short-term cash flow problem for this year only, created by several trustee decisions about the CLOSER TO CHRIST fundraising receipts and loan payments. The Diocese has a significant structural deficit over a number of years.
We are unhappy that a number of decisions were taken by PRF trustees, advised by the Curia without any involvement of the PRF Management Board, and when they knew they were conflicted ( as trustees of both the PRF and the Diocesan Trust.
These decisions have been to the detriment of the PRF. We have reported the matter to the Charity Commission and have also complained to the Moderator of the Curia who brought the complaint to the full Ttustees meeting earlier today. We await their findings on our complaint.
At the same meeting, the trustees agreed to a proposal from te Curia, advised by several solicitors for the merger of the two charities, subject to the approval of the Charity Commission.
The Fund itself will be transferred into a Special Trust within the Diocesan Charity. We have been advised that the two solicitors that the Fund is then secure from civil litigation but, of course, will be controlled by a new Diocesan arrangement still to be specified, but not an independent charity.
In addition, no work has been produced to the PRF Management Board or to the Department for Clergy by the Curia on a transition plan, a business case or an operational model for the new arrangements.
The Trustees have taken the decision to merge, not knowing how it will be done and whether it will be effective, confidential, or safe.
Unfortunately, the decisions taken are, in our opinion, so detrimental to the PRF and against the foundation document setting up the PRF that we can not remain to try and assist with the new arrangements whenever they are proposed. We will, of course, cooperate with any timely handover. “
The situation is not hard to understand.
Egan is a dictator and is determined to have his way.
Any mere lay person, even if a professional, who gets in his way will be run over by a coach and four.
Certain people have said that Egan is ruining the diocese every way, including financially.
Egan believes himself to be the supreme authority in Portsmouth, and he will do what HE WANTS and spends what HE WANTS
The outcome will be DISASTER and RUIN.
AND, where do these monks and nuns fit into all of this?
Can anyone tell us?
Are they the UK’s SILVERSTEAM or similar?