The Right Reverend Peter Doyle, Bishop of Northampton, has recently declined to progress, as we say nowadays, the cause for the Beatification of G K Chesterton.
I don't understand his first reason : he says that there is no local cult. But, traditionally, those promoting a cause had to demonstrate that there was no local cult; that the local Church had not jumped the canonical gun. Perhaps a canonist could explain this to me. Nor do I find it easy to take seriously his second reason: "I have not been able to tease out a pattern of personal spirituality". The liturgical Calendar is already, arguably, overloaded with Bishops and Founders. The addition of a simple and married layperson who sought sanctity simply through the plain everyday means of grace offered by the Redeemer in His Church would seem to me a valuable affirmation of plain 'mere' Christian 'spirituality'.
It seems to me obvious that the real reason for Bishop Doyle's decision is the third claim he makes: that "even allowing for the context of GKC's time, the issue of anti-Semitism is a real obstacle particularly at this time in the United Kingdom".
I had better make clear that I am not a Chestertonian enthusiast. I have no dog in this fight.
My apprehension is a 'justice' issue. His lordship is behaving in a quasi-judicial manner, and I do not believe that he possesses the necessary and publicly visible judicial impartiality.
Why? Soon after the end of Pope Benedict's pontificate, the German bishops launched an attack on part of his legacy: his imposition on the Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite of a Prayer for the Jews, composed by the Pope himself, for use (only) on Good Friday. And somebody persuaded the CBCEW to fall into line behind Cardinal Marx.
This was probably the most disgraceful episode in the history of the CBCEW.
A body of men so anxious to rubbish a Magisterial action of a very learned Pope only half a decade or so after that action is not a body of men which can claim impartiality in the area concerned.
Peter Doyle was a member of that body of men.