Catholic Bishops announce resumption of communal worship

Scotland’s Catholic Bishops have welcomed the First Minister’s comments today (Thursday 9 July) on places of worship and have announced the resumption of communal worship in Catholic parishes from 15 July.

Commenting on the move, the President of the Bishops’ Conference of Scotland, Bishop Hugh Gilbert said; “Over the past month, our parishes have been preparing for the safe resumption of communal prayer and the celebration of Mass, which is at the centre of the life of the church. To have been unable to attend Mass for many months has been a source of real sadness for Scotland’s Catholics and I am sure there will be great joy at the prospect of returning.”


“Thanks to the widespread implementation of the church’s Infection Control protocols, Catholic parishes will begin the resumption of public Masses and other communal activities from 15 July.”


Bishop Gilbert added; “The bishops are extremely grateful to all those who have worked tirelessly to prepare our parishes for public worship and to those who made their views known to their parliamentary representatives and the government on the subject of communal worship.While thanking the Scottish Government for listening to these calls, we would remind parishioners that the obligation to attend Sunday Mass remains suspended and ask those who return to do so in accordance with the infection control measures in force in each parish, mindful always of the need to protect themselves and others.”

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The History of our Diocese

The Diocese of Dunkeld, one of the eight Roman Catholic Dioceses in Scotland. Dunkeld Diocese comprises 35 parishes of 65,000 Catholics from a total population of 580,000 (11.2%) served by 35 priests and 4 deacons.

In area the diocese is 8,495 square kilometres (3,280 sq. miles). It is thought that the diocese was constituted as far back as the middle of the ninth century.

The first occupant was styled Bishop of Fortriu, the name by which the kingdom of the northern Picts was then known. This bishop was also styled Abbot of Dunkeld, perhaps holding jurisdiction, formerly enjoyed by Iona, over the other Columban monasteries in Scotland.

The new bishopric appears to have included a great part of what afterwards became the Diocese of Argyll, and retained its jurisdiction over various churches representing old Columban foundations.

There were thirty‐five bishops of Dunkeld from its foundation until the suppression of the Catholic hierarchy during the Protestant Reformation in the sixteenth century.

The pre‐Reformation cathedral, situated in the Perthshire town of Dunkeld, was erected between 1220 and 1500.

After the Reformation the cathedral fell partly into ruins, although the choir is used for Presbyterian worship. The Catholic Church restored the diocese on 4 March 1878, by decree of Pope Leo XIII.

Today, Dunkeld is one of the suffragan sees in the archiepiscopal province of St Andrews and Edinburgh, and includes the counties of Perth, Angus, Clackmannan, Kinross, and the northern part of Fife.

Today the diocesan cathedral is dedicated to St Andrew and is located in Dundee rather than Dunkeld, Dundee being the residence of the majority of the Catholics of the diocese and the largest centre of population.

The cathedral chapter, erected in 1895, consists of a Provost and seven canons. Bishop Stephen Robson is the 9th Bishop of the Diocese of Dunkeld.

We hope you find the site informative and that it will bring you up to date with all the events happening in our diocese. You will also find links to the wider Church community, not only in Scotland, but worldwide.

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