From the UK’s best Catholic weekly, the Catholic Herald:
Thousands sign petition calling for Richard III to have a Catholic burial
Three thousand people have signed a petition calling for Richard III to be given a Catholic burial.
The petition, addressed to Cardinal Vincent Nichols, the Archbishop of Westminster, is being organised by the historians whose efforts led to the king’s remains being found under a car park in Leicester.
Under present plans Richard III, who died in the Battle of Bosworth in 1485, before the Reformation, will be buried at the Anglican [That seems wrong to be.] cathedral in Leicester on March 26.
But Philippa Langley, leader of the Looking for Richard project, said the burial should take into account Richard III’s Catholic faith.
She said: “It seems this former king and head of state is to be treated as a scientific specimen right up to and including the point at which he is laid in his coffin.”
Dr John Ashdown-Hill, a historian who worked to identify the bones, has also called for a Catholic burial, saying: “There is a lot of evidence that Richard III had a very serious personal faith. If Richard III had not have died, maybe the Anglican church would never have existed.” [There’s an interesting point. Richard was defeated by the Henry Tudor who became Henry VII, father of the monstrous Henry VIII.]
However, a joint statement by Leicester Cathedral and the Catholic Diocese of Nottingham said these concerns were “fundamentally misplaced”. [?!?]
The statement said: “There is no requirement in the Catholic tradition for prayers to be said at the coffining of human remains, including those of a monarch. The arrangements agreed between the university and the cathedral have the full support of the Catholic Church.”
Ecumenical services will surround the event, with Cardinal Nichols preaching a service of compline on the day the king’s remains are received into the cathedral.
The cardinal will also celebrate a Requiem Mass the next day at a nearby Catholic parish.