Bruce Kent

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Bruce Kent (born 22 June 1929) is a British political activist and a former Roman Catholic priest. Active in the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament (CND), he was the organisation's general secretary from 1980 to 1985 and its chair from 1987 to 1990. He now holds the honorary title of vice-president.[1] In 1960 he joined the Christian Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament,[2] a specialist section of the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament.[3]

Early life[edit]

Kent was educated in Canada before attending Stonyhurst College. He served as an officer in the Royal Tank Regiment from 1947 to 1949 and afterwards read jurisprudence at Brasenose College, Oxford from 1949 to 1952.

Priesthood[edit]

In 1958 Kent was ordained as a Roman Catholic priest and was a chaplain to the University of London from 1966 to 1974. He was chair of the charity War on Want from 1974 to 1976.

In 1987, Kent left the priesthood rather than comply with an instruction from the late Cardinal Basil Hume to desist from involvement in that year's UK General Election in accordance with the canon law of the Catholic Church.[4]

During his time as a priest Kent attained the status of a monsignor.[5]

Politics[edit]

From 1985–1992 Kent succeeded the late Sean MacBride as President of the International Peace Bureau.[6]

In 1992 Kent was a candidate for the Labour Party in the constituency of Oxford West and Abingdon, where he came third. Had he been elected, he would at the time have been prevented, as an ordained priest, from taking his seat in the House of Commons.[7] Sitting Member of Parliament and former Conservative minister John Patten, also a Catholic, retained his seat.[8] Kent is also a member of the Palestine Solidarity Campaign.

Personal life[edit]

Kent married Valery Flessati on 4 July 1988 and now lives in Harringay, North London.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Veteran anti-nuclear campaigner gives city peace talk Yorkshire Post, 1 July 2009
  2. ^ King, Mike. "BRUCE KENT – PEACE WORK FOR OVER 50 YEARS". Retrieved 24 July 2011. 
  3. ^ "Christian CND". Retrieved 24 July 2011. 
  4. ^ ARC Patrons Biographies Arms Reduction Coalition
  5. ^ [1] Sale, J. (1999). "Passed/Failed: Bruce Kent". The Independent, Thursday, 28 January 1999 (Online: Accessed 7 November 2010).
  6. ^ King, Mike. "BRUCE KENT – PEACE WORK FOR OVER 50 YEARS". Retrieved 24 July 2011. 
  7. ^ Hansard – 16 June 1999, col 394
  8. ^ English Counties United Kingdom Election Results 1983–97

External links[edit]

Preceded by
John Cox
Chair of CND
1977–1979
Succeeded by
Hugh Jenkins
Preceded by
Duncan Rees
General Secretary of CND
1979–1985
Succeeded by
Meg Beresford
Preceded by
Paul Johns
Chair of CND
1987–1990
Succeeded by
Marjorie Thompson