Francis Davis, whom I cited in my last post as a member of the Magic Circle, seems to have become shy about what that means.
"Oh, and for reader’s of the Muniment Room if you read on across this blog the idea that I may be part of the ‘magic circle’, I must admit, did bring light relief in my house and a few others on a rainy weekend!"
Leaving aside the grammar and punctuation, the fact is that his self definition as a member of one committe of the (Catholic) Archdiocese of Southwark and of another in the (CofE - multiply Brownie points by two for ecumenism) Diocese of Oxford (never mind the presumably secular Higher Education Funding Council Panel) makes him part of the Magic Circle.
Damian, who popularised the phrase, has never got round to defining "Magic Circle" (mainly because it is blindingly obvious what it means, even if you're part of it and want to pretend you aren't) but, just to help poor Francis, who seems to have even lost his CV from his website, I have adopted Henry Fairlie's original definintion of the "Establishment", which fits the bill squarely:
"By the 'Magic Circle', I do not only mean Eccleston Square - though it is certainly part of it - but rather the whole matrix of official and social relations within which power is exercised. The exercise of power in the Catholic Church in England and Wales, both at diocesan level and within the structures of the Catholic Bishops' Conference, cannot be understood unless it is recognised that it is exercised socially."
We know who they are; they know who they are. I named a whole bunch of them earlier this year, here.
The point, though, isn't who they are, but what they are doing? We've seen a couple of examples in the last few weeks involving Cruddas (the Catholic Intern programme, the speech at Blackfriars), but there's an awful lot more.