Tribute to Anthony Fraser RIP

AproposAlthough I’ve had the privilege of meeting Tony Fraser, son of the famous Communist convert Hamish, I can’t claim to have known him well on a personal level.  The following glowing tribute from The Remnant, therefore, serves our purpose well – to pay tribute to his work as editor of Apropos,  and to encourage bloggers to pray for the repose of his soul.  Tony was always supportive of Catholic Truth: he gave ready permission to use material from Apropos and was always co-operative when I contacted him for assistance. Unfortunately, due to family illness, I won’t be able to attend the funeral but for those who would be free to do so, the arrangements follow…

Funeral Arrangements:

A Tridentine Requiem mass will be offered for the repose of Tony’s soul at 10am on Friday 5th September at St Mary’s Church (Our Lady, Star of the Sea),10 Ardrossan Road, Saltcoats, Ayrshire KA21 5BW.

From The Remnant

We are devastated by the news of the sudden passing of our old friend and ally, Anthony S. Fraser, who died yesterday morning, August 28 (Feast of St. Augustine), of apparent heart failure.

Readers of The Remnant will immediately recognize the name Anthony Fraser as the indefatigable editor of Apropos—the UK’s premier traditional Catholic magazine. Of course, Tony is also the son of the late, great Hamish Fraser—an early pioneer of the traditional Catholic movement as well as a close friend and collaborator of the founder of The Remnant, Walter L. Matt (RIP). His Approaches magazine is generally considered Europe’s traditionalist magazine of record during the turbulent years following Vatican II.

Hamish’s biography, Fatal Star, published by Neumann Press, tells the story of the former communist turned Catholic warrior for Christ the King and ardent devotee to the Sacred Heart of Jesus. Along with Michael Davies, Archbishop Lefebvre, Arnaud de Lassus, John Senior and Walter Matt, Hamish was with the first Catholic traditionalists to make the famous stand against the new orientation of Catholic Church spawned by the infamous ‘spirit of Vatican II’. When it comes to Tony the apple didn’t fall far from the tree. When Hamish died quite suddenly in 1986 Tony not only picked up his father’s standard but would make it his own and carry it into battle for Christ the King for the next 30 years. His characteristic humility induced Tony to wince at the thought of placing himself at the same level as his revered father, and so he changed the name of the family magazine to Apropos and carried on from then until now in the spirit of his father’s Approaches.  
Like Hamish, Tony was a loyal son of the Church with a proper Scottish refusal to abandon Catholic Tradition and the Social Rights of Our Lord Jesus Christ the King under the regime of novelty. Instead, he became a champion of Tradition and the Social Teaching of the Catholic Church promulgated by the great popes of the latter half of the 19th and early half of the 20th centuries.


Tony wrote only occasionally for The Remnant but was always an enthusiastic promoter of The Remnant, regularly publishing unsolicited ads for us in his magazine. Quite recently, in fact, he simply gave us the rights to our book on Freemasonry by Arnaud de Lassus (most of which had originated in Apropos). But that’s the way he was. It was the cause, the truth, that mattered most to Tony. I was honored to walk the pilgrimage to Chartres with Tony and his sons, Simon and Seamus, several times years ago and will never forget the camaraderie, the brilliant sense of humor and the unflappable sensus Catholicus of the Fraser clan.

Tony was realistic but I never found him to be pessimistic, and his sense of humor maintained a balance that always provided welcome relief when the chips were really down. And so a few months after Francis was elected Pope, for example, Tony quipped to me in an email: “We can only hope and pray that Francis is the Pope we Catholics did not deserve rather than the one we do.  But as my dad used to say it is Ecclesiam Suam and He knows best – perhaps as Fr Thwaites observed – we have a bit of winnowing to suffer yet.”

Perhaps there is something apropos in the fact that the very last message I received from Tony, in an email dated August 9, 2014, included the following bit of lighthearted encouragement:

“As my Dad said – Keep punching!
Yours aye in Christo Rege, Tony”

In other words, don’t ever give up the fight for the old Faith. Indeed, Tony never did.

There is so much more to say about Anthony Fraser, but it will have to wait until the next issue of The Remnant. Still reeling from the shock of his passing, let it suffice to say that Tony was the quiet but formidable soldier of Christ we are proud to boast of as ‘one of ours’. Tony, son of Hamish, was an ally and brother to those of us privileged to call him friend. We will miss him more than we can say, and we extend our sincere condolences to his wife, Janice, and the entire Fraser family. Requiescat in Pace.

11 responses

  1. That’s very sad news. I found the story of Hamish Fraser’s conversion enthralling. There is a photo of him in one of the Fatima books with the doves on his head, which is really symbolic of the Holy Spirit. I believe itt was Our Lady of Fatima who brought him into the Church, so I can imagine his whole family, Anthony included, would have had special graces as a result.

    I won’t be able to make it to the funeral, but I will pray for the repose of his soul and for the whole family who must be very sad at their loss.

    May he rest in peace.

  2. I didn’t subscribe to Apropos but I have read copies and appreciate that it must have taken a lot of dedication to produce it. Anthony Fraser was selfless in keeping the Traditional flag flying in Scotland after his father’s death. May he rest in peace.

  3. I didn’t know Anthony Fraser although I’ve read about his father, a wonderful man.

    I will certainly pray for the repose of Anthony’s soul.

    Requiescat in Pace.

  4. My sincere condolences to all the family. I believe his wife is really shocked at Tony’s sudden death, so my prayers promised for the family, as well as for the repose of Tony’s soul. May he rest in peace.
    He will be sadly missed.

  5. I didn’t know Anthony Fraser, though like Margaret Mary have read about his father.

    My condolences to Anthony’s family, and may he rest in peace.

  6. I am very sad to learn this news. I have never met Tony but I have read a fair bit about his father, Hamish who was a great fighter for the faith after his conversion from Communism. I know Tony did his utmost to keep his father’s work going and so he will be a great loss to the fight for tradition.

    Eternal rest grant unto him, O Lord, and let perpetual light shine upon him, may he rest in peace.

  7. Another warrior for the Faith gone to his reward. May he rest in peace.

    My condolences to Anthony’s family.

  8. Thanks to those who have promised prayers for the repose of Tony Fraser’s soul. I sent the link to his family as I’m sure they will find it of some consolation when they are free to read it.

    We have arranged for Mass to be offered by a priest of the SSPX for the repose of Tony’s soul.

  9. Tony was true gentleman who I had the great pleasure of meeting many times when and he and his wife Janice came to the Edinburgh chapel. Two of their sons, Michael and Simon, attend the chapel with their families as does their grandson Hamish the eldest child of their daughter Therese who was due to give birth to her sixth child today. He will be greatly missed.

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