A truly holy man, and an obvious omission from the list.
Some of the winners have achieved great fame through publicity on this blog: for example, Vicky Beeching, who came out as a rock singer; Tim Stanley, alias Dr Who; Fr Ray Blake, the victim of the Brighton Argus; and Libby Lane, the first Anglican bishopess. Not to mention Austen Ivereigh and Catherine Pepinster. That's enough plugging old posts, Eccles.
Tina Beattie - omitted, in spite of all my efforts.
So who else should have been on the list, and wasn't? I was going to suggest Santa Claus, as he manages to be present in numerous places at the same time, proclaiming the joy of Christmas. However, he turns out to be Turkish, although his holding company is based at the North Pole.
Then there's Christopher Robin (Milne), as in "Christopher Robin is saying his prayers", but he turns out to be dead. The priest-detective Fr Brown of Kembleford, if alive, must be about 130 years old by now: it is rumoured that he lives in retirement in Scotland, calling himself "Basil Loftus" and emerging occasionally to write a humorous column for the Catholic Times. However, this rumour is unconfirmed, so I searched for others who embody the true Christian spirit.
Thomas the Tank Engine, in papal camauro.
Thomas, although a train rather than a human being, comes from a Christian family (the Rev. Wilbert Vere Awdry was his godfather). He is often described as a "really useful engine", but this does not go far enough. In terms of his faithfulness to Christ and his kindness to the poor, he surely provides one of the great spiritual examples of our time. It is true that he has a high carbon wheelprint, and would thus not be in favour with Pope Francis, but I think he can easily overcome such opposition. Success always attracts jealousy.
Fr Jack Hackett.
Although technically Irish, Fr Jack was featured in the Father Ted series of documentaries, which had two British producers, Geoffrey Perkins and Lissa Evans. This makes him eligible for an award, which he wins on account of his great holiness and kindness. Hostile critics have described him as "lecherous", "foul-mouthed" and "alcoholic"; it is true that when he awakes from a deep coma and shouts "EXISTENTIAL SCHIZOPHRENIC" or "NEO-PELAGIAN" at random passers-by, one wonders how he achieved his high position as spiritual leader. However, he is a truly humble man, whose needs are simple (mainly, DRINK), and we plainly see the Light of Christ shining through him.