For the Second Sunday in Easter, Ponder the Words of the Former Archbishop of Canterbury

‘Vilified’ Christians ‘fear arrest’ in the United Kingdom—where is the Queen, still the Fidei Defensor?

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  • Lord Carey said Christians were excluded from many sectors of employment because of their beliefsView Photo

    Lord Carey said Christians were excluded from many sectors of employment because of their beliefs

Christians are being “persecuted” and “driven underground” while the courts fail to protect their religious values, a former Archbishop of Canterbury has claimed.

Lord Carey said Christians were excluded from many sectors of employment because of their beliefs, “vilified by state bodies” and feared arrest for expressing their views.

The former archbishop’s claims are part of a written submission to the European Court of Human Rights, seen by the Daily Telegraph, ahead of a landmark case on religious freedom.

The hearing will deal with the case of two workers forced out of their jobs after visibly wearing crosses, the case of a Relate therapist sacked for saying he may not be comfortable giving sex counselling to homosexual couples, and a Christian registrar who wishes not to conduct civil partnership ceremonies.

In the submission, Lord Carey said the outward expression of traditional conservative Christian values has effectively been “banned” under a new “secular conformity of belief and conduct”.

The former archbishop argued that in “case after case” British courts have failed to protect Christian values and urged European judges to correct the balance. He said there was a “drive to remove Judeo-Christian values from the public square” and argued UK courts have “consistently applied equality law to discriminate against Christians” as they show a “crude” misunderstanding of the faith by treating some worshippers as “bigots”.

In his submission, Lord Carey, who was archbishop from 1991 to 2002, wrote: “In a country where Christians can be sacked for manifesting their faith, are vilified by state bodies, are in fear of reprisal or even arrest for expressing their views on sexual ethics, something is very wrong. It affects the moral and ethical compass of the United Kingdom. Christians are excluded from many sectors of employment simply because of their beliefs; beliefs which are not contrary to the public good.”

He added: “It is now Christians who are persecuted; often sought out and framed by homosexual activists. Christians are driven underground. There appears to be a clear animus to the Christian faith and to Judaeo-Christian values. Clearly the courts of the United Kingdom need guidance.”

He argued British judges have used a strict reading of the equality law to strip the legal right to freedom of religion of “any substantive effect.”

Keith Porteous-Wood, executive director of the National Secular Society, told the Telegraph: “The idea that there is any kind of suppression of religion in Britain is ridiculous. Even in the European Court of Human Rights, the right to religious freedom is not absolute – it is not a licence to trample on the rights of others. That seems to be what Lord Carey wants to do.”

I say, for my part: God Save the Queen and May She Yet Live to Appoint Nick Griffin as Prime Minister someday of a BNP Led Government to restore the national values of Winston Churchill! (She wouldn’t have him to tea as I recall, but I presume that would change if he were elected—we’ll see how Marine Le Pen does in France—that will be a key test!  I mean, I like Nick and the BNP just fine, but I’d rather have Marine ANY DAY as my President…. if only there were anybody like her AT ALL in the USA….)

2 responses to “For the Second Sunday in Easter, Ponder the Words of the Former Archbishop of Canterbury

  1. Barbara Anne Kidd-Hoffmann

    Religious persecution is scarcely a new thing in Britain, though this is distressing to read. I dare say many of our ancestors wouldn’t have hopped the pond had it not been for this sorry feature having been a part of life in the British Isles. It is sad that people do not seem to learn more from history, isn’t it?

  2. Charles Edward Lincoln III

    Well, Babs, that’s a very interesting thought, and one cannot deny that, at the very least, during the four centuries from the expulsion of the Jews under Edward I in 1290 through at least the accession of King William of Orange and Queen Mary (II) Stuart in 1689, religious tolerance was not a dominant feature of English, Scottish, or Irish life. Ironically, I would say that the three absolute low points were (obviously first) King Henry VIII, giving rise to the martyrdom of Sir Thomas More, promoted to become Saint Thomas More, the second would have been Henry’s eldest daughter Mary (I) Tudor, aka “Bloody Mary”, and the third low point in religious tolerance was under the Commonwealth of Oliver Cromwell in the 1650s, and none of these were times of great religiously motivated emigration. Cromwell’s oppression of the Irish Catholics was one of the first and most monstrous “ethnic cleansing’ programs in European history.
    Far worse than the mere “expulsion” of the Jews from England in 1290 or of the Jews and Moors from Spain in 1492, Cromwell really did try to eradicate the Irish people, and it was his handiwork that really destroyed the last remnants of indigenous, Celtic Irish Culture, including the poetry of the bardic tradition and all those wonderful things that I, as a comparative Indo-Europeanist in my spare time, would so dearly love to see preserved and documented in full.
    On the other hand, by the mid-19th Century, England pretty well led the world in religious tolerance. It’s hard to believe but London elected a Jewish Mayor (David Solomons) in 1855, a full 120 years before New York City did (Abraham Beame). And the leader of reform in the Church of England during the 19th century, John Henry, Cardinal Newman, actually left the C of E at Oxford and became a Roman Catholic (hence the title “Cardinal”) as he formed and shaped the “Oxford” Anglo-Catholic movement (to which both of my parents belonged, much to the horror of THEIR parents, my grandparents).
    But one of the many differences between the reign of King James I, for example, and today is that the religion being promoted in 1611 was that of the “majority”, including both Parliament and the King. The religious views that were being suppressed were the “nonconformists”, the dissenters, the “merely sectish minorities” (like the Pilgrims on the Mayflower and later the Puritans, including of course the very first known Lincolns on the North American continent). The Archbishop of Canterbury has had very few (if any) complaints with Parliamentary policy towards the Church since the restoration of Charles II Stuart in 1660.
    What’s happening right now is very different. There are apparently those in England who really DO want to see Christian England vanish entirely. These are the people of whom Lord Carey is complaining. These are the people who hate and are hated by the BNP, “the fastest growing political party in Britain” (or so they claim). No, the Church of England was “established” by Parliament in its present form in 1559 when Queen Elizabeth I Tudor, the first full year after she acceded to the thrown in November 1558, and all the Kings and Queens of England have born the title Fidei Defensor (“Defender of the Faith”) since King Henry VIII received that title (again ironically) from Pope Leo X in 1521. It seems that Queen Elizabeth II (Windsor [after her Uncle King Edward VIII], aka Mountbatten, fka [in the time of her grandfather King George V] “Battenburg”) may yet preside over the final demise of England as a Christian country UNLESS someone like Nick Griffin leading some party like the BNP ultimately takes over as Prime Minister. My mother was very pleased to have a full time Indian nanny from the East End for me when I was a toddler, but that was just the beginning of the flood of East Indians, West Indians, and Africans who came in from the former colonies under the immigration laws of 1948 (which, just coincidentally, are the laws which (a) Nick Griffin and the BNP swear to repeal and reverse on the one hand and (b) all “Birthers” in the USA point to as proof positive that, wherever he was actually born, Barack Hussein Obama is ineligible to serve as President, since his Father was a British subject). Anyhow—
    I really do think that what’s going on now is very, very radically different from what was going on in history, but you are certainly correct that, if (especially the American majority, fragile as it is) knew more, it would better be able to handle the present and contemplate the future. I was once told (back in Apartheid Days) that the White People of South Africa were utterly incapable of seeing the future. I wonder if that’s somehow become true of White People everywhere?

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