Thursday, April 10, 2014

Cameron's Easter message: "Religious freedom is an absolute, fundamental human right"

"Easter is the most important date in the Christian calendar, and an incredibly special time for people across Britain and around the world. Last month I was in Jerusalem and Bethlehem and I got to see for myself the places where Jesus was born and died. It was an extraordinary experience to be in those places where so much history began.

Today, 2000 years on, Easter is not just a time for Christians across our country to reflect, but a time for our whole country to reflect on what Christianity brings to Britain. All over the UK, every day, there are countless acts of kindness carried out by those who believe in and follow Christ. The heart of Christianity is to 'love thy neighbour' and millions do really live that out. I think of the Alpha courses run in our prisons, which work with offenders to give them a new life inside and outside prison, or the soup kitchens and homeless shelters run by churches. And we saw that same spirit during the terrible storms that struck Britain earlier this year. From Somerset to Surrey, from Oxford to Devon, churches became refuges, offering shelter and food, congregations raised funds and rallied together, parish priests even canoed through their villages to rescue residents. They proved, yet again, that people's faith motivates them to do good deeds.

That is something this Government supports and celebrates, and it's why we have announced more funding for the Near Neighbours programme bringing together even more faiths in even more cities to do social action. And as we celebrate Easter, let's also think of those who are unable to do so, the Christians around the world who are ostracised, abused -- even murdered -- simply for the faith they follow. Religious freedom is an absolute, fundamental human right.

Britain is committed to protecting and promoting that right, by standing up for Christians and other minorities, at home and abroad. Our hearts go out to them, especially at this special time of year. So as we approach this festival I'd like to wish everyone, Christians and non-Christians a very happy Easter."

34 Comments:

Blogger Len said...

The christian message was going well until 'faiths' which blew the whole thing out of the water.
All faiths coming together seem to be the underlying message which ain`t the Christian Gospel at all.
(prepares for onslaught of fundamentalist bigot accusations)

10 April 2014 at 18:09  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Cameron: "All over the UK, every day, there are countless acts of kindness carried out by those who believe in and follow Christ."

And by those who don't.

"Religious freedom is an absolute, fundamental human right."

Obviously it's a qualified human right, but a right nonetheless, and correctly so.

"Britain is committed to protecting and promoting that right, by standing up for Christians and other minorities, at home and abroad."

Quite right, too.

10 April 2014 at 18:13  
Blogger Integrity said...

Wow Your Grace,
Are you now an apologist for David Cameron and his Government.
This two faced tongue twister should be ashamed to even mention the word Christ or Jesus.
I know Your Grace that this Blog was Conservative and CofE but lets get things in perspective.
I can only hope that your lack of comment indicates your disdain for the man but not what he said.

10 April 2014 at 18:17  
Blogger Phil Roberts said...

In Germany the other week there was a new Church of all faiths (State funded)

I went inside the interior was circular with a large pool in the middle and a fire pit in the centre

Around the pool was 6 standing stones one with a cross, a moon, Krisha I think and a six pointed star.

there were two blank standing stones with nothing carved on them.

It made me uneasy but the inference was that all religions were equal and equally valid

Rubbish!

Phil

10 April 2014 at 19:06  
Blogger Inspector General in Ordinary said...

{AHEM}

You all do realise that it is more than likely someone else wrote the speech, don’t you ?

Cameron himself might not even know its been released, let alone as to what is in it...


10 April 2014 at 19:29  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

Fine words but it is a secular, humanist and liberal presentation of Christianity. From a Prime Minister of a government responsible for those of all faiths and none, what else could it be?

Jack much prefers Queen Elizabeth's Christmas Messages.

This comment, about a recent visit to Jerusalem, from someone who defines himself as a Christian, was lukewarm and disappointing:

"It was an extraordinary experience to be in those places where so much history began."

Action and not words matter too when it comes to defending Christians world wide - and at home.

10 April 2014 at 19:31  
Blogger Integrity said...

Inspector,
Was it a dummy lookalike that spoke the speech as well?

10 April 2014 at 20:05  
Blogger Inspector General in Ordinary said...

Integrity, dear fellow, it goes on all the time. Does the name John Taylor mean anything to you. He was a black barrister who wrote for Maggie. His reward was the constituency of Cheltenham, a fairly safe Conservative seat at the time. However, a big hoo haa erupted, he being imposed on the Cheltonians, and the seat went to the Liberals. Been with them since. As for Taylor, he ended up in jug. Swindling public funds one recalls...


10 April 2014 at 20:25  
Blogger john in cheshire said...

Of course, the problem is that those who don't believe in God think all religions are the same; and they are not. So, better that Mr Cameron said that freedom to practice Christianity is a sine qua non. But all other religions are subject to a national vote. muslims might like to take their religion and practice it somewhere else because I suspect on a national level, they are not welcome.

10 April 2014 at 20:51  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

JIC: "Of course, the problem is that those who don't believe in God think all religions are the same; and they are not."

Of course we don't. We just think they're all basically not true. A very different thing.

10 April 2014 at 21:06  
Blogger Johnny Rottenborough said...

let’s also think of … the Christians around the world who are ostracised, abused—even murdered—simply for the faith they follow

Call me a nit-picker if you must but I’d be more convinced by Cameron’s concern for Christians if he didn’t send his best wishes to the Muslims ‘around the world’ who, galvanized by ‘their devotion to God’, are abusing and murdering said Christians.

10 April 2014 at 21:18  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

Last month I was in Jerusalem and Bethlehem and I got to see for myself the places where Jesus was born and died.

Interesting omission in that statement.

Personally I find this tribute utilitarian. "Religion is good when it motivates people to do good things." That it would seem is its proper role - indeed its only allowed role. Is it true? Who cares. We now have an anthropocentric view of faith. In the meantime, you can have your religious beliefs but your ability to act on them will be determined by the dominant secular worldview and its belief that maximizing human autonomy is the greatest good.

carl

10 April 2014 at 21:19  
Blogger Marie1797 said...

Praising Christians doesn't come naturally to Cameron it is clear it's not what he's used to doing. Well done to the author!

Now if it were a speech for Eid, he'd be gushing and promising aid.

10 April 2014 at 21:51  
Blogger Inspector General in Ordinary said...


Well done Carl, the Inspector missed that obvious. Still, it’s why he feels comfortable with lieutenants like you around him. As one was saying earlier, it is almost certain that his speech was written for him, and by someone who is a stranger to Christianity...


10 April 2014 at 22:04  
Blogger Phil Roberts said...

Exactly Carl

"The heart of Christianity is to 'love thy neighbour"

He missed out the other bit that came first.

"Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind"

Now here is the clincher

"This is the first and GREATEST commandment,

And it is love thy neighbour AS THY SELF.

A little different then to the normal translation which goes something like this....

Let thy neighbour do what ever thy wants even if it hurts thy self and thy's family by doing so.

Jesus did not say that.

So love they neighbour as they self is not a mandate for Gay marriage, drug liberalisation, abortion etc as at least half the CofE and the conservative party think

Phil






10 April 2014 at 22:25  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

Carl, Happy Jack also missed that. He is ashamed of himself too at not noticing the heart of the Easter message was omitted.

10 April 2014 at 22:27  
Blogger David Hussell said...

A damage limitation exercise if ever I saw one, from our utterly genuine, sincere, Mr Cameron.

As it happens I was in Bethlehem and Jerusalem at the same time as our esteemed PM, but with a very different group. However I didn't notice anything particularly special about the towns because of the Prime Ministerial presence.

I find his speech (which was probably written for him) totally unconvincing. I prefer to judge by results, and not by speeches from politicians approaching elections, especially one from Mr Cameron, the most actively anti-Christian PM this country has ever had inflicted on it. He is attempting, to cynically use the Churches' generosity and practical contributions to society, whilst trampling upon the freedom of individual Christians to live according to their consciences and beliefs, and attacking the Churches' most ancient beliefs and practices.

10 April 2014 at 23:29  
Blogger ukFred said...

After his latest "distraction" with Maria Miller, I had begun to think that Cameron's religion was in a matter of supporting those caught thieving from the public purse and threatening those who have the knowledge to reveal the thievery.

10 April 2014 at 23:35  
Blogger Johnny Rottenborough said...

@ carl jacobs (21:19)—Interesting omission in that statement

No omission at all. It’s a wholly accurate statement of Muslim belief. Jesus was born. Jesus died. End of.

10 April 2014 at 23:45  
Blogger Phil Roberts said...

After listening to him again and watching his body language I felt the last sentence

"So as we approach this festival I'd like to wish everyone, Christians and non-Christians a very happy Easter."

Is the only bit he genuinely believed in.

Phil

11 April 2014 at 05:57  
Blogger Ivan said...


Very good catch, Carl.

11 April 2014 at 06:35  
Blogger Rambling Steve Appleseed said...

This anodyne speech evidently emanates from speechwriter central and is a cheap pitch for the Christian and pseudochristian votes that are being witheld from Dave's 'conservative' party over SSM.

Nothing more.

I don't want (luke)warm words. I want a written constitutional right to free speech.

11 April 2014 at 07:44  
Blogger The Explorer said...

Johnny R @ 23:45

If I'm right, according to Muslim belief Jesus was never crucified (which really makes Easter superfluous); although somebody else may have been.

But he will come back at the end of time to destroy the Cross and establish Islam.

Something like that, anyway.

11 April 2014 at 08:43  
Blogger David Hussell said...

I would be very surprised if any of the Christians that have withdrawn support from Cameron's party, because of his recent legislative experiments, redefining marriage, will be returning to the fold as a result of this sort of empty rhetoric.

11 April 2014 at 08:44  
Blogger Guy Jones said...

I am sorry I do not hold to being granted 'rights' to hold my faith.

Who is he that dispenses these rights?

If Christ has called me and He receives me then the rest can go hang.

11 April 2014 at 09:39  
Blogger William Lewis said...

Guy Jones

Quite right.

As soon as we acknowledge that what we do/believe is a right then we also acknowledge that what we do/believe can be taken away as a right - or "downgraded" as a qualified right. Best to discard such secular, authoritarian constructs for they are Trojan horses.

11 April 2014 at 09:59  
Blogger Ivan said...


Explorer from what I've heard, not only was Jesus not crucified, but in an excess of sardonic humour, Allah prestigitated and lo and behold another was put in his place. The more imaginative believe it was Judas that was placed in his stead. Thus when Muslims claim to respect Christians, it is the respect accorded to fools and the insane, for who but the insane would worship a traitor on the cross, instead of the genuine article.

11 April 2014 at 10:52  
Blogger Johnny Rottenborough said...

@ The Explorer (23:45)—Yes, and the Qur’an gets itself in a real twist trying to explain it:

[4:157] They declared: ‘We have put to death the Messiah Jesus the son of Mary, the apostle of Allah.’ They did not kill him, nor did they crucify him, but they thought they did [literally: he was made to resemble another for them]. Those that disagreed about him were in doubt concerning his death, for what they knew about it was sheer conjecture; they were not sure that they had slain him.

11 April 2014 at 11:13  
Blogger Johnny Rottenborough said...

Make that ‘The Explorer (08:43)’.

11 April 2014 at 11:18  
Blogger Ditari said...

Cameron: "All over the UK, every day, there are countless acts of kindness carried out by those who believe in and follow Christ."

And by those who don't.


But more by those who do, as surveys in the US have shown.

As always, we need to look for the wellspring of the actions - the root of the tree of the fruit. If there hadn't been centuries of a Christianised culture, would atheists in such countries do good things even to the extent that they do?

As atheist Roy Hattersley said, "I never hear of atheist organizations taking food to the poor. You don’t hear of ‘Atheist Aid’ rather like Christian aid."

And atheist Richard Dawkins practically admitted as much when he tried to set up an atheist charity to compete with all the Christian ones conspiucuously active after the Haiti earthquake.

11 April 2014 at 12:10  
Blogger English Pensioner said...

"Religious freedom is an absolute, fundamental human right"
Except for Christianity in the UK, where Atheists and Islam take precedence.
There are so many issues now, where if I spoke about my beliefs in public I could be prosecuted for breaking the law or offending someone. Indeed there are many areas where, if I were still employed, I could lose my job or be fined because of my beliefs.
If Cameron believes what he says, why doesn't he ensure that it is true?

11 April 2014 at 13:16  
Blogger E.xtra S.ensory Blofeld + Tiddles said...

Ditari said...

Cameron: "All over the UK, every day, there are countless acts of kindness carried out by those who believe in and follow Christ."

And by those who don't.

But more by those who do, as surveys in the US have shown.

As always, we need to look for the wellspring of the actions - the root of the tree of the fruit. If there hadn't been centuries of a Christianised culture, would atheists in such countries do good things even to the extent that they do?"

It is much greater than charity, that which Christianity has give our country and the western world, as opposed to atheism and its natural offspring, Communism.

Historians tell us that many of the same social circumstances evident in early 20th century Russia that lead to revolution and Communist takeover prevailed in both Great Britain and France in the 18th century.

Why did France end up with bloody revolution, anarchy, the Reign of Terror and eventually the tyranny of Napoleon, while in contrast, just 30 miles across the Channel, their perennial enemies underwent a quite different revolution?

This ‘revolution’ involved strengthening of democratic institutions; the abolition of the slave trade in Great Britain and its empire, and eventually the whole world; hospital and orphanage reform; and the abolition of child labour.

In short, a general, profound improvement in the lot of the common man, and a true commitment to the rights of man as made in the image of God, developed in Britain. Even animals came to be treated in a more humane manner.

These same historians conclude that it was the Christian revival under men such as Wesley and Whitfield that made the difference between the murderous revolution in France and the benevolent transformation in Britain.

Not that Christianity was perfect or all-pervasive in Britain, nor has it ever been anywhere in the world; but the influence of the Bible and the ‘Christian consensus’ was substantial enough to lead to a supernatural, ‘gentle’ overthrow of the status quo, while France experienced a 'humanist, brutal, anarchic' upheaval.

France eventually reverted to a jealous mimicry of her rival (Blighty) in form though not totally in substance.

Unless a holy and transcendent God has truly spoken and is to be honoured and obeyed, we are all awash in a veritable sea of personal opinion, doing what appears right in modernist eyes, ‘ever learning, and never able to come (or arrive at) to the knowledge of the truth.’ (2 Timothy 3:7)

Blofeld

12 April 2014 at 01:47  
Blogger E.xtra S.ensory Blofeld + Tiddles said...

ps

Matthew Parris had observed in the Times; “Now a confirmed atheist, I’ve become convinced of the enormous contribution that Christian evangelism makes in Africa: sharply distinct from the work of secular NGOs, government projects and international aid efforts. These alone will not do. Education and training alone will not do.

In Africa Christianity changes people’s hearts.
It brings a spiritual transformation. The rebirth is real. The change is good.”

Though ‘conservative’, Parris voiced his support as an MP for ‘gay rights’, and is openly homosexual himself.

However, he has strongly attacked the dishonesty of churchians who pretend that Christianity and homosexual behaviour are compatible—No, God would not have approved of gay bishops, The Times Online, www.timesonline.co.uk, 9 August 2003. Can be read at http://listserv.virtueonline.org/pipermail/virtueonline_listserv.virtueonline.org/2003-August/005613.html

Parris points out, “Jesus was never reluctant to challenge received wisdoms that He wanted to change. He gives no impression that He came into the world to revolutionise sexual mores.

Even our eye, if it offends us, must be plucked out. So this, in summary, is my charge against the Anglican modernists.

Can they point to biblical authority for what, on any estimate, amounts to a disturbing challenge to the values assumed in both Testaments? No.

Can they point to any divinely inspired religious leader since to whom has been revealed God’s benevolent intentions towards homosexuals?

I know of no such saint or holy man. Most have taught the opposite.”

12 April 2014 at 01:48  
Blogger non mouse said...

Thanks for the transcript, Your Grace. I couldn't have stood to watch and listen to that soppy piece of melodrama - still playing on our sympathies about his son's death. The good die young, though; and this one surely went to a better place.

Though ... mayhap ... it's being Easter, Chubby-Chops wants us to understand that he knows how, er, Another felt about the death of His Son?

Whatever - DC remains a by-blow of the royal line, and he hasn't done anything to legitimate his claim to this earthly kingdom: as did John of Gaunt and the Lancastrians/Tudors. So why this euro-puppet patronises us by speechifying like a king, Bliar and Heaven only know.

14 April 2014 at 01:55  

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