Views from the News
Stephen Baker, Manchester
The following article is by Martin Beckford at www.Telegraph.co.uk. The majority of the text is quoted despite its source being a churchman (with whom our readership would have clear differences of opinion) as the statements made are a very significant summary of the spiritual state of the United Kingdom in the twent-first century.
‘The Bishop of Rochester, the Rt Rev Michael Nazir-Ali, claimed the “social and sexual” revolution of the 1960s had led to a steep decline in the influence of Christianity over society which church leaders had failed to resist. He said that in its place, Britain had become gripped by the doctrine of “endless self-indulgence” which had led to the destruction of family life, rising levels of drug abuse and drunkenness and mindless violence on the streets. The bishop warns that the modern politicians’ catchphrases of respect and tolerance will not be strong enough to prevent this collapse of traditional virtues, and said radical Islam is now moving in to fill the void created by the decline of Christianity. His claims, in an article published in the new political magazine, Standpoint, come just days after he accused the Church of England of failing in its duty to convert British Muslims to Christianity. Dr Nazir-Ali claims in the new article that Britain, previously a “rabble of mutually hostile tribes”, would never have become a global empire without the arrival of Christianity. But he said the Church’s influence began to wane during the 1960s, and quotes an academic who blames the loss of “faith and piety among women” for the steep decline in Christian worship. He says Marxist students encouraged a “social and sexual revolution” to which liberal theologians and Church leaders “all but capitulated”. “It is this situation that has created the moral and spiritual vacuum in which we now find ourselves. While the Christian consensus was dissolved, nothing else, except perhaps endless self-indulgence, was put in its place.“. The bishop, who faced death threats earlier this year when he said some parts of Britain had become “no-go areas” for non-Muslims, said Marxism has been exposed as a nonsense but went on, “We are now confronted by another equally serious ideology, that of radical Islamism, which also claims to be comprehensive in scope”. Asking what weapons are available to fight this new “ideological battle”, the bishop said the values trumpeted by modern politicians such as “respect, tolerance and good behaviour” are “hardly adequate for the task before us. The consequences of the loss of this discourse are there for all to see: the destruction of the family because of the alleged parity of different forms of life together; the loss of a father figure, especially for boys, because the role of fathers is deemed otiose; the abuse of substances (including alcohol); the loss of respect for the human person leading to horrendous and mindless attacks on people”.
GOOGLE UNDER FIRE FOR PRO-LIFE AD BAN
Internet giant, Google, is being accused of unlawful discrimination after refusing to take a pro-life advertisement. The Christian Institute planned to advertise its website via a link that would appear when the word ‘abortion’ was typed into the search engine. Google rejected the advertisement on the basis that it does ‘not permit the advertisement of web sites that contain abortion and religion-related content’. The Christian Institute is taking legal action against Google under the Equality Act 2006, arguing that Google accepts advertisements for abortion clinics and secular proabortion sites, a spokesman for the Institute told The Telegraph this week.
Sources: The Telegraph (9/4), Christian Today (10/4)