Stand Up For Christianity

Time to stand up for Christianity
April 21st, 2011

By Andrew Carey, CEN

It is time for the British to assert their own rights over the petty tyranny of local councils. The latest case is the attitude of Brent Council to a 400-yard ecumenical Good Friday parade in Willesden. Council officials said that because the churches had not applied in time the march could not go ahead, as it has done for the past 13 years. Christians have instead been told they must walk on the pavement because of the ‘strict legal procedure’ and the need
to issue a ‘Traffic Order’. The Council’s procedures demand advertising and a consultation, which takes five weeks.

Church leaders must, of course, ignore the Council this year and parade on the highway, as is their right. But for future years they must refuse to play the bureaucratic game. A simple letter to the Council informing them of their intent to mount a short parade is entirely enough.

The problem for Christians in the current bureaucratic morass is our rightful desire to abide by the law and give Caesar his due deference. Yet when the law is clearly an ass we are better to ignore it entirely.

An even greater difficulty for Christians is when individual rights clash with an anti-Christian animus, which so many public authorities seem to possess. While it is hardly likely that police will arrest those engaged in a Good Friday march, Christians wearing crosses or offering to say a prayer for a colleague have faced disciplinary procedures in their jobs. Civil disobedience will simply not do in those cases.

——————————-
The following is by Archbishop Cranmer

It is a fact that we cannot stand by while individual Christians lose their jobs under these circumstances. A round of court cases and tribunal decisions have shown clearly that under the existing interpretation of the law by judges, the rights of individual Christians come at the bottom of the heap and there is little or nothing we can do without a change in the law. Much more creative solutions are needed rather than a further round of court cases, which only set up further collisions in our badly fractured society.

The latest case is that of an electrician working for a housing association in Yorkshire, who is facing disciplinary action over displaying a small palm cross in his works vehicle. The housing association claims that this defies their diversity policy and that the display of the cross could lead members of the public to identify their company as a Christian organisation. This defies common sense.

Unfortunately there are very few Church leaders who have the courage or wisdom to take up such cases and mediate between individual Christians their employers. And ordinary Christians are so often left with little support from Bishops and local clergy.

It is up to us to highlight these cases, pray for the individuals involved, write letters to our political representatives and seek to change unjust laws.

For God’s sake, it’s Easter: just go out and march
There is story in today’s Daily Mail which is of the genre of those that usually appear around Christmas. You know the sort: ‘Winterval’, ‘Winter Festival’, ‘Winter lights’, ‘Celebrity lights’, ‘Luminous’, ‘Eid/Diwali/Christmas lights’, ‘multi-faith holiday’, school bans on nativity plays and shopping centres clamping down on carol singers due to health and safety fears, etc., etc.

Well, it appears we have our first Easter ‘ban’. Father Hugh MacKenzie, of St Mary Magdalen Roman Catholic Church in Willesden has been told he and his congregation may not march on Good Friday along a 400-yard route, as they have done every Easter for 13 years, because Brent Council say it breaches health and safety regulations. There is now, apparently, ‘strict legal procedure’ the council has to follow before they can permit such marches. And so 200 Christians from four churches – the New Testament Church of God, St Andrew’s Church of England, St Mary Magdalen and Willesden Green Baptist Church – will not be able to march. It has been tradition that the public witness precedes their joint celebration of communion (which is interesting ecumenically, but His Grace won’t go there today).

He is tempted to say that this is one for Father Pickles, but it really isn’t. This is the Queen’s highway, and she is supreme Governor of the Church of England. She is sworn to uphold our customs and traditions, and Easter marches go back just a few centuries.

His Grace advises these churches not to make any fuss: don’t draw parallels with gay pride marches or Muslims blocking roads to pray with impunity; or to Brent’s support for Diwali or Eid celebrations. Just go out and march, as you have done for years. Let them arrest you and bring you to court. And then we will see what excrement hits the fan.

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About Spiritual Messiah Ministries
We are based in Florida, but we also have satellite churches all over the country and international including nations such as UK, Ghana, Uganda, Nigeria, Germany, Australia We officially opened our doors and launched April 6, 2011 and the Lord has truly blessed us. We are truly saving the lost and guiding them back home to God. We are greatly surprised in the speed of the expansion of our ministry. In less than a years time we have already gone international and began the establishment of "home churches" and "satellite churches".

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