Tuesday, May 04, 2010

Values to guide voters

The Norfolk and Waveney Church Leaders have issued a joint statement on the values which they believe should guide voters in the General Election.

General Election - 6th May 2010

A Statement from the Church Leaders of Norfolk and Waveney

On 6th May the people of Norfolk and Waveney will choose our representatives in Parliament at the General Election. Five years ago almost four in ten of those registered to vote did not do so. As Church Leaders in this area we encourage everyone to exercise their right to vote and to do so with the wellbeing of all people in our communities in mind.

The Churches in our area have hosted some of the best attended hustings during this election campaign and have done so in service to the wider community. The same area’s tradition of hospitality is well reflected in this area’s notable history of welcoming people fleeing persecution elsewhere in Europe, sometimes on religious grounds. As Christian leaders in this generation we believe that living together with mutual respect remains the foundation of a civilised society. All human beings are created equally in the image of God. That is why racism is a sin. Christ calls us to love our neighbours as ourselves and in this forthcoming election we believe it is right to be vigilant about any party or individual candidate seeking to use people’s fears for their own wellbeing to stir racial or religious hatred.

Inevitably this is an election taking place when people are anxious about their jobs, finances and future. We pray that the best and most generous traditions of our national life will guide all voters on May 6th.

The Rt. Revd. Michael Evans, Bishop of East Anglia (Roman Catholic)
Major David Jackson, Divisional Commander, Anglia Division of the Salvation Army
The Rt. Revd. Graham James, Bishop of Norwich (Church of England)
The Revd. Richard Lewis, Regional Minister, Baptist Union of Great Britain
John Myhill, Norfolk Representative of the Society of Friends
The Revd. Graham Thompson, Chair, East Anglia District of the Methodist Church
The Revd. Paul Whittle, Moderator, Eastern Province, United Reformed Church

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