Vicar's Letter September 2015
When I see reports of Moslem women being attacked because of their choice to wear religious dress, others ridiculed because they are wearing a cross, still more abused because they wear a kipa or yarmulke etc, etc I wonder who it is perpetrating this violations?
Abroad it is faith against faith – Hindus v Buddhists, Moslem v Hindus, and everyone against the Christians it would seem... but here? Here, in this nation, we do not have the day to day aggravation of faith v faith. Yes it flares, yet so often it is within a faith itself that violence erupt -protestant v catholic – but we generally live peaceably alongside each other. So who are the perpetrators???
So much prejudice and bigotry is kindled by fear, mistrust and by a need to protect the known and understood, and to reject and despise the unknown and misunderstood.
So much prejudice and bigotry is exercised by those of no faith at all and who cannot find it within themselves to see individuals and human beings but rather a preformed judgement and opinion
that festers and rankles, producing a hostile bitterness that results in the lashing out blindly in ways of violence and hatred.
This resolution offers an opportunity to step back and value each other; Jesus said ‘Love your neighbour…’ he did not qualify or dictate what their faith or culture should be… but I guess those bound up with embittered prejudices really don’t care. Sad.
Revd Jane Parry