Wednesday, December 14, 2005

Lord Carey Defends Wearing of Religious Jewelry

NEVER one to shy away from what it means to be ‘British’, Lord Carey of Clifton’s most recent outburst over the weekend has accelerated the debate over the wearing of religious jewellery in British schools. Speaking in a GMTV interview on Sunday morning, the former Archbishop of Canterbury took a swipe at the farcical levels of political correctness that have permeated our society. Last week, Sam Cooke, 16, was sent home from her school in Derby by the deputy headmaster for refusing to remove her crucifix necklace. Lord Carey branded the fiasco as ‘nonsense’ and warned England risked facing a move towards French attitudes. He said: “I think at the one level is a view around that practising Christians and all the symbols that go with it embarrasses people of other faiths and of course that is nonsense because the Jews and Muslims are only too delighted that Christians take a greater pride in the cross.”He added: “What does worry me is that it may represent a worrying hostility towards Christianity and all religions by a minority of people in leadership today who want to privatise religion, push it to the boundaries, not allow it a voice in the public arena and go the way of France.” A cross, he said, was an expression of faith and not to be considered ‘jewellery’. He urged any pupil faced with a similar dilemma to confront the headmaster and explain the importance of religious imagery. Last month Lord Carey backed the Archbishop of York, Dr John Sentamu’s call for the English to celebrate St George’s day in proper fashion. Echoing these words he said: “I think what we need to recover is identity, what it is to be British today and to be British I cannot understand how you can be British without having that core faith at the heart, which is Christianity.” When asked if it was possible to appreciate Britishness without an appreciation of Christian faith he replied: “If you take the Christian faith out of British identity what have you left?”

Alex Delmar-Morgan in the Church of England Newspaper

(See Free Piglet on this blog, posted on 6/12/05)

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