Pas­tor’s show of unity in protest at Trump’s ban

Bap­tist min­is­ter is or­gan­is­ing multi-faith event in Yiewsley

Harefield Gazette - - NEWS - By Goolis­tan Cooper goolis­tan.cooper@trin­i­tymir­

A CHURCH pas­tor is ar­rang­ing a multi-faith evening as a show of op­po­si­tion to Don­ald Trump’s “ap­palling” im­mi­gra­tion pol­icy.

Rich Blake-Lobb from Yiewsley Bap­tist Church says he wants to demon­strate the Hilling­don com­mu­nity is united in peace, love and unity, and op­posed to all forms of tyranny.

He called the ex­ec­u­tive order signed by Don­ald Trump which banned cit­i­zens from seven coun­tries with a ma­jor­ity Mus­lim pop­u­la­tion “dis­crim­i­na­tory and di­vi­sive” and said he was “ashamed” that Trump had the sup­port of so many “white evan­gel­i­cal Chris­tians”.

The pas­tor said he felt com­pelled to or­gan­ise the event, which takes place at the church in Col­ham Av­enue at 7pm on Thurs­day, Fe­bru­ary 2.

He said: “Peo­ple are pe­ti­tion­ing and protest­ing around the world and I be­lieve we should come to­gether to high­light our unity. As a sym­bol of sol­i­dar­ity with our Mus­lim neigh­bours, to build re­la­tion­ships with one an­other and cre­ate bridges be­tween our dif­fer­ent faiths I pro­pose that we come to­gether this week to show that here in the London Bor­ough of Hilling­don we are united against all forms of tyranny and sup­port peace.”

The event, which is ex­pected to in­clude talks, comes as West­min­ster Coun­cil is be­ing urged to not work with the gov­ern­ment in ar­rang­ing a state visit for Don­ald Trump.

And that comes on the back of more than a mil­lion peo­ple in the coun­try sign­ing a pe­ti­tion op­pos­ing his visit to the UK.

Revd Blake-Lobb hopes the event will demon­strate a wel­com­ing and car­ing and united com­mu­nity, and has asked lead­ers of dif­fer­ent faiths and com­mu­ni­ties, and mem­bers of Hilling­don Coun­cil, to at­tend.

And he hit out at those who con­tinue to sup­port the pres­i­dent in America. He said: “It has been widely re­ported that white, evan­gel­i­cal Chris­tian’s (in­clud­ing Bap­tists) sup­ported Pres­i­dent Trump’s elec­tion and con­tinue to sup­port him as he signs ex­ec­u­tive or­ders that are dis­crim­i­na­tory and di­vi­sive.

“I am white Bri­tish, a Chris­tian and would most likely be de­scribed as evan­gel­i­cal. I am em­bar­rassed and ashamed of the things that are be­ing said in the name of the re­li­gion that I care for deeply.

“I and many of my fel­low evan­gel­i­cal Chris­tians do not agree with Pres­i­dent Trump or with those who sup­port him.”

The pas­tor is also plan­ning to at­tend an open day at Hayes Mus­lim Cen­tre on Satur­day and Sun­day (Fe­bru­ary 4 and 5), and is en­cour­ag­ing his con­gre­ga­tion to do the same.

The event at Yiewsley Bap­tist Church is open to ev­ery­one.

HOPE: Rich Blake-Lobb, pas­tor at Yiewsley Bap­tist Church, out­side the church, where an event to pro­mote unity and op­pose tyranny

PROTEST: De­mon­stra­tors chant dur­ing a protest out­side Down­ing Street against US Pres­i­dent Don­ald Trump’s ban on travel from seven Mus­lim coun­tries

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