A leader for our times

The Church of England - - COMMENT -

Justin Welby is prov­ing him­self to be a con­sid­er­able leader of the Church of Eng­land in times of cri­sis. Hav­ing played his part in de­feat­ing the as­sisted dy­ing bill, he has also been en­ter­ing into the po­lit­i­cal arena and lob­by­ing on be­half of Syria’s Chris­tians and other mi­nori­ties.

Rightly he has pointed out to po­lit­i­cal lead­ers that Bri­tish gov­ern­ment prom­ises to take refugees from UN camps ig­nore the plight of Chris­tians. As the per­se­cuted church char­ity Barn­abas Fund has pointed out, Syr­ian Chris­tians are fear­ful of or­gan­ised Is­lamist groups in the camps. Chris­tians are to be found hid­ing in pri­vate homes and they need very spe­cific help.

Though Chris­tians must sup­port all those in need, they have a spe­cial re­spon­si­bil­ity for their broth­ers and sis­ters in Christ, es­pe­cially at times of ma­jor per­se­cu­tion. Chris­tians, and other mi­nor­ity groups, are fac­ing unique hard­ship in Syria and Iraq. Yet the reg­u­la­tions and rules of the in­ter­na­tional com­mu­nity, which pre­vent dis­crim­i­na­tion, re­sult in more suf­fer­ing to those who are suf­fer­ing most.

By of­fer­ing no spe­cific help to suit the needs of mi­nor­ity groups, the UN ef­fec­tively dis­crim­i­nates against them.

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