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By challenging the spread of Sharia law, the archbishop of Canterbury is finally fighting for Christian values

So, reports Melanie Phillips in Mondays Times.There is a paywall so I’ll summarize:   

The Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, has finally admitted in his new book, Reimagining Britain that that Sharia law should never become part of the British legal system because it is incompatible with British laws.

Hallelujah. 

The Church of England has a recent history of ‘appeasement’ with Welby’s predecessor, Lord Williams, suggesting in 2008 that the adaption of some aspects of Sharia Law would be ‘unavoidable’. Williams’ predecessor, Lord Carey, caught flack back in the day for saying that although most Muslims were “honourable and good people” Islam stood in opposition to “practically every other world religion”. 

Although Sharia has no legal authority in Britain, nevertheless it has developed as a parallel form of jurisdiction in practice if not law. 

The basic principle of a liberal democracy, is one law for all, Phillips says. Minorities should be able to establish their own communities of faith and culture, but these must not conflict with the fundamental laws and values of the host culture. 

The retreat of Christianity in European culture has left a vacuum that is being filled by Islamic cultural colonialism. Since religion is essential for cultural health and coherence, post-Christian society makes the (false) assumption that secularism promotes freedom whilst Christianity divides. Phillips argues that it is in fact the freedom and equality found in basic Biblical precepts that bind and secularism that has shattered our sense of cohesion.

The hollowing-out process has been aided and abetted by the Church of England itself, which has internalised the view that Christian values are no better (and possibly worse) than those of other cultures. In this weakened state it has failed to stand up for persecuted Christians in the developing world and has sought to appease fanaticism by minimising or denying the differences between Christianity and Islam. 

Examples of this given in Phillips’ article are: a 2002 Christian-Muslim seminar entitled Building Bridges convened by the then Archbishop of Canterbury in which papers given suggested equivalence even unity between the two faiths; and Bishop Kenneth Cragg who stated: “Magnificat and Allahu akbar are the sure doxologies with which our two faiths begin”.

The Archbishop, Phillips says, has spoken with courage about the need to resist Sharia. But she also thinks that his analysis - which emphasises secondary signs of cultural decay such as ‘rootlessness’, or the suggestion that different faiths must play equivalent roles in society -  undermines the need to reestablish Christian faith as the bedrock of that society.   

So, don’t get too excited: 

The mouse may have roared — but it remains, alas, a mouse.

 

 


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