467: CHRISTIANS ON THE LEFT (UK)

417

[london graffiti]

“A very warm welcome to Zingcreed, the post-Christian blog that looks for convergences between Christianity and Socialism (amongst other things). Our starting points are (a) what Jesus actually said and did, putting Paul on the back burner, and (b) Liberation Theology of the 1970’s Latin American version. To this end the blog has assembled a set of biographies of ‘Red Christians’ and a library of ‘Red Christian Documents’ (See alphabetical index on title page.)
I used to be on the executive committee of the Christian Socialist Movement when Rev’d Lord Donald Soper was in charge  (not that he often came to meetings).  This was before it affiliated with the Labour Party. A certain Tony Blair was a member then, before he became Prime Minister, though I must say that the only time I ever rubbed shoulders with him was in the Archway swimming pool in Islington!
I left the CSM on an issue of principle: they refused to accept an ad from the Gay Christian Movement. To hear radical socialist Christians spouting Leviticus in support of their homophobic views was a sickening thing. Fortunately, the CSM seems to have moved on since then; it’s even changed its name. I’ve taken the liberty of quoting 2 items off its website, without permission but with acknowledgement. You can see more on thecsm.org.uk or on christiansontheleft.org.uk.  I wish them well.
In solidarity,
Peter Turner, M.A., M.Sc.”

444

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Thanks for visiting our website! We hope you enjoy exploring it and finding out more about Christians on the Left. We exist to support, resource and network Christians involved on the left of politics in the UK. We are growing as a movement and have 1500 members, including 40 MPs and 15 peers.

Our primary identity is in Christ, not a political ideology, but our reading of scripture inevitably leads us to “speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves”, standing against injustice in all its forms, on the side of poor and needy.

We believe that in his wisdom, God knows us better than we know ourselves, including our tendency towards selfishness as individuals and communities. So we believe that in the pattern of Biblical traditions such as Sabbath and Jubilee, our systems and structures should be ordered in a way that mitigates the inevitable trickle up of power and wealth towards the powerful and the wealthy.

Wise boundaries simply protect us from ourselves and from exploiting fellow humans, not to mention the rest of creation. Any healthy individual or relationship needs boundaries, and so do nations and economies. They encourage behaviour that serves the common good. An economy must be the servant of the people, not its master. We stand against the attempted separation of family life from economic life.

But the change we seek cannot be engineered solely from outside the systems and structures of our world. We are a movement who believe that annoying as it may often be, politics matters. We do not have an option to opt out. For too long as believers we have been shouting from the sidelines rather than getting on the pitch.

This leads Christians on the Left to be involved in many things: prayer, campaigning, standing for election to local, regional, national and European bodies, political theology and communication training, parliamentary events, local groups, written resources, neighbourhood service projects, lectures, and research.

If you’d like to get more involved, and you’re not already a member, then you can join online here orcontact us for a membership form.

                                                               – Andy Flannagan, Director, Christians on the Left

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