NWCT church leaders make Election statement

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NWCT church leaders make Election statement

Bishop Peter Collins has joined with other Norfolk and Waveney senior church leaders to encourage Christians to engage with candidates, draw attention to the big issues of our time, to pray and then to vote in the forthcoming General Election

Joint Statement on the Forthcoming General Election 

From the Leaders of Churches Together in Norfolk and Waveney (NWCT)

With the General Election set for July 4, we, the senior church leaders of Churches Together in Norfolk and Waveney, wish to make the following statement.
This election is being contested against the backdrop of deep and profound challenges around issues such as poverty, the cost-of-living crisis, access to health and caring services, social justice and inclusion, as well as how we welcome refugees, manage migration, and respond to the ongoing debate about assisted dying.  The threat to the environment from climate change and the ongoing tragic wars in Sudan, Ukraine and Gaza add to a sense of crisis, which represents a significant challenge for whichever party is elected.

We pray that those elected to office have the wisdom, compassion and courage to deal with the multitude of challenges and issues our country faces. 
We celebrate and reaffirm our love for God and our fellow human beings, as well as our faith and hope in God and in one another. This motivates us to pray for all those offering themselves as candidates in the election and give thanks for those who dedicate themselves to the high standards of public service.
We believe that all have a duty to cast a vote and should actively, but respectfully, engage with and listen to the candidates so that our vote is well informed.  For this reason, we are inviting churches and Churches Together Groups across Norfolk and Waveney to reach out to their local candidates ahead of the election so as to practise the culture of good encounter with our neighbours.
We believe that the General Election is a real opportunity for all Christians to bring attention to the big issues of our time, to encourage our politicians to focus on the common good and value the human dignity of all. 
In the name of our Risen Lord, Jesus Christ, amen.
Signed by: 

Rev Canon Dr Julian Pursehouse, Chair of East Anglia Methodist District
Major Howard Russell, East of England Divisional Commander for the Salvation Army
Ms Liz Hoffbauer, The Society of Friends – Quakers
Rev Lythan Nevard, Moderator for the Eastern Synod URC
Rev David Mayne, Regional Minister Team Leader for the Eastern Baptist Association
Rt Rev Peter Collins, Catholic Bishop of East Anglia
Rt Rev Graham Usher, Diocesan Bishop of Norwich in the Church of England 

Dr Ian Watson, County Ecumenical Officer for NWCT, adds: “There are many good General Election resources available to our local churches and Churches Together Groups in Norfolk and Waveney.   These can be accessed through the relevant denominational websites.   However, a good starting point is the Election website set up by Churches Together in Britain and Ireland (CTBI).   This is supported by Churches Together in England (CTE) and all the main denominations.  It is a one stop shop for all relevant resources, for example, voter registration, engaging with prospective candidates, organising hustings and so forth.   It is available by clicking here

There is also a guide to the General Election in Norfolk on the Christian news website Network Norfolk