Comments: foster care case: Evangelical Alliance speaks out

"The Evangelical Alliance has disowned the tactics of the Christian Legal Centre, the fringe group which brought a case against Derby Council on behalf of a Pentecostal couple who feared that their views on gay people would prevent them from fostering children."

What hope is there, if even Andrew Brown can't get it right?

This was a case of Derby Council and the couple jointly seeking legal guidance.

Posted by Erika Baker at Thursday, 3 March 2011 at 10:59am GMT

Do I hear a penny dropping ?

Better than all those pennies spent in vain ...

Posted by Laurence Roberts at Thursday, 3 March 2011 at 11:12am GMT

Even the EA would love to participate in the orgy of "O-vey O-vey" and "Woe is me" but realizes that such self-indulgence is back-firing, already.

It comes to something when the EA and the CI don't wish to look silly --or back another loser !

The Christian Legal Centre is preposterous.

The EA cautions a more 'strategic' approach - I geddit.

Posted by Laurence Roberts at Thursday, 3 March 2011 at 11:16am GMT

'There may also be risks that Christians will be viewed as deliberately engineering conflicts with the courts or pleading privileged treatment.'

I would have thought that it was unlikely that I would commend something said by the EA but their response seems to be more nuanced and understanding than that trumpeted by Melanie Philips, The Daily Telegraph and a host of generally Evangelical organisations. They are also to be congratulated on their awareness of the cumulative effect of the case heard over the past year or two and the special pleading of George Carey. I would hope that their words of caution are heeded.

Posted by Richard Ashby at Thursday, 3 March 2011 at 1:36pm GMT

I suspect the distancing of the CI from the CLC is due to the opening paragraph of this article from Andrew Brown ...

Posted by Andy at Thursday, 3 March 2011 at 7:23pm GMT

Having read the Evangelical Alliance statement, I think they have clearly indicated that the anti-gay activists who encouraged the couple to get a specific declaration of their suitability as foster-parents - despite their anti-gay stance - have overstated their activist agenda.

However, the Christian Institute seems to be still insisting on special treatment for the *Christian* view-point in public affairs, when the reality is that the UK is not a theocratic state. This is also the view of certain Church bishops - like Carey and Nazir-Ali - who seem oblivious of the need to accommodate the various religious and secular views held by assorted multi-cultural elements in the population.

The Church of England does not gain any kudos from such protestations - especially in a time when people are questioning the relationship between the Church and the State, believing that there ought to be a more even-handed treatment of all religious and secular points of view.

Posted by Father Ron Smith at Thursday, 3 March 2011 at 9:17pm GMT

This is actually not the first time that the Evangelical Alliance has taken a balanced and sensible stance but it is refreshing nonetheless.

I think EA has put some effort into thinking and I do stress the word **thinking** through some of these issues. The fact they avoid a knee jerk approach can be helpful in a time of generalised hysteria and the desire to sow divisions between people.

It is also clear that EA read the judgment, which again helps.

Surely we have now come to an end of such cases and can just get on with the - not always easy - task of getting on with one another and ironing out our differences in a sensible and non-hysterical way.

I don't think the culture wars are right for the UK, though I am sure they are good for the US. I would hope that our heritage can help us avoid such divisiveness. Am I hoping for too much?

Maybe it is too much to ask but at least EA are willing to be sensible so maybe it's not impossible. I woulld like to hope that the Established Church can also help in that process......

Posted by Craig Nelson at Friday, 4 March 2011 at 5:42pm GMT
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