This is our truth, tell us yours
While I was out walking this afternoon a group of protesters set up camp on a lawn at Westminster Abbey. They are protesting the condems plans to end the Independent living fund. ILF is vital for those with the most severe disabilities, allowing people to live independent lives with dignity. ILF moved away from the “does he take sugar” attitude towards people with disabilities and placed them at the centre of decisions made about their care needs. Removing it is a step back to putting people in care homes, in institutions, in the hands of those “who know best”.
As a Christian I was horrified to see that the authorities at Westminster Abbey have called in the police to clear the protesters. This contradicts everything Jesus had to say about treatment of the poor, the vulnerable, the disabled, and breaking the law. This post is brief, it is a plea to John Hall, the Dean of Westminster, and all those involved to reconsider, to remember their scripture, and to stand with, not against the protesters.
When friends of a person with disabilities broke through the roof of a private property, did Jesus report them for trespass and vandalism?
It is not just morally right, it is commanded to us as Christians that we stand with the poor, the oppressed, the disabled.
Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? 38 When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? 39 When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?’
40 “The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me
That the clergy are failing here, as many did at St Pauls, speaks to a failure within the Church of England to see itself as anything but an arm of the state, suitable for royal weddings, not for living out the Word in actions. If you are a Christian reading this, speak out, the church cannot be allowed to forget its real mission, or the commandments it is supposed to live by.
More about the ILF here http://www.independentliving-fightback.uk/online/?page_id=52
Please if you are able, whatever your faith, spread the word, support the protest, disabled people are dying under the condem policies, at the hands of ATOS, this must stop.
DPAC have told me they have now left the site, overwhelmed by the police presence, with no support from the Abbey. I am ashamed to share the same faith as the clergy within Westminster Abbey.