On the 7th December last year, a report was published by the Commission on Religion and belief in British Public Life, called “Living with Difference”. It represented two years of work, 200 public submissions and a number of meetings across the country designed to respond to a number of changing facts about our society.
- The existence of “a large proportion of people who identify themselves as not religious”
- “a growth in religions other than Christianity, and in branches of Christianity such as the Evangelical and Pentecostal churches”
- “the growth of fanaticism”
- “a suspicion amongst many that religion is a significant source of the world’s ills”
- “a blanket denial by others of the legitimacy of non-religious approaches to life”
- “Forms of hatred such as Islamophobia and antisemitism”
We are becoming, as they say, a ‘pluralistic’ society. In other words, where once our society tended to view issues from a Christian standpoint, now there are many points of view demanding to be heard, demanding to have a voice in shaping our laws, our values, and our national identity.
How should we respond?