Archbishop asks Government about working with grassroots religious organisations for peace in Nigeria


archbishops-canterbury-240117On 18th July 2017, Baroness Cox asked Her Majesty’s Government “what their assessment of recent developments in the Northern and Central Belt States in Nigeria were”. The Archbishop of Canterbury, Most Revd Justin Welby, asked a follow-up question. 

The Archbishop of Canterbury: My Lords, does the Minister agree that there needs to be work both at grass roots and at the highest level? Many of the signs we are seeing in Nigeria at the moment—particularly the threats against the Igbo, which are happily diminishing—bring back to mind the terrible events immediately prior to the outbreak of war in 1967? What work are the British Government doing with partners locally, through their exceptionally gifted high commission and DfID staff, to work with grass-roots organisations, including religious organisations, which are capable of reaching the local leaders at the most vulnerable level? Continue reading

Bishop of Newcastle raises concerns around mental health in schools


On 17th July 2017, Baroness Lawrence of Clarendon asked “Her Majesty’s Government when they intend to bring forward proposals to reform Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services as outlined in their 2017 manifesto.” The Bishop of Newcastle, the Rt Rev Christine Hardman followed up with a question on mental health in schools. 

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Bishop of Southwark asks Government about Iraqi refugee numbers in UK


On 14th July 2017 the Bishop of Southwark, Rt Revd Christopher Chessun, received a written answer from Government about refugee resettlement numbers:

The Lord Bishop of Southwark to ask Her Majesty’s Government how many Iraqi refugees they have resettled since 2014 under (1) the Vulnerable Children’s Resettlement Scheme (VCRS), and (2) other global resettlement schemes such as Gateway and Mandate. Continue reading

Bishop of Leeds highlights rocketing number of food bank users in employment


On 13th July 2017,  Lord Bird asked the Government “what steps they are taking to prioritise their focus on the root causes of poverty and disadvantage.” The Bishop of Leeds, the Rt Rev. Nick Baines, asked a question in follow up.

The Lord Bishop of Leeds: My Lords, does the Minister agree that there is a problem here, in that we want to applaud the employment figures released today but, at the same time, we need to recognise that it is people in employment who are using our food banks, where the numbers have rocketed in the last few years? Therefore, the simple statement that we applaud the rise in employment disguises a deeper problem.

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Bishop of Coventry asks Government about peace efforts in Central African Republic


On 13th July 2017, the Bishop of Coventry, Rt Revd Christopher Cocksworth, received a written answer to a question about the Central African Republic:

The Lord Bishop of Coventry: To ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of the peace accord between the government of the Central African Republic and 13 armed groups, signed in Rome on 19 June. Continue reading

Caroline Spelman raises plight of displaced Christians and religious minorities in Mosul, Iraq


On 12th July 2017 the Secretary of State for International Development, Rt Hon Priri Patel MP, made a statement to the House of Commons about the humanitarian situation in Mosul, Iraq. The Second Church Estates Commissioner, Rt Hon Dame Caroline Spelman MP, asked a follow up question:

Dame Caroline Spelman (Meriden) (Con): Mosul was home to one of the oldest Christian communities in the region, but religious minorities suffered dreadfully at the hands of ISIS. What can DFID do to ensure that such minorities are able to return to their place of origin? Continue reading

Bishop of St Albans asks Government to raise the case of Asia Bibi with Pakistan


On 12th July 2017 the Bishop of St Albans received a written answer to a question on the case of Asia Bibi, a Christian detained in Pakistan on charges of blasphemy:

The Lord Bishop of St Albans: To ask Her Majesty’s Government, in the light of the adjournment of Asia Bibi’s appeal, what representations, if any, they have made on her behalf to the government of Pakistan regarding reports that (1) there is a lack of information about when her appeal will be heard, and (2) that she is still being kept in solitary confinement. Continue reading