Bishop of Southwark – challenges to parliamentary democracy posed by referendums

On 19th July Lord Higgins led a debate on the motion, “That this House takes note of the impact on parliamentary democracy in the United Kingdom of the use of referendums.” The Bishop of Southwark, Rt Revd Christopher Chessun, spoke in the debate:

The Lord Bishop of Southwark: My Lords, I, too, congratulate the noble Lord, Lord Higgins, on securing the debate, which, as others have observed, is timely. A man who secured a silver medal in the 440 yards relay in the Commonwealth Games in 1950 knows how to pace himself. I also congratulate the noble Lord, Lord Pickles, on his maiden speech with all its fascinating revelations. I look forward to the maiden speech of the noble Lord, Lord Anderson of Ipswich, shortly.

Of course, I acknowledge that the United Kingdom cherishes a parliamentary democracy. That key point, and all that flows from it, has been powerfully argued by the noble Lord, Lord Higgins. It is the genius of this country that over time we have made use of ancient yet enduring institutions and constantly evolving constitutional practices to serve a thoroughly modern society. The Church was present in the counsels that predated Parliament and the estates that first gathered here. It has witnessed both the supremacy of the other place and the extension of the franchise. We are being looked down upon in stone effigy by those who witnessed Magna Carta, including two archbishops. Continue reading “Bishop of Southwark – challenges to parliamentary democracy posed by referendums”

Bishop of Southwark says persecuted Christians in Middle East a humanitarian priority

On 19th July 2018 Baroness Berridge asked the Government “what plans, if any, they have to appoint an Ambassador on Freedom of Religion or Belief.” The Bishop of Southwark, Rt Revd Christopher Chessun, asked a follow-up question:

The Lord Bishop of Southwark: My Lords, I too extend my congratulations and those of the Lords spiritual to the noble Lord, Lord Ahmad, on this appointment. Does he agree that in several countries of the Middle East, where the Christian faith has existed since the time of the apostles—Iraq, Syria and Egypt among them—the scale of persecution renders the condition of the remaining Christian communities one of great humanitarian priority? Continue reading “Bishop of Southwark says persecuted Christians in Middle East a humanitarian priority”

Bishop of Southwark says children should be taught about vocation to serve

On 18th July 2018 Baroness Garden of Frognal asked Her Majesty’s Government “what plans they have to increase knowledge of work skills, careers and jobs amongst primary school children.” The Bishop of Southwark, Rt Revd Christopher Chessun, asked a follow-up question:

The Lord Bishop of Southwark: My Lords, given the importance of public service and volunteering in our nation, will the Minister give priority to communicating the vocation to serve as part of the formation of our young people? Continue reading “Bishop of Southwark says children should be taught about vocation to serve”

Bishop of Southwark describes commuter rail services in his diocese as unreliable, expensive and inadequate

On 17th July 2018 Lord Bradshaw asked Her Majesty’s Government “what progress has been made in the inquiry by the Office of Rail and Road, led by Stephen Glaister, into the implementation of the new railway timetables on 20 May”. The Bishop of Southwark, Rt Revd Christopher Chessun, asked a follow up question:

The Lord Bishop of Southwark: Noble Lords should be aware that my diocese extends across most of south London and east Surrey. Since the availability of employment and the affordability of housing are at an increasing distance from each other for a great and growing proportion of the population, people need a rail system of adequate capacity, affordable to their means, which is utterly reliable and efficient in its running. Does the Minister accept that the current arrangements do not deliver these criteria? Is there a proper sense of urgency about addressing this matter? Continue reading “Bishop of Southwark describes commuter rail services in his diocese as unreliable, expensive and inadequate”

Bishop of Southwark asks Government about historic immigration removals

On 21st June 2018 the Bishop of Southwark, Rt Revd Christopher Chessun, received a written answer to a question on historic immigration removals:

The Lord Bishop of Southwark:  To ask Her Majesty’s Government, further to the Written Statement by the Secretary of State for the Home Department on 24 May (HCWS722), how many non-documented Commonwealth citizens, other than those from Caribbean nations, have been removed from the UK while claiming to have been settled here (1) on 1 January 1973, and (2) between 1973 and 1988. Continue reading “Bishop of Southwark asks Government about historic immigration removals”

Bishop of Southwark asks about access to medical care for injured protesters in Gaza

On 24th May the Bishop of Southwark, Rt Revd Christopher Chessun, received a written answer to a question on access to medical care in Gaza for those injured in recent protests:
The Lord Bishop of Southwark: To ask Her Majesty’s Government what discussions they have had with the government of Israel about the
scale of acute and long-term medical care available to those injured in the protests at the border with Gaza between 30 March and 14 May, including the provision of increased resources in Gaza and access to facilities on the West Bank and in Israel. [HL7951]

Continue reading “Bishop of Southwark asks about access to medical care for injured protesters in Gaza”

Bishop of Southwark receives written answers to questions on Syria

SouthwarkOn the 9th April 2018 the Bishop of Southwark, the Rt Revd Christopher Chessun, received written answers to three questions about Syria:

 

The Bishop of Southwark: To ask Her Majesty’s Government what steps they are taking (1) to ensure that there is no reduction in the level of UK funding to alleviate the humanitarian crisis in Syria, and (2) to aid the relief effort in neighbouring countries in 2018–19. Continue reading “Bishop of Southwark receives written answers to questions on Syria”