Church Leaders gather with former Liberal Democrat Leader to explore how Christians can be salt and light in public life

This afternoon (Tuesday 11 September), a group of Christian leaders from the Affinity network met with the Rt Hon Tim Farron MP, former Leader of the Liberal Democrats, to explore how the church can continue to be salt and light in public life.

The meeting, which took place in central London, brought together church leaders from London and the South East in a round-table style discussion.

Graham Nicholls, Director of Affinity, chaired the meeting which also included a response to the MP's comments from Dr Dave Landrum, Director of Advocacy of the Evangelical Alliance.

During his presentation to delegates, Mr Farron spoke about his own journey of faith and also his recent experience on being a Christian in the public sphere and the lessons about needing to not compromise on faith.

He also spoke candidly of the recent Northern Men's Convention, which Mr Farron opted not to speak at. Reflecting on that decision, Mr Farron spoke about the importance of using precise and measured language from within the evangelical Christian church in order to avoid being misunderstood, which he believed had been a problem for the Northern Men's Convention.

There were also some reflections from Mr Farron on the importance of the church needing to speak more about issues in the public sphere around justice, particularly relating to homelessness, poverty and exploitation.

Following the presentation from Mr Farron, church leaders were invited to participate in a Q & A session with the former Liberal Democrat leader.

Following the event, Graham Nicholls, Director of Affinity said:

"We live in a time when people are questioning the role of Christians in public life and a desire to privatise our faith. This is particularly so in recent days as attendance figures from the Church of England have seen a decline.

Listening to Tim Farron this afternoon, I believe it is important that not just churches within the Affinity network, but all churches, seek to be clear in the beliefs they hold without compromise. I am grateful for the candid nature with which Tim spoke from his own experience.

I have come away from this event with a renewed desire to call the church to not just pray, but to show up in the political process!"


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