Guilt and Persecution

The United Kingdom is beset by a post-colonial guilt that makes it likely to ignore pleas for help from Christians around the world who are persecuted for their faith, the Bishop of Truro has said.

The Rt. Rev. Philip Mounstephen believes that while people of many faiths are persecuted, Christians are more likely than others to be victims.

Pew Center statistics gathered from 144 countries indicate a steady rise in harassment of Christians.

“There is a lot of post-colonial guilt around a residual sense that the Christian faith is an expression of white Western privilege,” the bishop told The Times after bombings of churches and hotels in Sri Lanka on Easter Day. “Whereas actually the Christian faith is overwhelmingly a phenomenon of the … global poor and people who by their very socioeconomic status are vulnerable.”

The bishop leads a government study on the levels of global persecution of Christians. It is expected to be published in June.

“I don’t want to make a special case for Christians, but I think there is a significant deficit to be made up,” he said. “If 80 percent of discrimination and persecution globally is directed against one faith group, then there is an imbalance.”

John Martin


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