There are lots of left wing Anglicans too!

Published 28 January 2014  |  
PA

"Many Christians are active on the left of the political spectrum, including Church of England members," says Christians on the Left.

The group, formerly the Christian Socialist Movement, was responding to yesterday's coverage of the Theos report "Voting and values in Britain: does religion count?".

The report's finding reinforced the stereotype of the Church of England being "the Tory Party at prayer" by finding that more Anglicans vote Conservative.

Christians on the Left said in its response that despite this finding, there is still significant leftist sympathy and activism in the church.

Christians on the Left director, Andy Flannagan said: "This is a fascinating report which needs to be read together with other studies."

He pointed to a recent Demos report which found that people of faith tend to hold left of centre views and be more active in their local communities.

With some exceptions, the Theos study found that self-identifying Anglicans traditionally vote Conservative more often than Labour, the exceptions being 1966 and 1997. In 2010, they were nearly twice as likely to vote Conservative as Catholics.

By contrast, since 1959, self-identifying Catholics have mostly voted Labour, often by wide margins.

The Theos study also noted that although generally Anglicans are less supportive of the welfare state than Catholics, Anglican support for it rises as their attendance level increases, which is not the case for Catholics.

Christians on the Left's political communications officer Stephen Beer said: "Faith permeates through our lives and the way we think about the world, even if we often come to the same or similar conclusions as our friends and neighbours on issues such as the economy or social justice."

He then suggested there was convergence on many issues among Christians regardless of their political leanings. 

"There is a large proportion of Christians in this country who are actively pursuing causes that we would regard as progressive. These can range from running food banks to campaigning against global poverty and injustice."

Reprints

More News in UK