Wednesday, 25 January 2012

Reasons to keep the bishops in the House of Lords

(even Rowan Williams)

1. Because 26 Lords Spiritual sitting alongside other elected members in a largely toothless revising chamber do not a theocracy make.

2. Because they are at least as likely to have their hearts in the right place as the politicos they rub shoulders with.

3. Because, whilst most are the kind of hand-wringing Guardian readers who think people are going to starve if their benefits are restricted to, er, more than a C of E priest gets, if we wait long enough another George Carey may come along.

4. Because their presence is a nod to fourteen or so centuries of unbroken Christian tradition which have shaped even militant atheists far more than they care to realise.

5. Because on many ethical issues they do in fact speak for many people in other Christian denominations and of other faiths.

6. Because if it ain't broke don't fix it.

7. Because it annoys Tom Chivers.

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