17 October 2006


Rather than religion keeping out of politics, "Christians should adopt an ethically informed and rationally engaged critique of all political parties and all politicians". This recent statement came from what might appear to be an unlikely source – a senior member of the Australian Parliament.

In an article which appeared in the Sydney Morning Herald the shadow minister for Foreign Affairs, Kevin Rudd, argued against the view that religion is a purely personal and private affair and urged a renewed emphasis on the social justice tradition of Christianity.

The shadow minister has regularly expressed this view in a series of interviews, articles and speeches over the past few months. They can be viewed here

In issuing his call he is also consistent with the teaching of Pope Benedict XVI in his encyclical "Deus Caritas Est" published earlier this year where it is stated "the Church wishes to help form consciences in political life and to stimulate greater insight into the authentic requirements of justice as well as greater readiness to act accordingly" and "the Church is duty-bound to offer….. her own specific contribution towards understanding the requirements of justice and achieving them politically."(Article 28)

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