Christians set up new pro-independence group

Dr David Stevenson, left, Dennis Canavan, and John Shedden help launch Christians For Independence in Edinburgh. Picture: Jane Barlow
Dr David Stevenson, left, Dennis Canavan, and John Shedden help launch Christians For Independence in Edinburgh. Picture: Jane Barlow
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SCOTTISH INDEPENDENCE: A new cross-party group of pro-independence voters, made up of a cross-denominational group of Christians, was launched in Edinburgh this morning.

Christians for Independence consists of a wide range of individuals from a spectrum of churches and political parties. The organisation held its launch today in Edinburgh’s Scottish Storytelling Centre.

The launch also unveiled plans for a new initiative to engage Scotland’s churches in the run-up to September’s ballot. The Faith in Scotland’s Future project will see the group hold meetings all across Scotland, with aims to listen to the viewpoints and queries of churches on the issues of independence.

In attendance at the event were several key figures from the Yes campaign including David Thompson MSP, convener of Christians for Independence, and former Labour MP Dennis Canavan, chairman of the Yes Scotland Advisory board, who both addressed the group.

Pointing out the key role Christians played in Scottish politics, Mr Thompson said: “Christians play a hugely significant and overwhelmingly positive role in contemporary Scotland. Over 50 per cent of Scots describe themselves as Christian. It’s also estimated that over 12 times as many people went to church this weekend than went to Scottish Premiership football.

“It is therefore imperative that anybody seeking to propose a new constitutional settlement for Scotland engages in a serious and respectful way with our churches.”   

He then added that he hoped the group’s initiative would be able to communicate with those churches in a meaningful way to ensure their voices were heard in the coming months.

He added that it was Christians for Independence’s firm belief that a Yes vote was the only way forward.

Mr Thompson said: “It is the firm proposition of Christians for Independence that a vote for self-governance in September’s referendum gives Scottish Christians the best platform upon which to work collaboratively with others in building a more socially just society at home and abroad. That job begins today.”

Mr Canavan welcomed Christians for Independence, saying that together with Yes Scotland they would work to create a fairer, more just society in Scotland, should the country vote Yes:

“Yes Scotland is a broad campaign, embracing people of different cultures and different faiths. We warmly welcome the launch of Christians for Independence.

“Christians have traditionally campaigned for justice and peace, values which are shared by many other people in Yes Scotland. An independent Scotland will mean ridding Scotland of nuclear weapons and helping to build a caring, sharing society with greater standards of social justice.”

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