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Margaret Thatcher’s Christian compass

Broadcast on 2CH Sydney, 14 Apr 2013

Baroness Margaret Thatcher, who became Britain’s first woman Prime Minister in 1979, died on Monday aged 87.  She was a remarkable leader who drew deeply on her Christian Methodist roots in expressing her political views.

In a 1988 speech to the Church of Scotland, she said:

We must not profess the Christian faith and go to Church simply because we want social reforms and benefits or a better standard of behaviour; but because we accept the sanctity of life, the responsibility that comes with freedom and the supreme sacrifice of Christ.

She affirmed Christianity as fundamental to Britain’s national heritage, and said the Bible offered “a view of the universe, a proper attitude to work, and principles to shape economic and social life.”

But she was selective in which of those principles she chose to shape her contribution to public life, and will continue to be loved and loathed in equal measure – the inevitable legacy of mixing faith and politics.

I’m Rod Benson for the NSW Council of Churches.

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