Labour Party leader Sir Keir Starmer made a grovelling apology for attending a church on Good Friday after leftist activists within his own party accused the church of being “homophobic”.
On Friday, Starmer attended a service at the Jesus House church in London, sharing a video in which he praised the church for its community outreach during the Chinese coronavirus pandemic.
The move was widely criticised by far-left factions within his own party, because of senior pastor Agu Irukwu’s opposition to gay marriage.
The Jeremy Corbyn-linked Labour Party activist group Momentum wrote on social media: “Many churches have been doing fantastic work for their communities during the pandemic. It’s disappointing to see Keir Starmer visit one known for promoting deeply homophobic views,” adding: “Labour needs to apologise to the LGBT+ community. LGBT+ rights are not negotiable.”
The LGBT+ Labour campaign group also criticised Sir Keir for visiting the church, claiming that the church was known for its “broadly anti-LGBT+ views”.
Following the anti-Christian backlash, Starmer wrote on Monday: “I completely disagree with Jesus House’s beliefs on LGBT+ rights, which I was not aware of before my visit. I apologise for the hurt my visit caused and have taken down the video. It was a mistake and I accept that.”
The anger directed towards the Jesus House church seemingly stems from a 2006 letter signed by a group of Christian leaders, including Pastor Irukwu, who criticised the then Labour government of Tony Blair for discriminating against Christians.
The letter said that “the Labour Government is discriminating against Christians in order to appease minority groups.”
“The regulations force Christians in churches, businesses, charities and informal associations to accept and even promote the idea that homosexuality is equal to heterosexuality. For the sake of clarity, this is not what the Bible teaches and it is not what we believe to be the truth. In our view, these regulations are an affront to our freedom to be Christians.”
We're constantly lectured by the left on "structural racism", but when it comes to the views of most BAME people, in Mosques & Churches, suddenly the left are very keen to SILENCE BAME voices.
— Bow Group (@bowgroup) April 3, 2021
Speaking to Breitbart London on Tuesday, Ben Harris-Quinney, the chairman of Britain’s oldest conservative think tank, the Bow Group, said that: “Not only is it ludicrous to suggest that faith-based values constitute homophobia or transphobia, but it is also tone-deaf to the reality of the views of Londoners, or the rest of the country for that matter.”
The Bow Group chairman went on to say that the incident showed that the political establishment on both the right and left in Britain have abandoned communities of faith in London.
“We are told that London is now unwinnable by anyone of conservative views, but it actually has among the highest percentages of people of faith in the country.
“When Kier Starmer recently visited Jesus House to commend them on their charity outreach work during the pandemic he was repudiated by Labour wokesters, and many Conservatives, for homophobia.
“It is indicative that when London Assembly Member David Kurten questioned Sadiq Khan last week over trans ideology, he was condemned by every other party, including the Conservatives for ‘transphobia’.”
Mr Harris-Quinney went on to accuse the “liberals in Conservative Campaign HQ” of failing to meaningfully engage with religious communities –which he said were “once considered the foundation of the Conservative Party” — thereby surrendering control of the capital city to leftist Mayor Sadiq Khan.
Police Show up at London Church on Easter Sunday, After Shutting Down Good Friday Mass https://t.co/yhqCPC3UE5
— Breitbart London (@BreitbartLondon) April 4, 2021
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