RELIGION:Christianity alone has not shaped us

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After reading MP John Hayes’ Easter message, may I take issue with his assertion that “Christianity has shaped our island nation and must continue to do so”.

This is not entirely true. Britain has been shaped for the better by many pre-Christian, non-Christian, and post Christain forces. We are a largely non-religious society.

In my view,religion, like politics,is a matter of individual judgement and not something for vote-seeking politicians to assert at every festive opportunity by combining both. However, I am reassured by David Cameron, as confirmed by John Hayes, that Christians, just like millions of others of no faith and other faiths, carry out countless acts of kindness every day. The present day established church in this country is a big business institution that enjoys a very profitable charity status for tax purposes at the expense of the rest of us; so it no surprise to this reader that David Cameron and John Hayes wish to show solidarity with it.

Meanwhile, in a signed open letter, 50 writers, academics and broadcasters have warned that David Cameron’s claim that Britain is a Christian country risks sowing alienation and division in society.

This is not good news for a Tory party that proudly maintains that it believes in a fair and more equal society for all.

David Turp