Rudd says Church must influence politics
Opposition spokesman for Foreign Affairs, Kevin Rudd, has told a Christians in Media conference that "Jesus cannot be confined to his private life", and that Christians must be allowed to influence the formation of public policy.
Anglican Media Sydney reports that, addressing the Access All Areas conference organised by industry group Christians in the Media, Mr Rudd said recent attempts to limit believers to a narrowly defined set of moral issues and family values fail to comprehend the heart of his faith.
"People have been wrestling over the role of Christianity in politics for the better part of two millennia and the dilemma is no better defined than when it began," Mr Rudd said. "When it comes to questions of policy, there rarely is an absolute, authoritative, universal Christian response. But there are a set of values informed by Christianity that should shape your response to the debate."
Church leaders have faced scathing criticism for challenging the planned introduction of industrial relations reform by the Howard government.
Treasurer Peter Costello has openly questioned the credentials of theologians for commenting on what he indicates are economic issues.
But Mr Rudd said Christians who are involved in a secular democracy have a responsibility to inject their views into this sort of policy debate.
"We do not see human beings as simply another commodity that can be traded on a market," he said. "They have a dignity as the work of the Creator. Human beings require protection."
The Opposition Foreign Affairs spokesman said it is increasingly difficult to present a Christian world view to the media because of the way the secular mindset seeks to pigeon-hole believers.
"In politics we feel uncomfortable about talking about these things because of the enormous capacity to be misunderstood," Mr Rudd says.
Jesus must go public MP tells media (Anglican Media 29/8/05)
LINKS (not necessarily endorsed by Church Resources)
Access All Areas - Christians in the Media 2005 National Conference
Christians in the Media
Christians in the media concerned about exclusion (ABC Radio PM 26/8/05)
29 Aug 2005