Theology lecturer co-authors first African and Caribbean Churches Manifesto

Ahead of the 2015 General Election, the National Church Leaders Forum (NCLF) has produced its first manifesto calling for action from all political leaders, and a Roehampton Ministerial Theology lecturer has played a key role in its formation.

Posted: 26 February 2015

image for news story Theology lecturer co-authors first African and Caribbean Churches Manifesto
Dr R. David Muir from the University's Ministerial Theology team, who has played a significant role in creating and launching the manifesto

The manifesto is a radical departure for the Black Church, and is entitled ‘Black Church Political Mobilisation – A Manifesto for Action’ and focuses on a number of key social and political issues.

The 40 page document has been co-authored by Dr R. David Muir, who said: “This manifesto represents a ‘first’ for the Black Church in the UK. This is the first time that African and Caribbean church leaders have produced a document like this to politically mobilise its constituency. For some it demonstrates that the Black Church has ‘come of age’, signalling its willingness and commitment to fully engage in the wider social and political issues of the day.”

All members of the House of Commons and the House of Lords will receive a copy of the manifesto on Monday 2 March, in a bid to raise awareness of the Church’s priorities and opinions in the lead up to the 7 May election.

In nine sections the manifesto deals with topics including church and community, policing and criminal justice, mental health and marriage, youth and education. Each section is divided into three parts, providing what it calls 'the current picture', 'the biblical picture', concluding with 'where do we go from here?' There are some challenging and controversial statements about international aid and foreign policy, as well as on the disproportionate amount of young black men incarcerated.
As a 'manifesto for action' and 'political mobilisation', it recognises the importance of voting and political engagement. It sees no dichotomy between the Christian faith and political engagement. Indeed, it argues that political engagement is 'a part of our civic duty’.

At Roehampton, Dr Muir is part of a growing Ministerial Theology team within the University’s Department of Humanities. He lectures in professional ministerial practice, focussing on Pentecostal history and spirituality, political theology, ministry formation and systematic theology, within Ministerial Theology.

Roehampton is believed to be the largest UK university provider of theological education for students from African and Caribbean majority churches.

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