Faith and values

Guest Post

I wonder how many of you are like me?  Having to rethink and clarify our own values and religious beliefs in the shifting sands we are living in now?

I was brought up by agnostic parents, although after my father died my mother did dabble in a variety of sects from Quakerism, Anglicanism and probably several I can’t remember, in her desperation to fill the void of loneliness.

I went to a Presbyterian high school, which meant that we had Presbyterian hymns and prayers every morning and periodically went to Church en masse for some reason.  Later on I was baptised and Christened as my staunch Anglican mother in Law would not let me marry her son unless I did.  And he was a mix of Anglican and Russian Orthodox.

Throughout this muddled up bringing I firmly believed in the values and principles of the Christian faith which weaved in and out of the fabric of our daily life, without actually believing in Christ and God.  And that has stayed with me all my adult life.  

I am now getting quite upset at the apparent attack on my values and principles by people who have their own beliefs. We have long believed that people are entitled to their own beliefs as long as they don’t interfere with ours.  And that dictum is hard to shift.  It is part of who we are.  But we may have to challenge all our beliefs and go back to the originals to see if they are still fit for purpose. And if they are, what are we going to do to defend them?

My trigger to these thoughts was the killing of a priest while he was giving Mass.  And then the killers desecrating the altar with their own “sermon” of hate.  That may be my last straw to considering my faith as a belief in values rather than something deeper.

We do not want another “holy war”.  War is hideous.  But it would seem to be happening.  How many people like me are going back to their roots to consider what their values really mean, and how can they protect them?  How many will return to Christianity to protect the values they hold dear?  Now that would be a major societal change!

What about you?


– Frances Denz MNZM

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