On Sunday morning, Justin Welby told his Easter sermon congregation that the UK has a duty as a ‘Christian country’ to not ‘sub-contract our responsibilities’ after anyone who arrived in Britain illegally since January 1 could be relocated to Rwanda under a new deal.
The Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby deemed the plans ungodly, while his counterpart in York also used his Easter sermon to deride the idea as “so depressing and distressing”.
In response, Priti Patel has challenged those against her plan to send migrants to Rwanda to come up with a better idea to tackle small boat crossings in the Channel.
Cabinet minister Jacob Rees-Mogg had suggested that the Archbishop of Canterbury had misunderstood the aims of the policy.
Mr Welby said there are “serious ethical questions about sending asylum seekers overseas”.
He said: “The details are for politics. The principle must stand the judgment of God, and it cannot. It cannot carry the weight of resurrection justice, of life conquering death. It cannot carry the weight of the resurrection that was first to the least valued, for it privileges the rich and strong.”
He was joined in his criticism by the Archbishop of York Stephen Cottrell, who said: “We can do better than this.”
He added: “After all, there is in law no such thing as an illegal asylum seeker. It is the people who exploit them that we need to crack down on, not our sisters and brothers in their need. We don’t need to build more barriers and cower in the darkness of the shadows they create.”
Also the Mail, Express and Telegraph were not happy at all about the intervention by Welby:
Here is the Express and their take on it…
But it was an article in the Telegraph that has been called out in the best way. The title of the article was “Unelected virtue-signallers like Justin Welby are out of step with the public on asylum…”
To which Jolyon Maugham replied: “Isn’t virtue signalling the Archbishop of Canterbury’s job?”
He followed up with: “You have to assume the Telegraph isn’t full of regular church-goers or they’d know that what they describe as “virtue-signalling” most people call “sermons”.”
Then he said: “I think the Telegraph is trying to cancel the Archbishop of Canterbury.”