In a letter to Karen Bradley sent earlier this week, welcoming her recent appointment as Secretary of State, Presbyterian Moderator, Rt. Rev. Dr. Noble McNeely and Rev. Trevor Gribben, Clerk of the General Assembly and General Secretary of the Presbyterian Church in Ireland, had writtten of the ‘deep sense of frustration’ felt by many people at the lack of political movement towards the establishment of an Executive.
The letter also highlighted the impact across the community of not having a functioning Executive, saying “it is our prayer that you and other political representatives will be able to find a way forward.”
In their letter they said:
We are sure you are well aware that your appointment comes at a time when many people across the community feel a deep sense of frustration at the lack of political movement towards the establishment of an effective, functioning Executive.
A year on from its collapse, the impact continues to be felt beyond the corridors of power, in our schools and hospitals, among many charities and community and voluntary organisations, and in the lives of some of the most vulnerable and marginalised people in our society. In light of the events of recent days, we think particularly of the many victims and survivors, and the fact that we still have no agreed way forward on dealing with the legacy of our troubled past.
There is no denying that difficult and challenging times lie ahead in your new role. It is our prayer that you and other political representatives will be able to find a way forward. At the same time, I hope that we all will be able to encourage generosity of spirit, goodwill, respect and empathy for one another; basic human values that have been sorely absent in recent times, and without which co-operation for the common good of all is much harder to build.
As a Church we want to see the establishment of good government as soon as possible and as Christians we are called to pray for those in authority over us. So please be assured of our prayers and the prayers of many throughout the Presbyterian Church in Ireland.
You can read the full text of the letter here.