Easter message from Archbishop of Birmingham

 In his Easter Message, Archbishop Vincent Nichols is calling on the electorate to ask questions about prospective MP's views on "life issues" in the run-up to the General Election. The Archbishop of Birmingham said voters should not only be sure of what they believed, but make "clearer demands" of elected representatives.This includes knowing a person's position on abortion, the euthanasia debate and stem cell research. Archbishop Nichols said: "Easter is the finest of the Christian feasts because it makes clear the finest and most important of truths. Easter declares that in Jesus, who rose from the dead, each and every human being finds a declaration of the truth about themselves. "Our destiny is not death. We are programmed for life, and for eternal life. Death is no longer the boundary mark beyond which is empty blackness. No, the fullness of life lies beyond the experience of death. "This truth changes everything. Now we see in each other people who carry the seeds of immortality, the dignity of eternity. "No human being is simply a cog in a machine, a means to an end, a possession or a plaything. Human life is sacred. That is our distinguishing feature, the truth that should shape our living. "The vision and hope that arises from this Easter truth is much needed today, even in our public and political life. "Can we bring new energy into our shared affairs? Certainly that will not be done by forming religious political parties, or by religious groups dictating patterns of voting. We don't do that. "But it does mean that we would all do well to think more deeply about what we really believe before voting, and to make clearer demands of our elected representatives. "Then this celebration of Easter and the value it gives to every life would help us to build a better society for all."

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