Britain should be proud of Christianity rather than downgrading it, a Government Minister has said.
Baroness Warsi – a Muslim – made the comments in an article for The Daily Telegraph last week.
She said Christians should feel proud of their faith, and not be made to feel that they must leave it at the door.
Her comments coincide with two separate cases of Christians being kicked out of posts because of their beliefs.
Adrian Smith was demoted from his job as a housing manager and had his salary slashed because he said churches should not be forced to register civil partnerships.
Gordon Wilson – a former leader of the Scottish National Party – was voted off the board of Dundee Citizens Advice Bureau for saying marriage should not be redefined in Scotland.
Baroness Warsi said in her article: “We need to create a country in which people can be unashamedly proud of their faith – where they don’t feel that they have to leave religion at the door.
“That means being proud of Christianity, not downgrading it.”
She also said: “For many years, I have been saying that the stronger we are as a Christian nation, the more understanding we will be of other faiths.”
Last year Baroness Warsi, who is co-chairman of the Conservative Party, told Church of England bishops that the coalition Government would “do God” – a reference to Tony Blair’s time as Prime Minister when his spokesman Alastair Campbell told reporters “we don’t do God”.
She said the previous Government had encouraged the “rise of a new kind of intellectual, who dines out on free-flowing media and sustains a vocabulary of secularist intolerance”.
Baroness Warsi also dismissed attempts by “secular fundamentalists” to brand faith communities as “intolerant” groups who are “exclusive” in their welfare provision.