The values held by the British National Party are not Christian, the former Bishop of Rochester has asserted.
Bishop Michael Nazir-Ali has warned that the BNP’s “narrow, racist vision” is not in line with Christian traditions.
He said: “We must not allow the BNP to hijack the association of ‘Christian’ with ‘Britain’ for its own quite unChristian agenda.”
“The Judeo-Christian tradition that informs so much of our national life is deeply inimical to the BNP’s narrow, racist vision”, he stated.
The former Bishop of Rochester’s comments come in light of BNP leader Nick Griffin’s recent appearance on the BBC’s Question Time.
He said: “Nick Griffin of the BNP used the terms ‘Christian’ and ‘Britain’ three times in his recent appearance on Question Time.
“In none of those references did he give ‘Christian’ or ‘Christianity’ any content whatsoever.”
The Bishop’s comments echo those made earlier this week by Lord Carey, the former Archbishop of Canterbury, who said the BNP must not be allowed to hijack Christianity.
Lord Carey said all Christians must stand “shoulder-to-shoulder in rejection of Nick Griffin’s notion that ‘Christianity’ has anything to do with his despicable views”.
He added: “To hear the phrase ‘Christian Britain’ coming from the mouth of Nick Griffin made me shudder.”
“This squalid racist must not be allowed to hijack one of the world’s great religions.”
He also said: “The views of the BNP are not simply false, they are dangerous, indeed irredeemably evil.”
In May the Archbishops of Canterbury and York jointly urged the public not to vote for the BNP out of dissatisfaction with MP’s expenses.
In a joint statement, Dr Rowan Williams and Dr John Sentamu asked disillusioned voters not to vote in favour of the BNP in the June European elections.
They warned that the party’s views “are the very opposite of the values of justice, compassion and human dignity which are rooted in our Christian heritage”.