Bishop of Burnley promotes 'transparency and honesty' in Easter message

Bishop of Burnley, Rev. Philip North.
Bishop of Burnley, Rev. Philip North.
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After recent tumult that has plagued the country, making 21st Century Britain seem more like "a John le Carre novel", The Bishop of Burnley has spoken of the importance of "light and transparency and honesty" this Easter.

In his Easter message for 2018, Reverend Philip North said that while lent this year had occurred against a "very strange backdrop" of poisonings on English soil and crumbling relations between the UK and Russia, he likened the current climate to that in the Bible which led to Jesus' own death.

"It feels like we’ve time-travelled back to the dark days of the Cold War or even into the pages of a John le Carré novel," The Bishop said. "And all the time there is a real fear that it might escalate out of control, that the human addiction to conflict might impact on our own safety.

"It’s no surprise that it was similar political shenanigans that put Jesus to death," he added. "The last hours of his life were played out against a backdrop of conflict, betrayal and secrecy. It was the same, sinful human world of dark deceit and intrigue that took Jesus to the cross."

Nevertheless, Rev. North reiterated his message of peace and hope, explaining that: "At Easter we rejoice because human sin and darkness had no power to hold Him. And in contrast to the darkness of human sin, this new way is going to be all about light and transparency and honesty.

"The broken community of the disciples is mended," he said. "The past is forgiven. And it’s in the open. No secrecy, no intrigue. All is revealed and laid bare.

"This wonderful resurrection gives us a promise," he added. "Jesus has overcome sin, darkness, and conflict. Those things are put to flight, they cannot last. So, we know now for sure that love and peace has triumphed and that one day they will be revealed in their fullness in the glory of Jesus.

"But the resurrection also gives us a purpose; for those who follow Jesus are called to live that future promise now.

We are called to be role models of the new humanity, showing the world the light of Christ as we make a stand for peace, give voice to the poor, labour for justice and in our own lives act with transparency and honesty."