The Fellowship of Life
a Christian-based vegetarian group founded in 1973


Letters By Margaret Lawson

Unchristian to kill animals for food?

Sir, - What is it that makes the Christian so reluctant to depart from tradition, especially when the tradition is the slaughter of animals for food?

No one who really thinks can deny that slaughter is cruel - from the transport from field (if they have been fortunate enough to enjoy the freedom of green fields instead of being cooped up in "factory farms"), packed like (dead) sardines in lorries or holds of ships, to the slaughterhouse for the bloody and fearsome deed of throat-cutting. And yet the Christian, when faced with the issue, rushes to take refuge in the Scriptures, saying that there is nothing therein urging them to rise up and have done with cruelty and killing for food.

This is despite the Christian belief that Jesus, having taught right human relationships, died to put an end to the sacrifice of animals for the forgiveness of sins. What more natural than that the further promised teaching of the Holy Spirit would extend Jesus' teaching to include the animal creation, deploring their sacrifice in the name of food, especially when it is just not necessary? Thousands with no special church connection demonstrate this wider compassion daily by refusing to eat the products of the slaughterhouse. So why not the Christian?

Soon Jesus' birthday will be celebrated once more, sadly at the cost of the lives and suffering of millions of creatures. Surely there must be Christians somewhere with enough caring and courage to make a stand for the dumb creation, substituting a tasty nut roast or some other simple nutritious dish for the corpse of an animal or bird, and finding out for themselves the satisfaction of eating without causing suffering or death to any living creature.

Church Times

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