The Fellowship of Life
On your letters page recently, you featured a photograph of a goat about to be hurled from a Spanish bell tower.
It is one of a wide range of religious ceremonies based on animal torture, performed in Europe with the approval of the church.
In the United Kingdom there are members of Christian clergy who regularly participate in bloodsports such as shooting and hunting with hounds. The sordid veal farm run by the monks of Storrington Priory and the equally callous battery hen factory run by nuns of a convent in Davenport were both closed down following public outrage from apparently all but the religious.
Our failure to recognise the whole scope of the Father's revelation of Himself in a varied, sentient creation allows society to look on unmoved at the ghastly display of mangled limbs and bleeding corpses in butchers' windows. As if the 600m animals murdered every year in Britain for food all die with the consent of their benevolent Creator.
It is a pity that the Church has misrepresented God's infinite love as embracing only humanity.
This will no doubt prompt a torrent of choosy Biblical quotes, but religion is measured by our actions rather than our words and so long as we can live well without inflicting miserable lives on other animals, that is what we should do.
Wales on Sunday, July 17, 1994.
Return to J. M. Gilheany: letters
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