The Fellowship of Life
SIR - As a Christian, I can sympathise with farmers caught up in an economic mess (Church urges shoppers to save farmers" - Western Mail 6.10.98). Most industries, after all, are in a process of continual change or irreversible decline.
What I find difficult to take seriously is the traditional Christian view that abattoirs are in any way compatible with a spiritual path. The Church, which usually claims to be motivated by love, has been overtaken by the growth of humane instinct in much of "secular" society. What some call "humane slaughter" - undercover film footage notwithstanding - others would refer to as unnecessary bloodletting. The shameful fruit of religious dogma throughout the centuries.
There may be many reasons why people continue to eat animals; religious duty is certainly not one of them. The Church would be fulfilling a more compassionate role if it led rural communities away from the inevitable demise of violent agriculture.
Return to J. M. Gilheany: Letters (1994 - 2005)
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