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

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Literature
Short Extracts

The Church's Supreme Disgrace by Vera Yorke
(New Horizon, 1980, pp132-133)

"It was early in the 1960's that I visited the then Archbishop of York, Dr. Donald Coggan, to implore the help of the Church. He received me with kindness and courtesy but obviously was not in the least interested. He did, however, instantly acknowledge that if we have souls the other animals have them too.

This official assumption of fundamental principle would be important if only it were preached from the pulpit or on television, but nothing has been done. Since then I have been steadily working and writing for this tragically overdue recognition of the true status of animals - creatures with similar feelings to our own and not as the terrible old medieval dictum, "put into the world for our use".

They have the same right to life as ourselves. I regularly implored the last Archbishop of Canterbury, Lord Ramsey, to condemn the hunting of deer, otters and coursing and this was twice debated with the recognition for which I asked, but as none of these things received the smallest publicity they might just as well not have happened. It may be wondered what this "recognition" could lead to; one could argue that it would achieve at least some good and at best an immeasurable amount. The effect of the Church's "recognition" of animal rights could be incalculable; it would definitely help on our whole treatment of animals and one could only hope for a charter for their welfare. Regular prayers on radio and via other media would stimulate public concern and gradually a new attitude would develop which could spread throughout the whole world." 

 

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