Tag Archives: easter

Finding the Easter spirit

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I am a Muslim. But since I was a child I have been influenced by many religions. My father, the late Naz Bokhari was a champion of interfaith work in his community, and instilled in us a healthy respect of other religions. When we were young he would even sing school hymns in the car on long journeys and tell us stories from other cultures and faith groups.

Later when we were older, he would encourage respectful engagement with the observances and celebrations of others, believing these to be opportunities for different communities to come together and celebrate the shared values underlying these ancient practices. This is why I was honoured to be involved in organising the first ever iftar (breaking of the fast for Muslims) meal at Lambeth Palace, which was hosted by the Archbishop of Canterbury.

Christian traditions and festivals are part of my childhood and I have particularly fond memories of Easter: taking part in Easter Egg hunts, joining in with the festivities, and of course drastically increasing my chocolate intake! I was also able to relate to those who were fasting for Lent – given my own experiences fasting in the month of Ramadan. These traditions are now being continued wholeheartedly by my children; we enjoy our annual Easter egg hunt, and taking part in festivities with my Christian in-laws.

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Lib Dems mark Passover and Easter

This weekend sees two important religious festivals. On Friday, jewish communities marked Passover, which marks the Israelites’ freedom from slavery and bondage and today Christians celebrate one of the most important days of the year for them, Easter Sunday.

On the Lib Dem website, Lib Dem Peer Monroe Palmer writes about the significance of Passover:

Across the world, Jewish families will sit around the Seder table to share food and recount the tale of how Moses led the Jewish people to their emancipation and deliverance. In retelling the story of the Exodus, we are reminded that the forces of oppression, hate and tyranny are not insurmountable. The traditions we observe are symbolic reminders of both the hardships endured by the Israelites as well as the triumph of faith.

let us all come together to choose unity over division, understanding over intolerance and faith over fear.

Across the world, we are witnessing worrying increases in acts of terror and hate targeted at religious communities. It’s hard to believe that even in 2019 anti-Semitism is still prevalent and growing- even in the UK. However, even in the face of intensifying anti-Semitic sentiment, Jewish communities continue to persevere in challenging bigotry and prejudice. In this growing anti-Semitic climate, festivals such as Passover are timely reminders of the strength of community and power of resistance.

The UK has long been a home for people of all backgrounds, and we are a shining example that different faiths, identities and ethnicities can thrive and co-exist. The history of Jewish people in the UK goes back centuries and British Jewish communities are undoubtedly an integral part of our society. At moments like this, we ought to take the opportunity to recognise the tremendous and invaluable contributions of these communities to our great country.

And Lizzie Jewkes, whose idea to raise the tax threshold was one of the flagship policies during the coalition years, writes about what Easter means to her.

As a Christian, I find a great deal of overlap between my faith and Liberal Democracy. In both, we are encouraged to think of others, to value everyone equally and to work for the greater good of all. Likewise, in both, people are seen as individuals. Jesus came in for a great deal of criticism during his lifetime from those who objected to the way he challenged vested interests, societal norms, privilege and injustice where ever he found them. He treated everyone as equals – women, foreigners, Roman soldiers, the disabled, divorcees, those who collaborated with the occupying forces and children, despite the mores of the age. Following his resurrection, he appeared first to women and told them to tell the men, even though the testimony of women was not considered reliable in Roman society.

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Vince Cable’s Easter Message

Here is Vince Cable’s Easter message:

I would like to send warm wishes to all those celebrating Easter here in the UK and around the world.

For many Christians, Easter is a time of deep reflection and self-examination, and is an important reminder of the values of forgiveness, compassion and kindness. These are principles that resonate with people of all faiths and none.

At the heart of the Easter story is a message of hope and we see this demonstrated through various faith-based projects across the country, whose work helps to protect the most vulnerable in our society. Thank you to the thousands who continue to give their time and energy for the good of their local communities.

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An Easter shoutout to some special people

Easter means many things to people. For Liberal Democrat campaigns staff, it often means long hours working in the run-up to an election. From the hypnotic rhythm of the Risograph to the chatter of activists who need occupying with leaflets, canvass sheets and letters to stuff, there is a Campaign Beast to be fed and it’s the organiser who cooks up the menu.

Now, if you are a candidate or a volunteer, you have some element of choice about if and when you hit the streets at this holiday time of year. If you are a member of staff, you have to be there at both ends of that range of possibilities.

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The shameless Lib Dem Press Office Easter Egg grab

As Theresa May went all Donald Trump on us by playing up to traditional Tory supporters  and focusing on an irrelevant and inaccurate news report about Easter eggs to distract us from the general chaos of her Government, The Liberal Democrat Press Office quietly went about providing commentary on the actual big issues of the day.

Our press team highlighted contradictory remarks by Philip Hammond and Boris Johnson. Boris was doing his best “It’ll be fine if we don’t get a brexit deal” in Germany, while Hammond said that we needed one to protect our economy in India. Tim Farron commented:

This Government is in utter chaos over Brexit. Philip Hammond says one thing in India, then is immediately contradicted by Boris Johnson in Germany.

It seems it’s not just some in the Chancellor’s own party who don’t want a deal on Brexit – it’s some in his own cabinet.

Theresa May should clarify whether she still believes that no deal is better than a bad deal, and if she agrees with her Chancellor of her Foreign Secretary.

The Brexiteers need to drop the bluster and bravado and admit that crashing out of the EU without a deal would be a disaster for our economy.

Tom Brake reminded us of the failings of the Philippines leader as Liam Fox was about to pay a visit:

Duterte is one of the 21st century’s most sinister leaders and Liam Fox has flown halfway around the world to grovel to him.  The fact that the first visit made by Fox since triggering Article 50 is to the Philippines shows just how low this government is willing to stoop in order to secure even a minimal trade deal in the future.

According to UK trade statistics, the value of our exports to the Philippines are just £500 million a year- to put this into context our total international trade is currently over £28 billion a month.

So not only is Fox blind to the horrific human rights abuses and endemic corruption in the Philippines, he’s also clearly oblivious to the actual realities of doing trade with them.

No amount of pandering to corrupt regimes can replace our membership of the Single Market, which is why the Liberal Democrats will continue to fight against the hard, divisive Brexit this government is pursuing.

If, like me, you’ve noticed that things seem to cost more when you do your food shopping, you’d be right. Prices in supermarkets have gone up by 2.3% in the last three months according to research. Susan Kramer said:

Shoppers are feeling the Brexit squeeze, with prices rising while real wages continue to fall.

This is only set to get worse as the Government continues with its reckless plans to damage our economy by pulling Britain out of the Single Market.

It’s not too late to stop a hard Brexit and prevent a long-term squeeze to people’s living standards.

The British people must be given the final say over what comes next. They can choose to keep Britain in the Single Market, and if they want, to remain in the European Union.

This was just a fraction of their output on the serious stuff yesterday.

However, they couldn’t resist a wee foray into Egg-gate. They are human, after all. How many egg analogies can you get into one press release? I was slightly disappointed that they didn’t get hard-boiled in there, given that that’s what we traditionally do with them at Easter, but I did smile.

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Tim Farron’s Easter Message

Here is Tim Farron’s Easter message:

TIm's Easter Message

Wishing you a very happy Easter from my family and everyone at the Liberal Democrats. Here's my Easter message >

Posted by Tim Farron on Sunday, 27 March 2016

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Opinion: Water of Life

Today many Christians are celebrating Easter, the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead. Jesus, whether you view him as historical figure, prophet or messiah, used many images in his teaching. One was water.

John 4:13-14 talks of Jesus’ encounter with the woman of Samaria at the well, and Jesus said to her, “Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again. But anyone who drinks the water I give them will never be thirsty. In fact, the water I give them will become a spring of water in them. It will flow up into eternal life.”

Water is a precious resource. Just this week there was news of California entering the fourth year of drought. Governor Jerry Brown has introduced strict conservation measures to reduce water usage by 25%. California produces a third of the fresh vegetables consumed by Americans, and prices in shops across the country are already reflecting the drought.

Global warming has brought this on. The snowpack in the Sierra Nevada mountains which supplies the water California needs is at a record low. The water California needs for households, crops and industry is not available. Sacrifices will have to be made.

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Labour’s “Easter Clegg” – that’s grown up politics for you

Screen Shot 2014-04-20 at 08.14.13Labour’s Easter weekend headline grab isn’t about their policies. It doesn’t tell you why you should vote for them, why their vision is any good.

Oh no. It’s a highly personal attack on Nick Clegg in the shape of a chocolate Clegg. All very mature.

From the Mirror:

But the packaging warns the Clegg Eggs are “guaranteed to leave a bad taste in your mouth – and like the Deputy PM himself – are “completely hollow”.

The slogan for the campaign on Twitter suggests the eggs, shaped in the image

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Nick Clegg’s Letter from the Leader: “Happy Easter”

Nick Clegg’s latest letter to supporters wishes us all the very best for a relaxing Easter holiday. He’s off on a family break visiting his parents — or “holidaying at a millionaires’ ­playground” if you prefer the Mirror‘s styling. My Co-Editor Caron Lindsay has written a reply highlighting the many and various ways Lib Dem members will be spending the break: campaigning. However you spend it — we at LibDemVoice wish you all the best.

libdem letter from nick clegg

Just a quick note this week to wish you a happy

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Demos: “Religious people are more likely to be politically progressive”

It seems appropriate on Easter Day to report the findings of the report entitled Faithful Citizens by the think tank Demos.

I have been embarrassed and saddened by the portrayal of “the church” as bigoted and homophobic recently, and this research helps to counterbalance that impression. Demos’ report implies that people of faith are more likely to share Liberal Democrat values than to hold the conservative fundamentalist views often described in the media.

13% of citizens claim to belong to a church or other religious organisation, so these findings refer to believers across all the faiths in the UK, although Christians are …

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It’s Easter, so it’s time for Jo Swinson’s annual Eggs-cess packaging report

2010 marks the fourth year of Jo Swinson’s annual Easter Egg excess packaging report. (You can read LDV’s 2009 posting here). This year’s headline conclusion? “Some Easter egg manufacturers have drastically cut their excess packaging, while others are lagging far behind.”

Jo explains her campaign further on her website:

Consumers are tired of excess packaging – they are tired of paying for it and tired of having to dispose of it. Easter eggs are a prime example – in many cases, the huge boxes contain more air than chocolate.

“Last year we saw Easter egg packaging reduced by a third, and companies such as Nestlé, Cadbury, Green and Black’s and Thorntons have made real efforts to cut packaging and improve recyclability. However, Guylian, Lindt and others are still producing grossly excessive packaging.

“The Government is clearly failing to enforce the law, which requires packaging to be reduced to the minimum necessary.”

You can read Jo’s full 2010 report here – here’s the executive summary:

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Swinson slams eggs-ess packaging (geddit?)

As you prepare to devour your innocent-looking Easter eggs this holiday weekend, bear in mind this piece of research by Lib Dem MP Jo Swinson: Easter eggs only take up 40% of their packaging, and remain one of the most wasteful products on supermarket shelves. You can read the BBC news report detailing Jo’s investigations HERE.

Jo comments:

While it is encouraging that the amount of packaging used for Easter eggs has gone down, they remain one of the most excessively packaged and wasteful products available. On average the Easter eggs still take up only 40% of their packaging, so there

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