'Keeping the Faith' report highlights partnerships between faith groups and local authorities

19 March 2021

A new report published by the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Faith and Society charts the huge increase in cooperation between local authorities and faith groups during the pandemic, overcoming previous suspicion, so much so that many of the local authorities report a willingness to keep this partnership going beyond the lockdown.

The Revd Keith James recommends taking a read: “It is real good news story! The research backs up what we have seen in many places in this diocese – which is the way that churches are responding to the challenge of the pandemic, that is both remarkable and profoundly normal – serving our neighbour is what we do, whatever the season.”

Stephen Timms MP, writes in his introduction: “Public policy has often implicitly assumed that religious faith is on the way out. That view has been harder to maintain over the last decade or so, but religious faith has still often been seen as irrelevant, or possibly harmful, to community wellbeing. This fascinating report underlines that, in Britain in 2020, faith groups have vital resources which are crucial for community wellbeing, and which cannot be found anywhere else. We need our institutions to be able to work respectfully with people whose starting point is religious faith and to tap into the moral perspectives, and the experience of running practical initiatives, which faith communities offer. All of us in Parliament need to take heed, and to work out the implications for public policy.”

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