'Hang on a minute!', churches tell PM and deputy PM

By staff writers
September 7, 2010

Three major Free Churches have launched a video campaign asking people what they would say if they had just one minute to speak with the Prime Minister David Cameron and the Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg.

The initiative has been launched by the Methodist Church, the Baptist Union of Great Britain and the United Reformed Church

The 'My Minute' campaign aims to give people a voice in politics and encourage engagement in public issues, say the three non-conformist Christian denominations.

Participants can communicate their message to camera however they choose – speaking, rapping, singing, praying, miming, dancing or holding up pictures or signs.

The churches are asking people to email the link to their video as soon as they have uploaded it to a video sharing site, such as YouTube or Vimeo. Videos will then be featured on the 'My Minute' website.

The Rev Dr Martyn Atkins, General Secretary of the Methodist Church, commented: “Politics isn’t just for the politicians; it shouldn’t become a closed realm accessible only to the few. Like the Church, politics should be open to everyone. 'My Minute' is about enabling people’s voices to be heard.”

Human rights activist Peter Tatchell and the award-winning broadcaster and Christian environmental campaigner, Mark Dowd, are among those who have already filmed their 'My Minute' videos.

“2010 so far is the hottest year on record in terms of planetary temperatures,” declared Dowd, Director of Education and Communications at Operation Noah. “This is not a time to make cuts.”

The Rev Dr Kirsty Thorpe, Moderator of the General Assembly of the United Reformed Church, added: “My Minute is a great way for those of us in the Churches to show we're in touch with the major issues facing people in today's world. Jesus always helped powerless people to discover their voice - let's follow his example and speak out - especially on behalf of people whose needs may not otherwise be noticed by our political leaders.”

People are being encouraged to tell others about their 'My Minute' video via Facebook, Twitter, blogging, and other social networking sites. People can also check out the latest videos by following @myminute2010 on Twitter or using the #myminute hashtag.

The three denominations say they will be contacting Number 10 Downing Street to let the Prime Minister and his Deputy know what people want to say to them.

The Rev Jonathan Edwards, General Secretary of the Baptist Union of Great Britain, said the exercise was all about participation, rather than sitting on the sidelines.

“Our hope is that the passionate convictions of many will find expression through this campaign, and that key messages and concerns will find a response within Government,” he said.

The campaign has not just been aimed at Christians. It is open to people of all faiths and none.

The 'My Minute' website can be visited at: http://www.jointpublicissues.org.uk/myminute/


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