This card is wrong on so many levels:
Who thought it a good idea to hi-jack a Christian Festival simply to promote a political message? I know it happens, however, this is just shameless.
The irony is that if the Holy Family had fled to England under Herod’s persecution today, then this is the agency that would have locked them up until they could be fast tracked back across our borders. David Keen has written more about this on his blog.
It speaks volumes about the state of the asylum and immigration debate in our country. Our politicians are involved in a pissing contest to show the public who can be tougher and harder on this issue. I am sick of hearing Phil Woolas, Minister of State for Borders and Immigration, bragging about how tough he is and the other party spokespeople trying to out do him. The truth is that the weakest and most vulnerable seem to be removed from our shores with a complete lack of compassion and in a deliberately callous manner. People like Elizabeth Rushamba and her two children Hilary-Marie and John.
Recently the Yarl’s Wood Immigration Removal Centre refused to allow St Nicholas to deliver Christmas presents to the estimated 35 children held in the centre; presents that had been donated by London churches. What a great way to celebrate Christmas and how reassuring that our government and its agencies seem so determined to re-enact Dickens’s Christmas Carol (well, the first part anyway). Read more here.
How much did this card cost to produce and distribute? I hope someone will be able to find out because this misuse of tax payers' money is a scandal. In a week when the government offered its pre-budget report setting out its spending priorities, I trust this sort of rubbish will be axed; sadly its more likely that the budget for asylum seekers will be cut.
At least the card says Season’s Greetings rather than Happy or Merry Christmas, because there is nothing joyful or Christian about this obnoxious piece of nonsense.
Update: I have posted a follow up blog here.
There is a video of St Nicholas trying to deliver his presents to Yarl's Wood on the Church Times blog here.