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Archbishop of Canterbury to call for ‘love-in-action’ in Easter sermon

The Archbishop of Canterbury will use his Easter sermon to call for “love-in-action” to help those caught up in conflict, including children in Gaza and Sudan, hostages held by Hamas and people in Ukrainian cities.

Justin Welby will tell Canterbury Cathedral on Sunday that “evil and pain” must be confronted, including that of people smugglers and county lines in schools.

He will tell congregants that the church is not party political and that Christian belief calls for “courageous action” to address wrongs.

“Let us seek action amongst the starving children of Gaza and Sudan – and the parents who try desperately to find food for them, action for the hostages held by Hamas, action for those in the trenches and cities and fears of Ukraine, action in at least 30 but probably closer to 50 other places of armed conflict, action for the 25-30% of children in this country in poverty,” he will say in his Easter address.

He will tell congregants: “We must confront evil and pain.

“Whether it is the evil of people smugglers, or county lines in our schools, or the pain and suffering in a family riven with grief or rage or substance abuse, Jesus, the God-man, who experienced every pain and temptation, is calling us to love-in-action.”

Mr Welby will declare that the church is not party political because its members are “all different” in their politics.

“But we do not pick causes by opinion polls or human pressure, we show love-in-action and word because of who God is, revealed in Jesus,” the archbishop will continue.

“We act because of what God says, found in the bible and to be lived out by the church – in over 30,000 social projects – in 8,000 food banks.

“We proclaim the righteousness of God who acts for the poor and vulnerable, for the rich and comfortable, with love and perfect justice for all, good and bad.”