Britain’s most senior Catholic cleric has called on Christians to wear a cross every day as “a symbol of their beliefs” and to combat the marginalisation of religion in modern society.
The plea by Cardinal Keith O’Brien, head of the Catholic church inScotland, to be made in his Easter sermon, comes as the Anglican archbishop of Canterbury, Dr Rowan Williams, appealed for more people to attend church this Sunday – even if they are “a bit vague” about religion.
Williams, who is marking his final Easter as leader of the Church of England, said he does not “lose sleep” over the fact many people only attend church at Easter and Christmas.
Speaking to BBC Radio 4, he said that he welcomed those with little connection to Christianity who just wanted to “let the story wash over them” knowing that they would not face a “doctrine examination”.
But O’Brien will call on Christians to make the cross “more prominent in their lives”. Due to speak at Edinburgh’s St Mary’s Cathedral on Sunday, he will tell them to “wear proudly a symbol of the cross of Christ on their garments each and every day of their lives”.
He will say: “I know that many of you do wear such a cross of Christ, not in any ostentatious way, not in a way that might harm you at your work or recreation, but a simple indication that you value the role of Jesus Christ in the history of the world, that you are trying to live by Christ’s standards in your own daily life.”