Churches in the UK provides half the toddler and parent groups, biggest network of debt counsellors and will feed 100,000 hungry people this year.

It's easy to forget the centuries of oppression, suppression and persecution that religion has inflicted now that they adopt a nicey-nicey façade. This is what happens when religion is relatively weak in society, don't forget what happens when religion is holding the cards.

In the UK we're lucky enough that we're in a position where religious leaders are relatively sedate since the church doesn't have anywhere near the influence it once did. Religion isn't going anywhere anytime quickly but let's not pretend it's a net force for good. After all, I hear Hamas has great domestic social policies but that doesn't come near to atoning for their extremist activities.

I'm glad the churches are able to contribute positively, don't get me wrong. Just don't confuse those acts with a net benevolence.

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