We don't really 'do God' on Creeting St Peter Parish Council. After all, that's what the Parochial Church Council is for, when they're not organising the village's social life (and sorry for missing today's coffee morning, I had to go to London).
I have to admit though, that if asked to take part in a prayer session as part of Full Council, I'd have to demur. I don't have an objection to religion - I am a guilty, non-practising Roman Catholic, not guilty because I'm non-practising, just existentially guilty - but I do see it as personal and a matter of individual conscience.
It is such a pity that the protagonists are so entirely unsympathetic. The spokesperson for the National Secular Society, Keith Porteous Wood, seems rather too keen to drive faith out of our society, whereas Lord Carey of Clifton gives the impression of being a reactionary Lord Blimp.
The abolition of mandatory prayers as an integral part of a council meeting is not the end of Christianity as we know it. And if my fellow councillors were to choose to have a prayer session before our formal business, I really wouldn't see how I could reasonably protest. It is their deeds as councillors that are my concern, not their deeds elsewhere.
I shouldn't be surprised that Eric Pickles has waded into the row. Given that he no longer appears to check basic facts before mouthing off, I tend to the view that if I'm taking a contrary stance to his, I'm on the right side of common sense.
So, if you want to pray, go right ahead, just don't oblige me to join you. And in return, I won't oblige you to enjoy a bacon sandwich, or be a bureaucrat, or savour a nice glass of riesling. It's all about freedom, isn't it, Eric?...