Christian DUP MP Carla Lockhart has spoken about how she believes God has placed her in politics to be a ‘voice for the voiceless’.
Speaking to Liberal Democrat, Tim Farron on Premier’s A Mucky Business podcast, Lockhart explained how Esther 4:14 challenges her to use her position of influence to be vocal about issues like abortion in “such a time as this”.
“I have been very vocal on this [abortion] issue. I will continue to be a voice for the voiceless. I believe that God has me in Parliament to be that voice,” Lockhart said.
She became a member of parliament for Upper Barn during the 2019 elections having previously been a member of the Northern Ireland Assembly.
Earlier this year, the Upper Barn DUP MP used her maiden speech in Parliament to call on the Government to stop the relaxation of abortion laws in Northern Ireland as well as advocating for suicide prevention and increased investment in mental health services.
Westminster made changes to Northern Ireland's abortion laws in 2019 during a period of absence of devolution. It ordered Stormont’s Department of Health to set up full abortion services by no later than March 2022.
When asked about her thoughts on the nature and tone around the abortion debate, she said: “For me, it's about the value of life. I believe the most basic human right is the right to life and in pregnancy, both lives matter.
“I think we need to rehumanise the baby in the womb and we need to start to ensure that people recognise that it is a person and therefore it needs to be protected.”
For Lockhart, it’s not only important that the legislative framework is “life affirming” but also that Christians recognise their role in providing practical support for those facing crisis pregnancies.
“For us as Christians, we need to step out of our comfort zone, particularly the church, and actually come alongside these people who find themselves in a situation where they feel they can't continue with the pregnancy.”
“It’s about…coming alongside those people who really feel they can't continue with that pregnancy and letting them see that we're there to help and support them. Unfortunately, churches become the last place where people who find themselves in those situations come, and I think that should be a challenge to us all. We need to show some practical Christianity and some real Christian love to those who find themselves in those situations.”
You can listen to the full interview here.