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Kate Forbes and Nicola Sturgeon_header2.jpg
Kate Forbes and Nicola Sturgeon
Kate Forbes and Nicola Sturgeon thumb.jpg
Kate Forbes and Nicola Sturgeon
UK News

Scottish politician says she's 'guilty' of 'tiptoeing around' her Christian faith

by Chantalle Edmunds

Scotland's finance secretary Kate Forbes has described herself "as guilty as anybody of tiptoeing around" her Christian faith.

Speaking to the BBC's Political Thinking podcast, Ms Forbes, an SNP MP, said although she had never tried to hide her faith, she spoke of a "fear and a sense that the public will think we only speak for our own rather than speak for everybody."

Ms Forbes, 31, is a member of the Free Church of Scotland. The church is opposed to gay marriage and generally anti-abortion.

"To be straight, I believe in the person of Jesus Christ," she told the BBC's Nick Robinson. "I believe that he died for me, he saved me and that my calling is to serve and to love him and to serve and love my neighbours with all my heart and soul and mind and strength.

"So that for me is essential to my being. Politics will pass - I am a person before I was a politician and that person will continue to believe that I am made in the image of God."

She said she had a responsibility to represent all of her constituents despite any difference in their beliefs and added that politicians should be able to represent everyone regardless of whether they have "walked in their shoes or completely understand where they are coming from."

"...neither do I want to deceive my constituents and I think being straight with them about my faith, about who I am, about my background is really important," she added.

Ms Forbes also added that she believed that people had "lost the ability to debate issues" without hating those who have opposing views. She spoke about her Twitter timeline and the levels of vitriol and abuse she had encountered.

Kate Forbes was born in Scotland and spent some of her childhood in India after her parents travelled there as missionaries. She read history at Selwyn College, Cambridge and is tipped by some as a potential successor to First Minister Nicola Sturgeon.

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