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Vote for the most worthy candidate

June is the month in which we are invited to cast our votes in the General Election. It may be that by the time you read this you are heartily sick of the election campaign, or election day may have already been and gone. I must admit to feeling rather sad at the way in which such campaigns are often handled, particularly when things get very personal. It sometimes appears that we have lost the ability to disagree in an agreeable way.

I was interested to come across some words from John Wesley (1703-1791), one of the founders of the Methodist Church. Wesley advised those who were about to vote in an election that they should:

Vote for the person they judged most worthy; 
speak no evil of the person they voted against;
take care their spirits were not sharpened against those that voted on the other side.

It seems to me that although that advice is over 240 years old, it is not out of date, and it applies to far more than voting in an election. If only we could learn to respect those who have opinions which differ from our own, and remain friends with those who see things very differently from us.

Steve Clark, Methodist Church

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