This relates to

Pope Francis (“the Pope”)

The “LifeChurch” Group of Churches (“the Group”)

Thomas H Appleby of Greater Manchester (“Mr Appleby”)^

Former U S President Donald J Trump (“Mr Trump”)

U S President Joseph R Biden (“Mr Biden”)

^Mr Appleby is the proprietor of this website but we, the operators, have ensured that this does not affect the fairness of the article.

It is easy to obtain evidence that many people who call themselves “Christians” are disregarding the commandment “Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself”, in ways likely to cause serious harm.  For example, with reference to the second article on this website, the Vatican website still contains nothing to cast doubt on Cardinal Trujillo's credibility.  It is implausible that the Pope could be unable to obtain reliable, relevant, scientific advice.  Perhaps he does not want to face facts which can be proved beyond reasonable doubt.

However, in some cases, cronyism is involved.

The existence or otherwise of an omniscient being who supports the above commandment is not a matter for this website but there is overwhelming evidence that the Pope is not guided by one and nor are those who control the Group.

Mr Appleby was one of many local residents who, in June 2020, received a letter from a lady who was evidently a member of “LifeChurch Manchester*”.  It began “This is a worrying time for us all ... The virus and the lockdown means that we've had to change how we spend our days ...” and continued “As a Christian who believes in the power of prayer I am happy to pray for you ...” and “Life Church Manchester ... live streams its church service each Sunday ...”.

With the letter was a booklet entitled “Knowing God Personally”, published by Agape Ministries Ltd, which is connected to organisations active in almost every country.

So what?”, you may ask, “Has this any connection with cronyism?”

Mr Appleby noticed that the Group's websites lacked content on many important ethical issues.  He contacted her and she referred him to the Senior Leader, Mr Andy Barclay-Watt.

Readers will be able to see the Group's websites and consider what they should contain on the basis of the above commandment, in relation to various issues.  Mr Appleby's last communication to him was as follows:


Mr A J Barclay-Watt
Senior Leader
LifeChurch Manchester
235 Washway Road
M33 4BP

1 May 2021*^

Dear Mr Barclay-Watt

I have still received nothing from you further to my e-mails of 20 October and 9 November 2020.

You and your colleagues have persistently failed to take reasonable steps to obey the commandment “Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.”

The LifeChurch Group of Churches has websites which are probably read by hundreds of millions of people in many countries but there are many important subjects on which, for no good reason, you and your colleagues have persistently failed to convey online information and advice, in the public interest.  (Incidentally, “the public” includes non-human sentient creatures.)

I have given you examples of such subjects but, if you believe what you claim to believe, you should not want information or advice from me.  If you are guided by a good, omniscient being, you must know what to do and, if you do not believe that you are, you should resign.

Something else you and your colleagues should do - and should have done years ago - to comply with the commandment is to publish, online, a list of influential people who have created implausible impressions that they are Christians, containing the name “Donald J Trump” in bold type.  Several facts expose his behaviour as farcical.  For example, the Bible clearly implies that Jesus would have advised him to use billions of dollars philanthropically.

Should you wish to respond, please do so by Recorded Delivery.

Yours sincerely

Thomas H Appleby

The Royal Mail website shows that it was delivered on 4 May 2021 and signed for by someone called “Auden”.

Mr Appleby has still received no response and has never received, from Mr Barclay-Watt or anyone else, any communication which has purported to justify the Group's failure to publish anything.

Mr Appleby comments as follows:

The lady referred to above is probably well-intentioned but of poor intellect.  She talks nonsense about physics.  I wonder how she learnt it.

I have told her that she is wasting her time and probably her money but she seems not to have understood simple reasoning.

Those who control the Group are probably highly educated – in law and accountancy.

Behaviour similar to Mr Trump's may not relate only to Christianity.  In other countries, there may be politicians who, to promote their political careers, create impressions that they have other faiths.

The Group is probably no worse than many other “religious” (and secular) bodies controlled by people who, for reasons best known to themselves, evade issues.  A particularly serious example from history is that, in the eighteenth century, the Anglican Church failed to publicly object to the slave trade.  At least 96 senior clergymen (probably in collusion with politicians) profited from it.**

Mr Biden, also, is misleading people (but to a lesser extent than Mr Trump) by portraying himself as a Christian.  The Bible implies that Jesus would have approved of some, but by no means all, of his behaviour.  He seems to love some neighbours more than others.  In particular, it implies that Jesus (although a Jew) would have disapproved of his behaviour in relation to Israel.  As was Mr Trump, Mr Biden is evidently in favour of allowing US companies to sell weapons to the Israeli Government, despite its bad human rights record.  It is racist and this is not surprising.  The Jewish faith embodies a racist doctrine to the effect that Jews are more important than other people.

Mr Biden also portays himself as a Roman Catholic and, during his recent visit to Cornwall, he publicly attended an RC service.  (Many people, including millions who call themselves "Christians", do not classify the Pope as "a Christian" but Mr Biden seems to do so.)  However, he evidently disagrees with the RC doctrine on abortion.  I point this out not to prompt a debate on abortion, but to show that he is not being frank.  A fundamental RC doctrine is that the Pope is infallible.  Mr Biden should not portray himself as a Roman Catholic if he disagrees with the Pope on any issue.  Furthermore, Mr Biden should frankly, publicly, comment on many religious matters not solely related to the RC Church.  For example, he should state that he does, or does not, believe that the Bible is a reliable source of information.  (This matters in relation to various political issues.)  Could an ark as described in the story of Noah have carried a breeding pair of animals of every species?  The story, in effect, alleges that animals were kept in a space far smaller than their total volume and also that Archimedes' Principle was breached.  The animals would have weighed enough, however they had been arranged, to sink many such arks.  (The RC Church (in common with several other religious bodies) maintains that the story was written by a man guided by an omniscient, infallible being.  It could not have been.  The Pope is therefore not infallible.  He is, at best, confused.)

LifeChurch Manchester is a company limited by guarantee and Mr Barclay-Watt has been a director of it since 2005.

Who pays him and his colleagues?  If you are a UK taxpayer, you do partly, because LifeChurch Manchester and other members of the Group receive national tax concessions as registered charities.

If you pay Council Tax or business rates and if there is a “LifeChurch” property in the local authority area, you pay even more, because, under Schedule 5 of the Local Government Finance Act 1988 as amended, any “place of public religious worship” is wholly exempt from business rates.^^

* “LifeChurch Manchester” has two churches in Greater Manchester but none in the City of Manchester.

*^ Had the pandemic not existed, Mr Appleby would have sent the letter in late January.  Although the church was closed, he may have been able to find another address for Mr Barclay-Watt but that would not have solved the problem.   Neither Mr Appleby nor anyone he knew had been vaccinated against Covid, hence he did not wish to visit a post office, even with a mask, or ask anyone else to do so, at that dangerous time.

** In the early 19th Century, under pressure from Lord Wilberforce etc., the Church greatly improved its behaviour in relation to slavery but, even now, it behaves badly in relation to several other issues.

^^ This applies in England and Wales.  Different laws apply in Scotland and Northern Ireland.