The Salamanca Declaration

Yesterday I signed the The Salamanca Declaration and joined with other Christian leaders in presenting the Declaration to Michael Polley the Speaker of the House who then gave it to Rene Hidding MP to table in the Legislative Assembly. From the Media Release:

A document representing Tasmania’s Christian community will be tabled in parliament as a unified response to the social issues currently dividing public opinion. Every major head of church in Tasmania has come on board to sign The Salamanca Declaration, meaning more than 170,000 people are represented in its signatories (according to latest census data on faith affiliation).

The Salamanca Declaration is an affirmation of classical Christian values and the need to uphold them despite unprecedented attack. Seeking the common good of all Tasmanians, it puts forward three points of agreement summed up in the  words life, liberty and legacy.

A shorter explanation of these 3 key words is given in the Salamanca Declaration. The shorter explanation follows:


All human life is precious and the sanctity of life should be upheld regardless of race, gender, age, religion or stage of development because every human being is endowed by our Creator with equal and inherent dignity.


Every person has the right to worship God individually and in a faith community. The worshipper has this liberty as a God-given freedom. It entails freedom of conscience, and freedom to speak, gather, worship and generally act in accordance with the beliefs of their faith community. Those with religious convictions share the common democratic liberties which guarantee the freedom to publish, express or proclaim their views in order to help shape our democracy.


A family is a God-given privilege which establishes an invaluable legacy for those involved and for the benefit of society generally. It is best embodied in the birth and development of children within a stable, loving home built around the marriage of a mother and father, and supported by the wider community.

The Salamanca Declaration was conceived when five church leaders representing the state’s major denominations met in Salamanca in October 2012 to discuss the social issues eroding our Tasmanian community.

See the whole Declaration,  The Salamanca Declaration  (Believe in Tasmania)

Some media coverage:

Churches band together on social policy (Examiner)

Churches blast reform ‘tsunami‘  (Mercury)

Abortion Bill has churches banding together (Examiner)


Tasmania’s speaker Michael Polley accepted the ‘Salamanca Declaration’ on the steps of Parliament House in Hobart. (ABC News)

See also, Abortion Tas: Anglican Submission  and Euthanasia


The Salamanca Declaration — 3 Comments

  1. In unity God commands a blessing…may it come swiftly, and be accompanied with the power of His love and Holy Spirit to bring justice to the unborn, and release a shift again to righteousness in the land. Bless also the church leaders for this great initiative.

  2. As one of the 170 000 people represented by the signatories, I am disappointed. While I believe the leaders were genuine in attempting to take a unified stand, I question this approach. I think it’s time to take a different strategy. A strategy that builds upon some of the key strengths of the Christian faith such as service [particularly to the poor and disadvantaged] while also humbly acknowledging our failures [and I include myself as part of the church] to live with integrity in our witness to living out Christian values. While my next point is another issue, I believe we leave ourselves open to fair criticism in trying to present a `unified response’ when I know that many Christians hold a more diverse range of views.

  3. Thank you Kevin for your response, I am one of those Christians with a differing view to that of this declaration. Bishop John’s statement that “Every major head of church in Tasmania” has come on board is, from my point of view, happily inaccurate. I am glad the head of the Uniting Church in Tasmania was not one of the signatories to this document.

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