British Nurse Suspended for Offering Prayer

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A British nurse has been suspended and could lose her job for offering to pray for one of her patients.

Caroline Petrie, a home-care nurse of 25 years from Somerset, England says she didn't actually pray because the patient refused the offer.

Her employer then suspended her without pay, saying she failed to demonstrate "personal and professional commitment to equality and diversity."

Mike Judge of The Christian Institute in New Castle, England, talked to CBN News about the case and its impact on Christians in Britain.  Click play to watch the interview.

 Click here to watch Petrie's comments on the incident to the BBC.

Petrie has been a Christian for 35 years and said she considers each patient as a person having more than just physical needs.

"I saw my patients suffering and as I believe in the power of prayer, I began asking them if they wanted me to pray for them," Petrie said.

A spokesman for North Somerset Primary Care Trust said they would investigate the matter.

"We are always keen to be respectful of our patients' views and sensitivity as well as those of our staff," he said.

Petrie said she was shocked by her job suspension.

"First of all, I hadn't upset the patient. And also, I didn't feel there was harm in asking a question. It's not forcing my Christian faith on my patients," Petrie told the BBC.

She has sought legal advice from the Christian Legal Centre.

Andrea Williams, the founder and director of the Christian Legal Centre, said Petrie's case is a major concern.

'It is of huge concern that Christian citizens, whose desire is to do their jobs well, are increasingly being silenced and pushed out of the 'public square' because of Equality and Diversity Policies," she said. "It is extraordinary, that these policies which purport to ensure tolerance are ushering in a new form of censorship and intolerance which should concern us all."

The Christian Legal Centre has backed various legal claims of religious discrimination.

The outcome of the investigation will be made known next week.

Source: BBC News, Christian Legal Centre

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