Some Christians feel so “picked on” they are too scared to speak about their faith in public, a bishop has warned.
The Right Reverend Nick Baines, the Bishop of Leeds, said some secularists “have a problem” with religion being talked about.
And he warned that a brand of “intolerant” liberalism circulates in the UK which is dismissive of the Christian faith.
He made his comments after Theresa May said it is important people can talk freely about their faith following claims some Christians dare not speak about Christmas.
Bishop Baines told the Press Association: “Clearly there are some Christians who are concerned about whether they are free to talk about their faith in a respectful and appropriate way in the workplace.
“Equally, there are plenty of people who are not Christians who think that Christians shouldn’t, or think there is an issue around it. I call it religious illiteracy.
“There are people who have been disciplined or threatened with discipline for talking about their faith even though they have been asked about it. Someone makes a complaint and says they have been inappropriate. This is absurd.”
He added: “There is, amongst some Christians – this isn’t universal – a sense of being a little picked on or beleaguered. I think if you claim to be open-minded and liberal, why are you so frightened of religious expression?”