The Iron Lady’s Spiritual Side

The Coffin of Former Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher Is Transferred To The Chapel Of Mary Undercroft Ahead Of Her Funeral

The Economist‘s religion blog remembers the faith of Margaret Thatcher:

In religion, as in so much else, Mrs (later Lady) Thatcher was a bundle of paradoxes. She was the last British prime minister openly and emphatically to acknowledge the influence of Christianity on her thinking, in particular terms not fuzzy ones. Her fellow Tories, John Major and David Cameron, have presented themselves as loyal but lukewarm Anglicans. “I don’t pretend to understand all the complex parts of Christian theology,” Mr (later Sir John) Major once said, reassuringly. As for Labour’s leaders, Gordon Brown inherited the ethos but not the zeal of his father, a Presbyterian minister. Tony Blair is passionately religious but was famously discouraged by his advisers from “doing God” in public because of the fear that he might sound nutty.

(Photo: The coffin of former British prime minister Margaret Thatcher rests in the Crypt Chapel of St Mary Undercroft beneath the Houses of Parliament on the eve of her funeral on April 16, 2013 in London, England. Dignitaries from around the world will join Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh as the United Kingdom pays tribute to former Prime Minister Thatcher Baroness Thatcher during a Ceremonial funeral with military honours at St Pauls Cathedral. Lady Thatcher, who died last week, was the first British female Prime Minister and served from 1979 to 1990. By Leon Neal – WPA Pool/Getty Images)