UK: Christian health workers prays for Muslim friend: gets suspended for harassment and bullying

Victoria Wasteney was suspended by the NHS Photo: Warren Allott / The Telegraph

It was intended, she says, as a simple but heartfelt gesture of comfort and support for a troubled colleague.
Victoria Wasteney put her hand on her friend’s knee and, asking if she could pray for her, said simply: “God, I trust You will bring peace and You will bring healing.”

So when Miss Wasteney was later suspended by the NHS from her position as a senior occupational health therapist for having prayed with her colleague, she was left distraught and angry.

The problem appeared to be that Miss Wasteney is a Christian and her colleague was Muslim. And her employer – a health authority in one of Britain’s most ethnically mixed areas – deemed her behaviour to be a case of harassment and bullying.

Miss Wasteney, 37, from Buckhurst Hill, Essex, had earlier lent the colleague – who was going through health problems and personal issues at home – a book about a Muslim woman who converts to Christianity, and also invited her to a number of events organised by her church, including a community sports day and an anti-human trafficking meeting…

…Miss Wasteney said: “I’m not a hard-line evangelical. I’m not anti-Muslim. I believe in freedom of speech, but I’ve always believed we should be sensitive to one another’s beliefs and feelings.”

Indeed, as part of her job at the John Howard Centre, a secure mental hospital in Homerton, east London, Miss Wasteney was concerned with patients’ spiritual well being and helped organise a number of faith activities, including Eid, Diwali and Christmas, as well as ethnic minority events such as Black History Month. There were also regular Friday prayers organised for Muslim patients and staff…

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  • Drunk_by_Noon

    So the Muslims finally admit that they DON’T worship the same God as Christians and Jews!

  • roccolore

    But the same hospital would let Muslims have their prayers untouched.

  • Dana Garcia

    A Satanic mass would be more appropriate. Where’s Anton LaVey when you need him?

    • Frau Katze

      It’s extremely strange.

  • You know those Muslim ask-an-imam advice columns you can find here and there online? I once saw one where the question was, can a Muslim wish “get well soon” to a sick non-Muslim acquaintance. The answer was no. Instead, the Muslim should urge the acquaintance to accept Islam.

  • disqus_PwGxBXHn8l

    In the context, harassment and bullying just means standing up for something rational. It is rational to believe that if there is a God, he might hear us.

    Progressives don’t so much favour Islam as they favour coercion and bullying. I have heard stories like this before from Britain. – Denyse from Ottawa

    • Frau Katze

      She’s going to fight it.

      • disqus_PwGxBXHn8l

        It’s not true that Muslims don’t pray for healing for non-Muslims, if anyone wonders. A Muslim prayed for my Christian-tradition mother’s recovery from a near-fatal heart attack at 85 (a recovery which occurred, by the way and she is well at 90 today). So many Muslims have not yet got the hate-the-dog-pig-infidel-whatever message. Thanks, God! Keep them far from it, for their own well-being.

  • cmh

    the muslim complained

  • Clausewitz

    So then it’s time to pray in a manner they will understand, “Die you bastard”.