Why one Christian doctor’s attempts to highlight failures cost him his job

By Gillan Scott, God and Politics in the UK

Towards the end of September we had another ‘persecuted Christian’ story make the news. It related to the case of Dr David Drew who was dismissed from his role as a consultant paediatrician at Walsall Manor Hospital in December 2010. Prior to this he had sent an email designed to motivate his department which had included a 16th-century prayer by St Ignatius Loyola. He had prefaced the prayer, called ‘To give and not to count the cost’, with the words: ‘I find this a personal inspiration in my frail imperfect efforts to serve my patients, their families and our department.’

Following a complaint from managers not directly involved with the communication, he was reprimanded for using Christian references in some of his professional communications and told he was no longer permitted to continue with this practice. Dr Drew refused to accept this restriction and as a result after further reviews was removed from his post for “gross misconduct and insubordination”.
Since then his case has been to Employment Tribunal and last month an Employment Appeal Tribunal upheld the original decision concluding that he had not been unfairly dismissed.
So there we go. A Christian doctor annoys colleagues by being too pushy with his faith. He is asked to stop talking about God in his communications. He refuses and consequently is sacked. According to some reports that is pretty much it. It’s a lesson to those Christians who try to evangelise their colleagues in a vexatious and insensitive way.
Well actually it most definitely isn’t.
Dr Drew’s long and complex story starts well before the St’ Ignatius prayer incident. Dr Drew, a respected paediatrician with a 37-year unblemished career had repeatedly raised the alarm about the dangers of a broken heating system, staffing cuts and bullying managers on child safety.
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