Letter: Doubts of the Tory rank and file

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The Independent Online
Sir: To go ahead or not to go ahead? That is the question to be decided by Parliament rather than the country. Europe's offshore island has soon to make up its mind whether it will or will not draw closer to the Continent, politically as well as economically.

Opinion polls are not running in favour of ratification of Maastricht, but I suspect six months ago the gap would have been a good deal closer. Who knows what it will be in six months' time. With little detailed information about what Maastricht actually means, public opinion is bound to be fickle.

The job of the Prime Minister is unenviable. He will not be able to satisfy everyone, nor even a significant majority, but if he needs some words of advice, what better than the prayer of Sir Francis Drake:

O Lord God, when Thou givest to Thy servants to endeavour any great matter, grant us also to know that it is not the beginning, but the continuing of the same, until it be thoroughly finished, which yieldeth the true glory.

Yours faithfully,


Industrial Chaplain and Diocesan European Officer

Diocese of Birmingham