LONDON — Church of England bishops appealed to Christians last week to take part in the politics ahead of upcoming elections, calling for a fresh moral vision for Britain at time of disillusionment.

The bishops said in a 52-page letter that it is the duty of every Christian to vote May 7. The letter, the first of its kind before a vote, touches on topics such as the concept of a living wage and Britain’s relationship with the European Union.

The Bishop of Norwich, Rt. Rev. Graham James, said the bishops are aware that voices in British society, notably comedian Russell Brand, have been arguing that voting is pointless.

“While one may think that the bishops of the Church of England don’t quite have the sex appeal of Russell Brand, we think that we should counter it,” James said.

The bishops urged a debate on whether Britain should have a nuclear deterrent and an “honest account of how we must live” in order to prevent future generations from inheriting “a denuded and exhausted planet.”

They also addressed some of the more loaded rhetoric about public policy, including the often degrading way in which welfare recipients are described.