media

RealityBites Nominated for Jerusalem Award

We are delighted to inform you that RealityBites director Mark Roques has been shortlisted for a Jerusalem Award 2015 in the category of Short Form Radio.

The feature was entitled Football and Faith and here follows a bit of background about the radio spot.

The World Cup attracts huge global attention and so last year I teamed up with ReachBeyond's UK radio department Whistling Frog Productions to create a feature about some of the fascinating connections between football and faith.

Secularism, Blockbusters and Soaps (2)

Soap operas (soaps for short) are radio or television drama series following people's daily lives. They were so named because they were first sponsored in the US in the 1930s by soap manufacturers.

In the UK, of course, I mean Coronation Street, EastEnders, Emmerdale, Hollyoaks, Doctors, and the Australian-produced Neighbours and Home and Away. And of course the longest-running one of them all, The Archers (on Radio 4 since 1950). Nowadays people can also readily access soaps from other countries, especially, of course, the USA.

Secularism, Blockbusters and Soaps (1)

We live in an age when the Western world is dominated by secularist worldviews, secularist big stories. The dominant secularist big stories are those of materialism in both senses of that key word: that physical nature is all there is, and that enjoying material possessions is all that matters. However, for this blog post, the precise characteristics of secularist big stories do not matter; it is enough if two points can be accepted.

Football in the Kingdom of God

Mark is away this week, so here's something you may have missed last month.

As anticipation mounted for the World Cup final, a feature about football and faith went out on 6th July on 16 local radio stations around the country: from Yorkshire Coast Radio to Cornwall's Pirate FM. Mark was a central commentator: speaking alongside Christian professional footballers Bruce Dyer and Bobby Hassell, he talked about the drama, joy and wackiness of football as one of the good things we can do in God's creation.

Raised in Leeds

Leeds-based illustrator Si Smith presents 19 'stations of the resurrection' all relocated to present-day Leeds. Full of beautifully observed detail, the pictures reflect the Leeds we know and love (particularly north Leeds, where Si lives, and the city centre) and pose that eternal 'What if…?' question that comes from relocating one of our culture's greatest narratives into a 21st century city.

The pictures will be presented along with other simple artifacts that enhance the story, and a prayer guide will be available for those that wish to see further into the work.

Youthwork Podcast

I really enjoyed talking to Martin Saunders and Jamie Cutteridge on the Youthwork podcast on Wednesday. Both lads are very friendly and have great banter. It was also great to meet Sarah Wynter, the new editor at the mag.

We talked about a lot of topics – youthwork, storytelling, the biblical story, eschatology, prayer, fasting and, of course, football. We even had a brief discussion about my deep love for Hertfordshire and the wonderful people who make it such a great county!

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Green Pastures and the BBC

Green Pastures is a wonderful kingdom structure but it isn't all plain sailing!

The kingdom of God is here but not fully here. Consider some of the obstacles and frustrations. Sometimes the project has to deal with tenants who take liberties on a sustained and exhausting pattern. We're talking tenants who wreck properties and cause mayhem. Sometimes Vicki and Pastor Pete have to embrace tough love and ask people to leave. Some people abuse the project's kindness and Christian generosity. They have to go!

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