Thinking Faith blogs

One year on: writing from the middle of the story

It's almost a year since my last post for FiSch, on writing my acknowledgements to my recently completed thesis. Since then I've defended and finalised it: anyone who cares to can now download 100,000 words on 'Anchoritic Prayer in Time'! Since this is a pandemic year, of course, some things are still a little in limbo – I haven’t yet graduated, or formally deposited my thesis as a bound copy (which I was quite looking forward to doing!).

A high priest who can sympathise

Three crosses silhouetted against the sunset

We enter Holy Week this year just a few days after the year-anniversary of the UK's first lockdown. What a difference a year makes. It's become a staple of the national conversation in recent weeks to observe the transformation in attitudes, plans and expectations from last March up to now, the way that the ongoing Covid-19 crisis has at different moments served to unify and divide, to trigger outpourings of love and of anger, to inspire creativity and provoke dread or despair.

Church forests: the Gospel in trees?

Today I want to share a fascinating story of Christian celebration of biodiversity.  In the highlands of Ethiopia, circular church buildings are surrounded by patches of the forest that once covered the landscape.  Varying from less than a hectare up to thousands, these forests host a wide diversity of both animals and plants, and include individual trees hundreds of years old.  But as farming has intensified, the church forests have been shrinking and their regeneration is threatened by cattle grazing.

Mr Khan has killed 400 girls

I would like to show you how to compare and contrast the dangerous materialist faith with the Christian faith. It’s an intelligent and engaging way to talk about God’s kingdom. Mention Hobbes if you like.

The following story is in our latest TFN course.

A few years ago the journalist Ross Kemp interviewed a notorious human trafficker in Bengal. This is what Mr Khan said:

Is Science being defrocked?

We posted on the secularization of science last summer, in connection with Herman Dooyeweerd's essay of that title.  Like me, you may have been surprised to learn that for Dooyweerd, the 'secularization of science' reached its culmination around the Renaissance, just as theology began to be marginalised in Western culture.  This might seem to belittle the Christian faith and piety associated with subsequent scientific thinkers, from Copernicus and Galileo to Boyle and Faraday, for example.  Isn't secularization a more modern phenomenon - perha

Confident, Imaginative Disciples are Urgently Required

There is a crisis in the church. Christians are not confident and imaginative when talking about the Christian faith. They might be bold when they talk about recipes, diets, sermons and holidays but they lack confidence when it comes to talking about the kingdom of God with non-Christians. There is a pervasive fear that if you talk about Jesus you will be cut down and ridiculed. Think World War 1. If you put your head above the parapet the machine guns will get you.

No one enjoys being shot at either with real bullets or conversational bullets.

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