We're starting a new series looking at the phenomenon of Covid-19, this strange disease that has spread to virtually every part of the world's population over the last 18 months or so and is attributed with the deaths of more than 3 million people so far. This basically biotic event is having wide-ranging effects on human societies and cultures, and can thus be said to be making history. As such, it raises lots of important questions that we ought to be interested in from a Christian perspective.
Thinking Faith blogs
Mike Wagenman introduces a new series on scholarly disagreement.
How does a Christian scholar navigate scholarly disagreements? Over the years, I’ve endured my fair share of differences of opinion, perspective, and conviction with academic peers. Sometimes they have been friendly and fruitful but more often they have devolved into bitterness, bullying, and even personal attacks. And sometimes the worst offenders have been fellow Christians.
To be honest DIY is not my strength. My dad, Jim, was terrible at DIY and it seems to run in the family. My wife, Anne, was concerned about the lack of shelving for books in the house and I was commissioned to find the right tradesman. Imagine my delight when I found an advert in the local newsagents promoting the work of a local 'handyman' who specialised in shelving assignments. I rang up Ron and the next day he arrived at our home full of the joys of spring. Within ten minutes we had a deal and I knew that Anne would be pleased.
I attended an open-air service this weekend, at our local parish church. Our family has moved house recently and we haven't yet settled into a new church. But this open-air gathering seemed hugely appropriate right now, just after Easter.
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!).
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.
This post is by Dr Timothy Kuiper, a postdoc in Zoology at the University of Oxford who studies elephant conservation in Zimbabwe.
This is my take on Goliath's pagan worldview. I mention rabbit superstitions, Genghis Khan and Wallace and Gromit.
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.
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: