The long religious and secular weekend is over. The Bank Holiday draws to an end and the liturgical celebrations of Easter reached their climax the day before yesterday. As Quakers do not keep these 'times and seasons', I find myself caught in a challenging no-woman's land at Easter and Christmas.
Balal's Good Friday: the liberation of forgiveness
Those of us whose trade is words do well to remember the relative value of a picture and a thousand words. The front page of the Guardian yesterday (17 April 2014) presented an unforgettable instance of the power this adage can carry.
A couple of days ago, I sat in a packed church in a Cambridgeshire village to hear Rowan Williams speak about food banks. The former Archbishop of Canterbury was measured and carefully non-party political in his observations. His address was a model of the power which is exercised when discernment is coupled with commitment to truth and justice.
Imagine... Common Weal on both sides of the border
“Imagine...it's easy if you try”. It's a good lyric but John Lennon was not entirely accurate. What might pejoratively be described as airy-fairy and perhaps slightly wishful supposition is not particularly difficult. More is asked of us by the kind of creative, imaginative thinking which has the power to transform.
Ideology, destitution and hope: a challenge to David Cameron
Twenty-seven Anglican bishops, a Cardinal, an assortment of non-conformists and Quakers may have a ring of Edward Lear, but this coalition represents a growing momentum of faith-based anger and condemnation of the government's 'reform' of social security (http://www.ekklesia.co.uk/node/20200)
Being our brothers' keepers: Benefits Street and Middle England
Much has been written about how determined the government is to set the working poor against the workless poor. But less attention has been paid to the skill with which Conservative politicians are pushing the buttons of Middle England.
The World War I centenary, Lord Kitchener and a Cumbrian shepherd boy
It is an instantly recognised and powerful image which has endured for over a century. The foreshortened pointing finger, extravagant moustaches and braided military cap of Lord Kitchener have been utilised across a wide range of advertising since they were first employed to tell young men that their country needed them.