It would be quite misleading to describe the 2015 Summer Budget as a “one nation budget” or as favouring “working families” and “giving the nation a pay rise” in any meaningful sense, says Simon Barrow. On the contrary it hits low income households and disabled people, and will increase further Britain’s alarming levels of inequality.
We have suddenly become a world that talks about inequality. That's certainly better than not talking about it. But waxing lyrical about a concern and doing something about it are not the same thing, says Simon Barrow, pointing to the deeper issues calling for action.
Academics and church leaders are among those mourning the loss of Edward Farley, a scholar and writer of "constructive theology", who died at the end of last year (2014) at the age of 85. Simon Barrow looks at his legacy and significance for practical and applied theology.
Has the usual seasonal avalanche of "they're trying to ban Christmas!" stories abated somewhat, at least in Britain? Simon Barrow looks at the evidence and asks what it says to us about the church and Christianity in an emerging post-Chrstendom era.
In his 2014 book 'The Great and Holy War: How World War I changed religion forever' author and academic Philip Jenkins paints a picture of faith, and especially Christian faith, mired in blood. Is there a way out after Christendom?
Can Nicola Sturgeon, as new leader of the SNP and Scotland's First Minister, inject some fresh energy and spirit into politics at Holyrood, and honour the desire for transformational change that came out of the referendum? Simon Barrow looks at her outlook and style as she steps further into the limelight.
Roughly 420,000 English-born people will have a vote in Scotland’s independence referendum later this year, because they live and work here. Ekklesia co-director Simon Barrow. Here he gives a personal account of his shift towards supporting a "Yes" vote – but on the firm basis of solidarity, not separation.
Seven years ago this week, Ekklesia first published a report entitled 'When the Saints Go Marching Out: Redefining St George for a new era'. Simon Barrow shows how an old story re-told can also help us re-understand the rightful impact of the Gospel in the contemporary era, beyond imperial religion and politics.
The Rev Jim Cotter died early in Holy Week. Jim was known to many thousands of people through his books, articles, personal struggles, ministry, public speaking and spiritual direction over the years. Ekklesia co-director Simon Barrow remembers him with gratitude, highlighting the connection between his life and that of one of his spiritual and wordsmithing mentors, the great Welsh poet R. S. Thomas.
The contested details of the latest proposals from the UK Chancellor are only partly illustrative of the momentous economic challenge that lies behind and beyond the Budget, says Simon Barrow. Right now the entire system based at Westminster is failing adequately to comprehend and address, let alone tackle, the really big issues in which economics is a major factor.