The Savi Hensman Column

Savi Hensman reflects on religion, society and politics

  • 11 Oct 2011

    The Health and Social Care Bill passing through UK’s Parliament is prompting heated debate, says Savi Hensman. The government claims that this and other reforms to the National Health Service (NHS) will improve patient care. Campaigners fear that they reflect further steps towards privatisation and a fragmented system, which they believe will be harmful to those in most need.

  • 3 Oct 2011

    As some Nigerian politicians try again to push through legislation to further criminalise LGBT people and their friends, it is all the more important for those not caught up in a surge of mass hostility, including overseas well-wishers, to try to ensure that human rights are protected, and the dignity of all respected, says Savi Hensman.

  • 13 Sep 2011

    Especially in areas where affordable housing is scarce, many of us – even if not about to be displaced ourselves – have friends or relatives who are about to lose their homes, with all that this involves, says Savi Hensman, explaining why the government’s programme of draconian cuts to housing benefit are so harmful.

  • 5 Sep 2011

    Even if the government is able to push its Health Bill through Parliament in its present form, there may be a heavy political price to pay later, says Savi Hensman. A different way forward is needed for the NHS.

  • 19 Aug 2011

    There have been many thoughtful attempts to understand recent riots in England, says Savi Hensman. But unfortunately thinktank head and theologian Philip Blond’s parallel universe is not among them.

  • 6 Aug 2011

    Some have read the President of Ireland's recent comments on the Vatican and the abuse scandal as an attack on the Roman Catholic Church. But in reality, says Savi Hensman, it reflects divisions within the church, bringing not only judgement but also the hope of renewal. It can also challenge Christians of all traditions to think more deeply about the responsibilities of the laity.

  • 18 Jul 2011

    An ill-judged intervention from the Equality and Human Rights Commission on a cluster of issues around equality law and religion is likely to intensify confusion, damage the EHRC’s credibility and do more harm than good to Christianity, says Savi Hensman.

  • 4 Jul 2011

    The Church of England is to review its policies on sexuality. As in many other churches, there has been heated debate and deep hurt around this issue in the past. Savi Hensman asks how this controversial subject can be tackled in a way that promotes greater understanding of one another and of God’s purposes.

  • 15 Jun 2011

    The Channel 4 footage Sri Lanka war crimes footage showed graphically what happens when ordinary people are regarded as mere pawns who can be sacrificed in a contest between rival commanders, says Savi Hensman, reviewing the evidence. But all human life is precious and such degrading practices must be outlawed

  • 8 Jun 2011

    Helping others with their burdens is not a matter of prescriptive advice based on dogma or prejudice, or trying to take charge of others’ lives, says Savi Hensman, drawing deeply on Christian scriptural wisdom. Instead it involves being willing to listen, learn and engage.

  • 26 May 2011

    If Church of England leaders continue to discriminate against even those lesbians and gays who have made considerable sacrifices out of respect for church discipline, there will be considerable damage to its credibility as a force for love and justice in the world, says Savi Hensman.

  • 10 May 2011

    Sharing ideas at a local, regional and national level, and discussing how to respond to the threat of cuts, will not always be easy, says Savi Hensman. But it is vital if those who are poorest and most vulnerable are to be protected and a government-led agenda based on false premises appropriately resisted.

  • 24 Apr 2011

    Through the Gospel of resurrection, says Savi Hensman, God is not just a remote ruler, but intimately present, able to empower the despairing and defeated so that they can play their part in transforming the world.

  • 14 Apr 2011

    In a reflection which is both global and deeply personal in its implications, Savi Hensman looks, in the light of recent painful personal experience, at the age-old question of God and suffering.

  • 28 Mar 2011

    A UK government review of local authority duties has raised further fears about the future of social services, says Savi Hensman/ Yet, against a background of harsh spending cuts, this is also an opportunity for people and civil society organisations - including churches and faith bodies - to declare whether they believe that children and adults should be able to get the support they need.