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Research papers in the category Religion and Society.
Following consultation with disability organisations, Ekklesia is conducting a survey of people with mental or physical health conditions in order to design a replacement for Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) and the Work Capability Assessment (WCA). We consider the WCA to be too flawed and broken to be satisfactorily fixed. It needs replacing, and the people best able to do this are those who are affected by long term illness.
Following on from his August 2015 paper about the Calais situation, Ekklesia associate Vaughan Jones, URC minister and former CEO of a major NGO working with displaced people, addresses the refugee crisis by looking at the steps needed to bridge short-term and long-term requirements. His focus is on the gap between government response and the deeper causes of forced migration, the role secular and faith agencies can play, and a response rooted in the experience and expertise of refugees themselves.
The nightly news in Britain about the 'migrant crisis' (using language that is both confused and misleading) was sparked by developments and images from Calais. But the economic, political, environmental and conflict / human rights background of forced people movements, displacement and refugees is often absent or suppressed in panic-driven reporting. In this short and pointed paper, Ekklesia associate and board member Vaughan Jones, who has considerable professional experience in the field, offers an alternative perspective and prospectus for a humane, informed and positive approach to these issues.
In June 2015, Ekklesia published Bishop David Atkinson's paper, 'Climate change and the Christian gospel', which partly prefigured Pope Francis' groundbreaking encyclical on environment and poverty. Here Bishop Atkinson responds as both a theologian and a scientist to a recent Global Warming Policy Foundation (GWPF) paper which accuses the encyclical of being "well-meaning but somewhat naïve”.
As part of its contribution to promoting positive approaches to issues of economy, sustainability, peace and community renewal in relation to the 2015 General Election, Ekklesia developed a set of ten values and principles which we used to assess the claims of competing parties and candidates, and promoted as tools of engagement and discussion. The exercise has now been repeated for each of the contenders in the UK Labour leadership election. This paper, by Virginia Moffatt and Simon Barrow, also situates the debate around Labour in a wider political and social context, looking at the need for a fundamental shift in discourse and action for a more just society and for a politics grounded in civic action and participation.
Fear or Freedom?: Why a Warring Church Must Change by Simon Barrow (Ed)
The Subversive Manifesto: Lifting the Lid on God's Political Agenda by Jonathan Bartley
Faith and Politics After Christendom: The Church as a Movement for Anarchy by Jonathan Bartley
Consuming Passion: Why the Killing of Jesus Really Matters by Simon Barrow and Jonathan Bartley (Eds)
Threatened with Resurrection: The Difficult Peace of Christ by Simon Barrow