Simon Barrow's blog

Greenbelt: Big society, big deal, big con?

Greenbelt: Big society, big deal, big con?

Ekklesia is co-sponsoring a discussion of the ins and outs of 'Big Society' claims at the Greenbelt Festival in Cheltenham, at 6.30pm on Friday 26 August 2011.

Not peace, but a (religious) sword?

The seed of violence seems to be in everyone at some level or other. But what does ideology and religion bring to the human propensity towards violent conflict? In what ways does faith help assuage or provoke confrontation?

American Muslim leader coming to Scotland

Imam Faisal Abdul Rauf, the American Muslim leader, author and activist at the centre of the recent storm about plans to build an Islamic community centre near Ground Zero in New York, arrives Scotlan

Making finance ethical and sustainable

Making finance ethical and sustainable

Many economic commentators, and those working in banking and finance, thought that the worst of the global economic recession had gone away. They were wrong. It looks to be back with a vengeance.

Faith in taxation?

Faith in taxation?

In most religious traditions there is a commitment to giving money to the poor, and more radically to various kinds of economic sharing within communities.

Saturday at the Festival

Those who follow sports programmes on television will be aware of the advertising ploy that is 'Super Saturday', when broadcast packages are aggregated to entice the viewer into a whole day of watching. Well, I suppose you could say that Saturday 13 August is the equivalent of that at the Festival of Spirituality and Peace in Edinburgh... except without the gauche publicity!

Peace Festival on 'Sunday'... and Monday

Peace Festival on 'Sunday'... and Monday

The Rev Donald Reid, director of the ambitious Festival of Spirituality & Peace (6-29 August 2011) in Edinburgh this year has been interviewed on BBC Radio 4's flagship 'Sunday' programme tomorrow morning, appearing at 7.15am.

Taking our past into our future

Taking our past into our future

That was the title of a book by the late Bishop Hugh Montefiore, who at various times in his life was seen as 'turbulent priest' and a trouble-maker... but who also, interestingly, ended up being seen as a staunch proponent of traditional Christianity.

Films for a (social) change

The Filmhouse Cinema in Edinburgh is screening three fine movies as part of this year's Festival of Spirituality and Peace, which runs from 6-9 August 2011 - 'Getting Out', 'Bloody Sunday' and 'Pray the Devil Back'.

Memories of John Stott

Though I ended up disagreeing with him fairly significantly on pacifism, the interpretation of the atonement, homosexuality and capital punishment, I remain grateful beyond words for the life, work and example of evangelical Anglican leader John R W Stott, who died aged 90 last week.