Simon Barrow's blog

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.

Ekklesia Books - news and final sale

Ekklesia Books - news and final sale

For several years, Ekklesia has partnered with Metanoia Books (part of the work of the London Mennonite Centre) to provide a unique online mail order service for a range of titles concerned with justice and peace, Christian reflection and action in a troubled world, and Anabaptist studies.

Turning away from terror

Turning away from terror

While Christianity is full of 'redemption stories' about people whose newly found beliefs have helped turn them away from crime, drugs and violence, the Norwegian terrorist tragedy has turned up a Humanist variant - in connection with the collation of information about alleged gunman Anders Behring Breivik.

Edinburgh's not-quite-hidden festival

Well, it's not exactly hidden - but the annual Festival of Spirituality and Peace (FoSP), which runs from 6-29 August 2011, is maybe not quite as high profile as the International Festival and the accompanying (even larger) Fringe Festival in Edinburgh. Yet.

Books and journals available: Mission Studies, Africa and more

Books and journals available: Mission Studies, Africa and more

Collections of books on anthropology, new religious movements, the history of Christian mission, various regions in Africa and Asia, and related subjects are being offered free of charge (other than any dispersal costs) to interested libraries, institutions or individuals. Historic copies of several missions and African studies journals are also available.

Church investments in the spotlight again

Yesterday I did a 12-minute discussion pre-record for BBC Radio Scotland on the issue of church investments: should Christian churches not be putting their money where their mouth is in terms of ethics? That was the way the question was posed.

The place of religion in public life

The place of religion in public life

This weekend I am speaking alongside others at a conference on 'The Place of Religion in Public Life', bringing together Humanist, Christian and Muslim contributors to a day of discussion about negoti

Making armed force redundant

Edinburgh will be awash with military symbolism and celebration today (25 June 2011), as the city hosts the national event for Armed Forces Day - which David Cameron last year said should be “an explosion of red white and blue all over the country.” That thought may cause SNP First Minister Alex Salmond at least a moment's hiccup as he stands next to the PM on the podium!