The think-tanks Ekklesia and the Centre for Welfare Reform have sent and published an open letter to Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, Iain Duncan Smith, from Catholics and people brought up in the Catholic faith who support its teaching on social justice and who are deeply critical of the government’s treatment of vulnerable and disabled people.
Issues surrounding the “disenchantment” of language in modern times are complex, writes Melanie Barbato from Ludwig Maximilians University. Shifts in how language is supposed to be used can tell a lot about power relations. But like other judgements that are called aesthetic, political, religious or rational, they are mingled with the myths we have come to hold true.
2013 is set to be an important year for both the Catholic Church, which elects a new pope, and Croatia, which will become the 28th member of the European Union (EU), writes Alex Sakalis for openDemocracy. These two entities share a long history, with the former wielding significant, yet often ignored, influence on political life in the latter.
Life in the European Union is one of continuing political negotiation. No political realist is surprised that national leaders constantly seek to protect and advance the interests of their country, says social theologian Dr Graeme Smith. The European Union is the place of permanent dialogue between different interests, and more substantially different political cultures, interestingly mirroring some different Protestant and Catholic instincts. Meanwhile, ecumenical lessons can help us to see why it's negotiation all the way, in a positive sense.