These were to be the 'legacy olympics'. Regeneration of run down areas, the enthusing of young people with the ideals of sport and healthy activity, the showcasing of the UK (or at least its south-eastern segment), new stadia and facilities - all these have been presented as the quid pro quo for massive expenditure and the likelihood of a gridlocked capital city.
Security does not land in a helicopter; it grows from the ground up - that's what Iraqis told a professor of peace-building at Eastern Mennonite University in the USA. Different experiences and perceptions of what it is to be secure or seek security were among the insights shared by contributors to a forum at the International Ecumenical Peace Convocation in Kingston, Jamaica, in May 2011.
The year has not begun well for Afghanistan, with suicide bombings, fears of a deteriorating security situation and reports of an increased presence by Taliban forces throughout the country, say church-based relief agencies.
Clergy who usually wear dog collars in public are being advised by a safety group to take them off when they are on their own, to reduce the risk of being attacked. But others believe security consciousness should not undermine the character of Christian service.