We at Modern Church sometimes get asked what our line is on a particular religious topic. Recently we have been asked about the Trinity.

We usually avoid having a line on specific religious doctrines. The whole point of liberal theology (at least, our version of it) is that we encourage people to think for themselves, and not accept a religious doctrine just because someone in authority tells us to.

The worst politics and the greatest abuses of power invite the best satire.

The best satire endures and ultimately finds its place alongside other classics of the English language, or of another language – French comes to mind. It is also honoured among the visual or theatre arts. The best satire is always metaphor or parable.

Robin Gill’s article in last Friday’s Church Times summarises the ethical debate about genetic editing. This post looks at the presuppositions behind the different positions.

Genetic editing is a new technique for altering DNA sequences in plants, animals and humans.

In my last post, I asked what remedy Christians might offer for the social and psychological brokenness that has given rise to the Trump phenomenon.

I observed that within the liberal tradition there has been a history of transformative social interventions, contrasting with the more traditional emphasis on individual conversion. And I suggested that, if ‘civilisation’ is failing, we might need to revisit that dichotomy.

This is about shame and reconciliation. It is an edited version of a sermon I gave last Sunday. It draws on two stories: the biblical story of Zacchaeus (Luke 19:1-10), and a modern comparison with a conversation I had with a sex worker.

All societies praise some people and despise others in a system of honour and shame. Modern societies don’t emphasise it as much as earlier societies did, but we still have systems of honour and shame.