Editorial by Anthony Woollard

from Signs of the Times No. 65 - Apr 2017


Many of us were brought up on the historical myth of the Dark Ages.

Around the fifth century of our era, we were taught, Roman civilisation (in the West at least) collapsed under its own weight and the onslaught of ‘barbarians’ from the east and north - weakened also, perhaps, by the doctrines of the ‘pale Galilean’[1] replacing the bracing militarism of empire. Yet it was the followers of that Galilean, especially monks, who kept culture alive in isolated enclosures, and gradually converted and civilised the barbarians, preparing the way for the flowering of the Middle Ages.

by Brenda Watson
from Signs of the Times No. 65 - Apr 2017

The January 2017 issue of Signs of the Times raised the question of the role of Modern Church.

One of its greatest strengths, it seems to me, lies in its rigorous openness to intellectual challenge, and I think this should be shared much more on the two fronts implied in its title: the modern world and the Church. On the one hand, there is a need for a decisive informed religious voice in the modern world, academically and regarding general thinking as a whole. On the other hand, it is important to dialogue more with conservative-minded Christians who, whether inclined to ‘orthodoxy’ or evangelicalism, tend to be over-comfortable with tradition and not sufficiently open to reasoning. I think Modern Church can perform a valuable service for both by exposing a widespread and damaging myth about reason.

by Christine Alker
from Signs of the Times No. 65 - Apr 2017

The second Marcus Borg Memorial Lecture is on Saturday 13th May 2017 in Bristol.

Dr. Robin Meyers is an ordained minister in the United Church of Christ in the USA. He is the Distinguished Professor of Social Justice at Oklahoma City University, a best-selling author, a columnist, and an award-winning commentator for National Public Radio.

by Rosalind Lund
from Signs of the Times No. 65 - Apr 2017

Joan was a familiar figure at Modern Church annual conferences, snapping away with her camera to get photos for publicity material or displays during the year.

In fact I’m sure a number of her pictures have a continuing life on the Modern Church website.

by Humphrey Prideaux, to mark his 80th birthday and 54th anniversary of ordination, at St Mary’s Church, Alverstoke on 31st January 2016, the Feast of the Presentation, at 9.15 am Holy Communion
from Signs of the Times No. 65 - Apr 2017

 ‘Simeon came by the Spirit into the Temple’. Luke 2.27

What if Simeon had not popped into the Temple that morning? A moment that changed his life and his way of seeing. Those two small words: ‘What if’. How many ‘What ifs’ in our 18 or 80 years have changed our life and our way of seeing? If you get bored with my ‘What ifs’, reflect on your own!

December 1992 at Fareham College. I am a widower. I say to my colleague, ‘When you’re on your own on Boxing Day, what will you do?’ She says, ‘I’m going out with the Ramblers.’ ‘May I come?’ I say. Ten months later we marry.