THIS WAS the title of the Modern Church South West group day conference in Bath last month, led by Stephen Parsons, author of survivingchurch.org.
The seeds for this day conference were sown at the Modern Church annual conference in July 2017 when Stephen told some of us about his research on the subject.
It's one of those times when words can be not just unhelpful, but positively misleading.
If you're 'ex-vangelical', as so many people in my current parish are, it can be a real issue. Before you've even got to the end of the word, a negative emotional reaction has been evoked by the 'evangel' prefix.
Today is the day the state pension age for women rises to 65, the same as for men. From now on the Government intends to raise the age for both men and women together: to 66 in 2020, 67 in 2026 and 68 in 2039. The Cridland Report so decrees.
Why? Why do we have to work longer and longer before we retire? I am a baby boomer, brought up to believe my generation had the best living conditions ever. Things were going to carry on getting better without limit. New technology was going to mean we could spend less and less time at work. Why is everything is being put into reverse?
This is the third of three posts about the ancient Hebrew prophet Micah, based on sermons I preached at St Bride's Liverpool.
This one is about what we mean by peace. It focuses on Micah’s vision of everyone sitting under their own vines and fig trees, with no-one making them afraid. It is a vision of peace and satisfaction, the kind of situation people long for when they are in the middle of a war.
When I went to hear Harvard Professor Michael Puett’s lecture at the University of Liverpool on ‘Chinese Philosophy and the Meaning of Life’, I had no idea that the strongest values of western culture were about to be turned on their head, but that’s what happened.
I can’t do justice to his case. You’ll have to read his book for that. I’ll settle for describing how it affected me.