I guess being a U2 devotee is a bit like supporting a top-flight football team. You can’t wait for their next match, and yet there’s always a sense of dread that it won’t come to much. The rumours about a new album(s) have been circulating for years. And then suddenly, there it was. Already in iTunes playlists, without any warning. How bizarre is that?! Nothing if not bold, and perhaps mildly megalomaniacal. The Bono-haters will certainly think so. Read more
Sorry this late – It’s been an absolutely CRAZY month (including finishing a job, moving house and going on a couple of week long meetings.) Soon, normal Q service will resume, I promise!
BETTER LATE THAN NEVER, I SUPPOSE.
- This is important: Paul Vallely’s much linked (rightly) article: Christians: the world’s most persecuted people
- Nice interview with my Langham US colleague, Ben Homan, on preaching globally
- Damian Thompson as provocative as ever – about that other agent provocateur, Richard Dawkins, and his new offensiveness to the Left.
- We refuse to be enemies. This is an astonishing story from a family of Palestinian Christians living in Bethlehem.
- Dominic Lawson (son of former Chancellor Nigel, brother of celeb chef Nigella) writes wonderfully about his 19 year old daughter with Down’s Syndrome.
- Abp Justin Welby’s address at the National Prayer Breakfast, on 17th June – some great stuff
- Chris Green asks whether or not we should preach like TED talks
- God raises the dead – even for preachers like Chris!
- Why Emily Letts filmed her own abortion…
- The Twitter Disconnect: Why Christians are more loving in real life… some good stuff here
- A Nick Cave service??! Looks a lot of fun (H/T Maggi)
- Why Benedict Rogers, a Christian, opposes the very idea of a Christian political party
- So a mural artist in Montenegro considers Tito, Marx and Engels deserves to be depicted in hell… what do you think?
- Some good news from Cranmer: highlighting all the UCCF outreach efforts this term
- Mikhail Kalashnikov was apparently in ‘spiritual pain’ over his (in)famous invention
- Dave Criddle has some wisdom about engaging with the likes of Ricky Gervais on Twitter
- Andrew Brown is pretty good here, at least in what he affirms (if not in what he denies).
HAPPY NEW YEAR!
- Justin Welby, the ABC, rather delightfully writes to his 14 year old self
- One Rolex Short of Contentment – striking piece by George Monbiot
- Chris Green is v wise as ever: where never to have a quiet day
- A story of God, Redemption and the late, great Steve McQueen
This has been a very hard and sad letter to write – but it does seem the right thing. Rather than give further explanation or input, I’ll just leave it to speak for itself. It was sent to the church council over the weekend and is now going out to the All Souls church family. Read more
- Katherine Welby was wonderfully open and honest about her depression and faith here
- LivingOut: This is a remarkable new resource for people living with unwanted same-sex attraction
- Don Carson gives 6 excellent reasons not to abandon expository preaching
- CS Lewis arrives in Poet’s Corner
- Prompted by recent death of Sir John Tavener, an Interesting piece from Charles Moore about how a brush with death draws people for religion.
- Really good article on Lord Kelvin (he of the temperature scale) and his integration of faith and science
- A Concise Theology of Voluntary, Principled Book Purging – a painful read for bibliophiles!
- Is Gravity the perfect film for our godless times – a great piece from Justine Toh of the Centre for Public Christianity
Regular Q readers will know that matters pop-cultural are regularly considered here. And one of my favourite books of recent years on any subject is the brilliant Popologetics by my friend Ted Turnau. But regulars will also know that I am a fan of Steve Turner’s books, not least because he has a great way with words (I only wish he’d apply that to poetry again!) and has unrivalled experience in writing about the world of popular culture from a deeply theological perspective. So I was very excited by the arrival of his latest: Popcultured. Read more
- Why a Rabbi went to Saddleback – very moving
- 10 things a vicar needs to hear often… hint hint….
- Cranmer is trenchant as ever: Christians may be bombed but Muslims can’t be gassed.
- Some very helpful advice on how to approach reading intimidatingly old classics of theology and philosophy
- Are we exploiting church interns?
- Are sex offenders the modern lepers? The BBC reports on an extraordinary but vital ministry in an unusual Florida town
- The Six Types of Atheist from Andrew Brown
- Thabiti Anyabwile has some wisdom to bear on the thorny issue of those who say ‘the church hurt’ them
- My good friend Ziya Meral wrote this over 5 years ago – but it needs frequent revisiting: Bearing the Silence of God.
- John Crace at his hilariously trenchant best, reducing Steve Jones’ The Serpent’s Promise to 600 words.
- Culture, Class and the Decline of Marriage by Ross Douthat. Very helpful insights into the wider context of recent gay marriage debates on both sides of the Atlantic. While Brendan O’Neill sees the whole issue as a case study in conformism.
A brief plug before this outing. Someone asked how I keep track of various internet things. My secret is the wonder that is Pocket. People send me stuff or I see stuff on my RSS reader (NetNewsWire if you’re interested), and then I click pocket in the browser – and can then check them out off-line on my phone on trains and tubes etc. Simple really – so there you are.
- This is a wakeup call – a global rich list tied to an appeal to donate to the world’s poorest. Very simple, very effective.
- A more interesting conversation now that “Richard Dawkins has lost…”
- A brief but pastorally important response to suicide amongst believers.