Peter Rollins & Impossible Tales for Lent: A Review of Seven More Parables from The Orthodox Heretic

Back at Christmas time, I reviewed Peter Rollins’ latest book, The Orthodox Heretic and Other Impossible Tales. With the traditional Christian season of Lent nearly upon us, Rollins’ publisher Paraclete Press has released seven additional parables, available to all those who have purchased the book. Rollins’ tales are short and sometimes cryptic. In the book, […]

Choosing My Religion: A Conversation about our Book, Meet the Evangelicals

Dr Claire Mitchell and I will have a conversational workshop about a book we are writing together, provisionally titled Meet the Evangelicals: Journeys in a Northern Irish Evangelical Subculture, from 9.30-12.30 on Friday February 26, 2010, at East Belfast Mission on the Newtownards Road. The book is the product of more than a decade of […]

Marianne Elliott Book Review: When God Took Sides

Marianne Elliott’s latest book, provocatively titled When God Took Sides: Religion and Identity in Ireland – Unfinished History, (Oxford University Press, 2009) describes how Catholics and Protestants in Ireland perceive each other – and explains why this matters so much today. Elliott’s title conveys the idea that both Catholics and Protestants assumed that God was […]

The Suspension of Bishop Paul Verryn & the Zimbabwean Refugees: Problems with being a Prophet?

Last month Bishop Paul Verryn was suspended from the Methodist Church of Southern Africa. Bishop Verryn was a prominent anti-apartheid campaigner and has in recent years become well-known for opening the doors of the Central Methodist Church in Johannesburg to Zimbabwean refugees. About 2,000 displaced Zimbabweans sleep in the church every night. Everyone seems to […]

Evangelicals & Gay Rights in Ireland: Evangelical Alliance’s Surprise Support for Civil Partnerships Bill

One issue that is sure to bring Christian voices out in the public sphere is gay rights. The overwhelming impression that one gets is that Christians are opposed to extending gay rights, particularly when it comes to marriage or civil partnerships. A surprising exception to this has been the Evangelical Alliance in the Republic of […]

What can the Churches Learn from Zimbabwe’s Masowe Apostles?: Isabel Mukonyora Book Review, Wandering a Gendered Wilderness

I’m intrigued by the astronomical growth of Christianity in the majority world, and I think it’s important that Christians in the West ask themselves what the churches in all the far-flung corners of the globe can teach us. That’s a part of what motivates my research on charismatic Christianity in Zimbabwe. During my fieldwork in […]

EU Year Against Poverty & Social Exclusion: Social Justice Ireland Critiques the Irish Budget

Ireland’s economic miracle is over. And for those who were passed over by the Celtic Tiger, times could get even tougher. That’s the analysis offered by Social Justice Ireland (the organisation formerly known as the Council of Religious in Ireland – CORI), in its Policy Briefing on Poverty, released this week. Social Justice Ireland points […]

Church Action Poverty: Northern Ireland Launch and Call to Action

“The churches in Northern Ireland are too posh-looking, their hedges are too high.” This was the assessment offered by Margaret Blair, a volunteer at The Gap Christian outreach project in Coleraine, speaking on BBC Radio Ulster’s Sunday Sequence. Blair’s interview was part of a piece by reporter Mark McCleary on a new Northern Ireland branch […]