Why ‘no religion’ is the new religion

On Tuesday I attended Linda Woodhead’s lecture ‘Why “no religion” is the new religion’ at the British Academy in London.

Linda is a sociologist of religion at Lancaster University and surveys how people describe their religious beliefs and affiliations. The latest news is that ‘nones’ (no religion) have been growing, and last month for the first time they hit 50% of those surveyed.

Read more ...

Wheat and tares and labourers in vineyards

A commentary on the responses to Sexuality and the Citizenship of Heaven.

I was not surprised by the responses to my article on Sexuality and Citizenship of Heaven.

Read more ...

Testing religious beliefs

When it comes to religious beliefs, how do we know which ones are true?

The Modern Church website states that

Religious beliefs can and should develop in the light of new insights.

We have recently been asked

So what tests can be made on these ‘new insights’?

This post is my way of answering the question.

I have often written in defence of liberal theology; see Modern Church and Liberal Theology and Liberalism when it’s liberal. My book Liberal Faith in a Divided Church provides greater analysis.

Read more ...

How can we disagree well? A personal response to the #Primates2016 meeting

THIS WEEK the heads of Anglican churches around the world (known as Primates) will gather in Canterbury to debate the future of their global network, the Anglican Communion, because of deep divisions over church teachings on sexuality.

Last week, leaders with a conservative outlook said they would attend (they boycotted the last Primates meeting in 2011) but threatened to walk out if the meeting does not go in the way they would wish.

Read more ...

Sexuality and the citizenship of Heaven

‘We all know that love is the answer’, opined Woody Allen, ‘but while you're waiting for the answer, sex raises some pretty good questions’ (Interview, New York Times, December 1, 1975).  Indeed.  And none more so than for Anglican Primates, meeting in London next week. 

I wrote Sex, Sense and Non-Sense for Anglicans – which was published on the Modern Church website in mid-December – as a primer intended for the gathering of Anglican Primates.  The essay was due to be published this week, but the treatment of clergy in same-sex marriages, and most recently Canon Jeremy Davies in Winchester, brought the publication date forward.

Read more ...