• December News From The Clergy

    December News From The Clergy

    25 Nov 2019 • From the Clergy

    In 1997, Birmingham City Council invented Winterval, a clumsy elision of ‘Winter Festival’ which ran through the winters of 1997-98 and 1998-99. The aim was to encourage people to engage in celebrations in the newly-rejuvenated city centre, encompassing various festivals which took place during the winter months, including Diwali (Hindu), Ramadan (Muslim), Hanukkah (Jewish), Chinese New Year and, of course, Christmas. For the country’s multi-ethnic second city, home to several different faith communities, the idea was not without merit. Church leaders, however, immediately criticised the idea in depressingly familiar terms, deeming it ‘political correctness’ and decrying the ‘sell-out’ to secularism.

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  • Future of our Church

    Future of our Church

    17 Nov 2019 • From the Clergy

    Join the conversation as to how ministry is shaped in the future.

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  • November News From The Clergy

    November News From The Clergy

    4 Nov 2019 • From the Clergy

    Memory is a strange thing. Many of us – and not only those of more mature years – will find we can vividly recall events of many years ago, but forget things that happened yesterday, or even why we came upstairs five minutes ago! Memory can also be an illusion; do we really have that childhood memory, or have we heard the story of a certain event so often that we think we remember it?

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  • October News From the Clergy

    October News From the Clergy

    25 Sep 2019 • From the Clergy

    Eleven years ago, during a group discussion at theological college, we somehow ended up talking about famous fish of the Bible. Given the lack of contenders in this category (the fish in Jonah notwithstanding), it mystifies me now how we got into this topic, what we were meant to be discussing, or how we kept going for so long. I certainly never imagined that more than a decade later, I would be writing a magazine piece about animals of the Bible.

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  • September News From the Clergy

    September News From the Clergy

    28 Aug 2019 • From the Clergy

    Ordinary Time between Pentecost and Advent can drag on a little, so I think I’m going to launch a campaign for the end of September to the beginning of December to be officially designated Angeltide!
    On September 29th we celebrate the feast day of St Michael and All Angels and at the end of October we have All Hallows. No sooner have the pumpkins and witches’ costumes left our shop shelves than their place is taken by Christmas cards and decorations in which angels feature prominently.

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  • July and August News from the Clergy

    July and August News from the Clergy

    24 Jun 2019 • From the Clergy

    I am not what anyone would call a tranquil person. Sitting still is anathema to me, while my mind needs to be active constantly; my idea of light holiday reading is an 800-page history of the place I am visiting. Just occasionally, however, I can find myself at peace and – ironically for someone who thinks civilisation stops where the streetlights run out – it is most often when confronted with rural sunsets.

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  • June News from the Clergy

    June News from the Clergy

    29 May 2019 • From the Clergy

    “I hope you’ll feel better soon;” “I hope you have a good holiday;” “I hope I get a question on … in the exam;” “I hope to be able to come to the party.”
    Hope is a small word which we all use, probably on a daily basis, but what exactly do we mean by it?
    The Concise Oxford Dictionary defines hope as: “expectation and desire combined.” In reality, it’s one of those words which will mean different things to different people depending on their circumstances.

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  • May News From the Clergy

    May News From the Clergy

    29 Apr 2019 • From the Clergy

    Bishop Graham reflects on his visit to Morogoro.
    “Bwana asifiwe” were the Swahili words I kept hearing during a recent visit to Tanzania. It’s used as a greeting and means “Praise the Lord”.
    As a group from the Diocese of Worcester visiting our sisters and brothers in Christ in the Diocese of Morogoro, we were caught up in many times of praise. Together we sang and prayed, talked and danced. People, young and old, seemed to almost burst with joy; the women clicking their tongues from side to side in their mouths to make the unique ululating sound.

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  • April News From The Clergy

    April News From The Clergy

    25 Mar 2019 • From the Clergy

    The Mince Pies and Christmas cakes were hardly off the supermarket shelves before their place was taken by Hot Cross Buns and chocolate eggs. Enter the word “Easter” into Google Images and you have to scroll through 39 pictures of eggs, rabbits and chicks before you reach the first one of a cross. One is all you get before a return to the other images and you have to scroll through another 15 before you find a picture of Christ and even then He shares the space with a rabbit!

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  • March News From The Clergy

    March News From The Clergy

    1 Mar 2019 • From the Clergy

    At the 1993 Conservative Party Conference in Blackpool, John Major launched what became one of the most widely-derided and satirised campaigns of modern times: ‘Back to Basics’. To be fair, the Prime Minister’s words were wilfully misinterpreted by the media; as he himself would observe years later, it was an example of how soundbites taken out of context can be misleading.

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