Issue 19-11-2021

Featured story

Past, caring: Tony D’Souza’s Thought for the Week

FREE 18 Nov 2021 | by Tony D’Souza

My childhood memories are of carefree days spent playing on the old bomb sites of London. These were the greatest adventure playgrounds imaginable. The fallen masonry, the crushed arches, and the little culverts where you could hide, giggling, while your playmates looked for you. We played for hours on end....

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Quakers lament ‘tiny steps’ of COP26

FREE 18 Nov 2021 | by Rebecca Hardy

'This is particularly unjust for people in the Global South who are feeling the first and worst impacts of the climate crisis, despite being least responsible.' | Photo: by Michael Preston, BYM

COP26 has delivered tiny steps forward when giant leaps are needed, Britain Yearly Meeting (BYM) has said, after the summit drew to an end last weekend.

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Looking for hope after COP26? Tim Gee says it’s faith that’s most sustaining

18 Nov 2021 | by Tim Gee

‘The essence of transformative social change is to make what at the time seems impossible seem in hindsight inevitable.’ | Photo: by La Victorie on Unsplash

Along with many others, my attentions in recent weeks have been on Glasgow, host to the twenty-sixth UN Climate Change Conference of the Parties (COP26). There, the governments of the world have been negotiating their response to the climate crisis.

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The forgotten bombardment: An ‘English mistake’

18 Nov 2021 | by Marlies Tjallingii and Marieke Faber Clarke

‘Teacher and storyteller Stan Fritschy speaks about the five people who died when the English made a mistake.’ | Photo: Historisch Centrum Overijssel

I am a British national but my mother was Dutch. Perhaps that’s why I find it interesting to gain glimpses of how other people perceive my country.

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Battle royal: Eleanor Nesbitt on unlikely Quaker Josiah Harlan

18 Nov 2021 | by Eleanor Nesbitt

‘Josiah was proud of US republicanism but was attracted to monarchy.’ | Photo: from Wikimedia Commons

O ne hundred and fifty years ago, Josiah Harlan, a very unusual Quaker, died of tuberculosis in San Francisco. Josiah had been readmitted to the Religious Society of Friends after the withdrawal of a judgement against him for violating the rule of pacifism. His career – in Burma, India and Afghanistan –...

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English Pastoral: An inheritance, by James Rebanks

18 Nov 2021 | by Simon Webb

'One farm reaching for sustainability cannot solve all of our environmental problems, but Rebanks’ book gives his experiment an added significance.' | Photo: Book cover of English Pastoral: An inheritance, by James Rebanks

All the churches are now talking about the environment, but how many of us can talk about it with real authority? To have a comprehensive idea of what’s happening, one needs knowledge in a variety of fields: chemistry, botany, economics, even astronomy and palaeontology.

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Quakers urged to stand by strikers

FREE 18 Nov 2021 | by Rebecca Hardy

Quakers have been urged to stand by workers at Clarks shoe company who have been striking for weeks. The workers from Clarks’ main distribution centre in Street, Somerset, have accused the 200-year-old shoemaker of betraying its Quaker roots by demanding that employees accept a significant pay cut or face the...

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QSA ramps up mobile library for winter homelessness

18 Nov 2021 | by Rebecca Hardy

Quaker Social Action (QSA) has said that it is ‘ramping up’ its mobile library service Turn a Corner for the winter months, as charities brace for a rise in homelessness.

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CTE appoints new general secretary

18 Nov 2021 | by Rebecca Hardy

Britain Yearly Meeting (BYM) has welcomed a new general secretary of Churches Together in England (CTE). Mike Royal, a pentecostal bishop, will take up the position in March 2022 when Paul Goodliff retires.

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Brighton Friends raise licensing concern

18 Nov 2021 | by Rebecca Hardy

Brighton Friends attended a council hearing last week about a new restaurant opening next to its Meeting house.

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Return from a Distant Country, by Alister McGrath

18 Nov 2021 | by Frank Regan

Alister McGrath started out as an atheist enamoured of Marxism and scientism. He studied chemistry at Oxford, specialising in quantum theory. Along the way he discovered Christianity, being fascinated by its intellectual and imaginative depth. He wrote this short, intriguing book to set out the points where he believes science...

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Poem: A Gathered Meeting

18 Nov 2021 | by Clare Wigzell

Written in response to the Dovetailing art installation at Farfield Quaker Meeting House, July 2021. Each time, from a new page, stillness uncoils from within me, to hang, suspended, in the Meeting’s light.

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Letters - 19 November 2021

18 Nov 2021 | by The Friend

Brummana’s supporters The dramatic plight of Lebanon continues to be headline news and so it should be. In a country disintegrating, just where Brummana High School (BHS) would be without its Quaker supporters conjures a terrible image: one of students, staff and families at breaking point and a country...

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