Showing posts from 2014

Blogging, Twitter and Ello

When I first began writing a blog, I had many good intentions of creating a space where conversations could be started and continued on various topics. The advent of social media has meant that most of that happens in a different space now, and this space has been updated far less frequently. It's my intention to still post here occasionally, but most of my online conversation happens on twitter and facebook these days, and I'm exploring Ello as an alternative space that doesn't share my details to marketing firms quite so easily.. You can find me on social media here:

'Islamic State cannot be defeated by military action alone'

Leaders of two of Britain’s major Churches say that the UK Government must not give into the rhetoric that Islamic State can simply be bombed out of existence. In a statement released today, leaders of the Baptist Union of Great Britain and the Methodist Church in Britain say that the case for military intervention can only be supported as one part of a broader political and economic strategy to tackle the ideology of IS. The Churches have issued  a briefing on the issues  and are  urging their members to pray  and to write to their MPs asking the Government to offer greater support to refugees from Syria and Iraq as part of such a strategy. The full statement follows: The UK Government must treat with caution suggestions that Islamic State could be defeated primarily through military action. An ideology – even one as dangerous and perverse as that of IS – cannot be defeated by the use of weapons. Military action could help to protect persecuted minorities and prevent IS from

A great quote

A member of our music group used this verse from the Message translation in part of the devotions he led last night. I was struck by the wonderful language, and so share it with you here. With thanks to Alan Clark for drawing my eye to the text!

What's Happening at Tab?

A few people have heard some things have been happening at Tabernacle Baptist Church Wolverhampton, and wanted to hear more. So I have written a brief summary of the exciting things that are happening. Over recent years the church has been in a season of growth. This has meant we’ve needed to rethink the way we do some of our leadership, decision making and structuring life together so that we can still be making sure people receive our well-known warm welcome and hospitality, and also find a way into the life of the church in such a way that they are enabled to grow as disciples of Jesus. A number of years ago we began supporting a local evangelical church that had been struggling, and in 2012 we merged the two churches into one church that meets in two locations. This year, God has been generous to us, and through a significant gift we have been enabled to make some serious headway on mission, vision, and strategy. When the leadership team went away on retreat, we fe

Baptist Assembly 2014, Communion Service

A number of people have asked to have a copy of the words we used for the Communion service on Sunday afternoon. The team that write and design these sessions draw on a variety of influences, but this year our own Craig Gardiner wrote most of the significant portions. I include here the text of the Gathering Prayer, the prayer following In Memoriam, the words used to welcome all to the table, and then the invitation to come. A Gathering prayer Gather us in, Lord, the lost and the lonely, the broken and breaking, the tired and the aching who long for the nourishment found at your feast. All: Gather us in, the done and the doubting, the wishing and wondering, the puzzled and pondering who long for the company found at your feast. All: Gather us in, the proud and pretentious, the sure and superior, the never inferior, who long for the levelling found at your feast. All : Gather us in, the bright and the bustling, the stirrers, the shakers,

The Evangelical Alliance, Oasis Trust, and evangelical unity

Today has been a sad day for evangelicals in the UK. The largest umbrella organisation, the Evangelical Alliance (EA), has today discontinued the membership of Oasis Trust, an agency that has done more than almost any other to raise the profile of evangelism, youth ministry, gospel-inspired social action ministry and a distinctively Christian approach to matters of education, health and social welfare. The reason the EA did this? Steve Chalke, the founder and director of Oasis, has called for a public conversation between evangelicals around the issues of human sexuality, same-sex marriage and faithful examination of approaches to scripture. Let me be clear, what I feel is a tragedy is not that the wider evangelical constituency might differ with Steve and Oasis, but that the simple act of calling for a conversation has led to them being effectively defined as non-evangelical. It was remarked to me recently that Jesus merely had to say one sentence for Lazarus to be raised from t

Why Your Vote Matters

I very often hear people make comments about how their votes make no change, or not feeling there is any merit in getting to the polling station. Today I came across this wonderful cartoon from Dave Walker , which he has given me permission to repost from his site . I'm not sure there's any need for me to make further comment other than - get out and vote!