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Great texts

  • John V. Taylor: The Christlike God (Scm Classics)

    John V. Taylor: The Christlike God (Scm Classics)
    A serious theological book which is the companion to JVT's classic work "The Go-between God". Anyone who is frustrated by (fellow) Christians that choose to define God so tightly that faith seems impossible, or seem to align faith with "happiness" despite the evidence to the contrary should read how faith is really a mix of " wonder and comprehension, illumination and darkness, loss and possession, abasement and bliss". If you want to stop to "think" about God then this is a book to read thoughtfully in the company of one of great Christians of the 20th Century

  • Jean Vanier: Community and Growth: Our Pilgrimage Together Revised Edition

    Jean Vanier: Community and Growth: Our Pilgrimage Together Revised Edition
    A revised collection of the thoughts and ideas of the founder of the L'arche Community - "faith without boundaries". This is a classic book - for everyone seeking faith and to grow in their faith

  • Rowan  Williams: Anglican Identities

    Rowan Williams: Anglican Identities
    As someone who is both a passionate but frustrated Anglican - glimpsing sometimes all that Anglican could be and seeing on a daily basis all that it isn't, this book was a wonderful account of what liberal Anglicanism - tolerant, inclusive, supportive, intelligent and profoundly spiritual, just might be. Of course it is not an easy read - it takes time and effort to grasp what RW is saying but the effort is worthwhile

  • John Drane         : Do Christians Know How to Be Spiritual?

    John Drane : Do Christians Know How to Be Spiritual?
    If you are a committed member of a local Church and wonder why others do not see the point - or wonder whether it might be possible to be more spiritual outside the confines then you could read this book which is a thoughtful introduction to what is meant by a post-christian society.

  • Tom Wright: Simply Christian: Why Christianity Makes Sense

    Tom Wright: Simply Christian: Why Christianity Makes Sense
    This is a detailed read from Tom Wright which makes the case for the Christian faith in contemporary society. Its thoughtful, challenging, and gentle.

  • W.H. Vanstone: Farewell in Christ

    W.H. Vanstone: Farewell in Christ
    Vanstone's final work, which explores the mystery of existence, the mystery of my soul, the mystery of meaning, - and none of this becomes possible without intellectual doubt. Is this what Dawkins et al will never understand?

  • John Pritchard: The Life and Work of a Priest

    John Pritchard: The Life and Work of a Priest
    This book should be compulsory reading for all enquirers, ordinands, and current clergy - perhaps adding in all elders and churchwardens for good measure. It charts in a profoundly hopeful way the joys and pressures of contemporary priesthood, and avoids the pitfalls of theological bias or the bland functional understandings of leadership.

  • Timothy Radcliffe: What Is the Point of Being a Christian?

    Timothy Radcliffe: What Is the Point of Being a Christian?
    A prophetic introduction to the Christian faith for those who struggle to find God amid the complexities of life

  • Robert Dimery: 1001 Albums you must hear before you die

    Robert Dimery: 1001 Albums you must hear before you die
    Just a great read - extensive intelligent reviews which bring back memories, stimulate to seek out, and inspire to add to the wish list.

All time Top Ten albums

  • Bob Dylan -

    Bob Dylan: Blood on the Tracks
    Probably the best single collection of orginal songs - performed by Bob with his inimitable non-music style - the best produced Dylan album into the bargain

  • Miles Davis -

    Miles Davis: Kind of Blue
    I remember the first time I heard this - on a loaned Walkman on a very turbulent flight to Belfast - it has rightly been described as a milestone in 20th century jazz. I remember playing to a group of spell-bound 9/10 year olds in a Primary school music workshop

  • Portishead -

    Portishead: Dummy
    Every once in while I listen to an album whose orginality leaves me instinctively knowing that music will never be the same - that the goalposts of repetoire have been changed for ever. Dummy is just one of those rare treats

  • Prefab Sprout -

    Prefab Sprout: Andromeda Heights
    In 1997 I escaped for the afternoon from the madhouse of an ordination training residential to the comparative sanity of my friend Tony's studio. During a tea break in a session, Tony said these imortal words " I've just found this amazing album" and my love affair with Andromeda Heights began - sanity was restored and I completed the residental and training.

  • Moloko -

    Moloko: Things to make and do
    Brilliant music within the scope of the dance music genre. Crisp instrumentation, meets cool beats, and the voice of Roisin - how I love Moloko

  • Craig Armstrong -

    Craig Armstrong: Piano Works
    If I were not Tom Allen ( artistically and musically speaking) I would be Craig Armstrong - from my discovery of him through Massive Attack I have loved and admired his work - and Piano Works covers his repetoire in stunning style

  • Joe Cocker -

    Joe Cocker: Sheffield Steel
    The greatest album from the greatest rock intrepreter of them all - genius production meets some of the best songs of all time sung by that voice - I've confess that I have sampled the album to oblivion

  • Paul Simon -

    Paul Simon: Graceland
    Had to be a Paul Simon album and it had to be Graceland. A epoch making album which opened African music to the world but seamlessly combined that music with western rock and pop with songs to die for.

  • Cosmic Rough Riders -

    Cosmic Rough Riders: Enjoy the melodic sunshine
    Glasgow's finest produce the ultimate guitar-song album of pure delight and of a quality that puts Athlete et al in the shade - shame it was two years too early and the lead singer left after this debut album

  • Massive Attack -

    Massive Attack: Blue Lines
    OK so Bristol has launched Portishead, Tricky and Roni Size, but it was the staggering impact of this debut which created a genre in trip-hop and a collective approach to song-writing, band membership which has influenced a generation and spawned so many other deriratives. From the low-fi paranoia of "Five Man Army" and the unrepeatable melancholic splendour of "Unfinished Sympathy", this is a 20th century classic.

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23 February 2005



Oh heck...It does make me so cross that the likes of Mr Green can claim to speak for Christians...His approach seems to barely stop short of intimidation.
Just been reading Richard Giles "Creating Uncommon Worship" (there is a connection, I promise, unlikely though it seems)
He laments the loss of the "People of The Way" as a label for Christ's followers, since this carries within it the reality of our unfinished, pilgrim condition. Perhaps we should reclaim it here and now, to rescue our calling from the sort of distortion perpetrated by "Christian Voice"?


That story pretty much made me want to scream - it's so frustrating trying to do anything and be Christian when we all get tarred with one brush.

Kathryn - People of the Way - sounds fantastic to me.


Interesting how Green avoided discussing whether this was blackmail, because that's exactly what it is: "Refuse the donation or we'll picket your offices". Indeed, it's somewhat disingenuous for him to say that Maggie's avoided a PR disaster with his help, because there wouldn't have *been* any danger of a PR disaster *without* his "help".

Kathryn - I'll sign up for "People of the Way", too :-)


i heard the story on R4 too. so sad to hear the way christian voice articulated their arguement. what amazed me was that the actors from jerry springer opera show had sacrifically given up their earnings to donate to the charity - seemed more christlike to me!


Here here to Barky!!!


I suppose it would be too unliberal to suggest taking action against Christian Voice for misuse of the name, misrepresentation, impersonating followers of Jesus, etc. Used to be called excommunication. How come it's only the rabid Right who ever think about practising it now? I'm sure there was something at the back of Common Worship Pastoral Services about bells, books and candles, wasn't there?


Sorry that you find it so easy to snear at brothers in Christ who are standing up for the Gospel and for the Lord Jesus Christ - perhaps if we had more clergy willing to stand up for God then the Church of England would be in less of a mess.


Hmm food for thought there Jason. The one thing that I thought I had achieved in writing that particular post was to avoid snearing - which I accept would have been very easy given how fundamentally I diasgree with the Christian view expressed - and how strongly I object small unrepresentative groups hijacking the gospel for personal objectives - but it seems I failed.

What I thought I written was focus on the actions of Stephen Green (which was basically blackmail)and to lay them open to Gospel standards.
2. To suggest that actually if God who is God is well able to defend himself/herself and does not need us to offer human defence - certainly if it as the expense of people receiving healing. If I may put it starkly it would seem to depend on whether you believe that our God is motivated by vengeance and revenge or love and healing. If it is the first he needs our help - if it is the later then he does not for love will prevail.
3. That the idea that Britain (or England)is a Christian country (see the Christian Action website)actually leads us down dangerous roads with fascist tendencies. Sure I would like everyone in Britain to be willing embrace the Christian faith - I have no interest in enforcing such a position.

Christopher Shell


The point that God is able to defend himself is true (not to say a cliche :o)), but not to the point, since one wont be able to find any members of CV that would deny this. But if they wouldnt deny it, what is the point of saying it?

Normally it's widely accepted that God can work in us and through us. If we stand up for justice and righteousness, then we're being his coworkers.

One should also distinguish between being involved in a fight (which all Christians are) and seeking vengeance. Fights are against principalities and powers; vengeance would be against human individuals whom it is not our place to judge.

Ive demonstrated with CV but I have no illusions that Britain is a Christian country. Is that what they believe? On the contrary, they always seem to be pointing out evidence that it isnt.

But I long for it to be a Christian country, & will work to that end. Because Christianity is what makes sense, innit? Logical, statistical, spiritual sense.

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