Following the success of Back to Church Sunday, the Sunday papers speculated about whether the credit crunch is forcing people to reassess their values, bringing some of them back to church. (Ht Start the Week). Meanwhile comment is Free at the Guardian is hosted a series of articles last week on 'Can Religion Help Us Through the Slump?' Here's the line-up
Monday's response - Julia Neuberger: Whether you're religious or not, what matters is the desire to make a difference to other people's lives
Tuesday's response - Francis Davis: Across the country it will be priests and imams who stand with local people in their moments of need . Davis is one of the authors of Moral but No Compass, which surveyed the charitable work of the church, and pointed out the inadequacy of the Governments dealings with Chrisitan charities.
snippet: While Gordon Brown's response (to the recession) has been to lead us into even more borrowing, there will be thousands for whom a hug will be just as crucial as their gas meter is ripped out in front of their eyes or as they find themselves locked out of their houses by insistent lenders and landlords.
In neighbourhoods across the country it will be priests and imams who stand with local people in such moments of terror. They are, after all, often the only "professionals" to have the courage to actually live among the people with whom they work.
Wednesday's response - Ishtiaq Hussain: Like other people of faith, Muslims are enjoined to be charitable; crucial during times like these
Thursday's response - Graham Kings: When belts tighten, do they have to tighten around the necks of the poor?
Friday's response Nick Spencer: Some varieties of religion prey on the poor, others offer them help. Both kinds will flourish during the recession
Ht Thinking Anglicans.
... with a whole host of carol services coming up, I'm challenged by all of these about the message I'll be preaching. Often I try to tie Christmas in to something in the news, or something topical, and this year the challenge is to relate it to the recession and the implosion in global capitalism. First main one on Weds (Yeovil College), I'll probably post a full list later this week.