Latest Issue: 23 August 2014
23 August 2014
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  • Promises don't put food on the table

    The Prime Minister’s promise that in future all government policies would be scrutinised for their effects on family life would deserve three hearty cheers if this was the start of his administration. But coming almost at the end, it will strike many people as a little hollow.

  • Helping strangers takes courage

    At the heart of British policy towards refugees is a contradiction that was tragically illustrated by the discovery of the contents of a sealed shipping container at Tilbury Docks, newly arrived from Belgium. It contained 34 Sikhs fleeing persecution in Afghanistan – and the body of one who died on the way.

  • Grim parody of a golden age Damian Howard

    The jihadist group now calling itself the Islamic State, which has terrorised religious minorities in Syria and Iraq, has declared its intention to restore the caliphate. Yet the extremists’ aims are remote from those of earlier Islamic rulers

  • African paradoxes Brendan Walsh

    In Kenya earlier this month, a unique gathering met to discuss the Church in Africa and how it can contribute to the future of a continent poised at a critical juncture

  • Wounds that haven’t healed Michael Sean Winters

    The Archbishop of St Louis celebrated a Mass for peace and justice this week after police shot dead an unarmed black teenager in the suburb of Ferguson. The death of Michael Brown and the heavy-handed police response to street protests is a reminder of America’s stark racial divide

  • Journey in the spirit of openness Kevin Rafferty

    The Pope’s overarching message during his visit to Korea was one of reconciliation between North and South – and between the Vatican and the regional superpower, China

  • Silence that speaks volumes Sean Wales

    Absolute quiet is prescribed at many points in the Roman Missal but sacred stillness that surfaces spontaneously in prayer is more precious than any other

  • The Bible Nicholas King, reviewed by Richard Bauckham

    Very few people have singlehandedly translated the whole Bible into English. Even William Tyndale did not manage to complete the task. So Nicholas King’s translation is a remarkable achievement. It is also distinctive in that the Old Testament (which includes the “deuterocanonical” books) is translated from the ancient Greek version (the Septuagint), rather than from the Hebrew.

  • Hot tickets Mark Lawson

    The main difference between the official Edinburgh Festival and the Fringe is scale, especially in budgets and running times: the main official event, “The James Plays” (reviewed here last week) stretched to around nine hours while the average Fringe show lasts 60 minutes, meaning that this selection is made from around 50 productions I was able to see in eight days.