An inspiring response to our biggest problem

Jan 7, 2020 by

by Andrew Symes, Anglican Mainstream (First published in Church of England Newspaper): “A moving and hopeful book” says one reviewer, and yet the subject of this slim publication is living with incurable cancer, and facing the inevitable prospect of death. How can this be “hopeful”, and why might it be appropriate for the shared time of optimism that is New Year? Jeremy Marshall is an able and successful financier, married with three children, who at the age of 49 was diagnosed with a rare...

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Post-Election 2019: the state of the nation

Dec 17, 2019 by

By Andrew Symes, Anglican Mainstream: Last week’s election result was a significant moment for our country. While the Conservatives won with a huge majority, large numbers of people either didn’t vote at all (some on principle), or ‘held their nose’ and voted Tory because the other options looked worse, not because of enthusiasm for and complete faith in Boris and his programme. The analysis of the election continues in the media (including Christian blogs) and the political parties , and will...

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The four Sundays of Advent

Dec 10, 2019 by

by Andrew Symes, Anglican Mainstream: I’ve worshipped in Anglican churches which don’t use the lectionary, and those which do. While there are advantages in not being tied to a set list of readings, and particularly in preaching chronologically through a book, the lectionary also has great assets. It has a long tradition – many of the patterns of readings date back to the early church. Our godly forbears thought long and hard about the effect readings, and their themes, have on the...

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“The Tory Party at prayer”?

Dec 3, 2019 by

If so, the C of E reflects the new ‘conservatism’ of the secular progressive elites, not tried and tested values. by Andrew Symes, Anglican Mainstream: As the General Election campaign enters its frantic last few days, church leaders have made a number of interventions which tread a fine line between the pastoral and the political. Interestingly these have not always been, as one might expect based on past form, offering strong hints of support towards parties on the left (as in...

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Church attended by John Stott now offers yoga and mindfulness

Nov 19, 2019 by

by Andrew Symes, Anglican Mainstream: St Paul’s Church in Cambridge is a large red brick building situated on Hills Road on the way to the train station if you’re travelling from the town centre. Its architecture is typical of a number of churches built in the second half of the 19th century as part of a renewed commitment from the Church of England to urban mission in the context of rapidly expanding populations at the time. Many of these buildings were home to an evangelical ministry: St...

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The whole gospel addresses the world’s wrong thinking, not just the church’s comfort

Nov 12, 2019 by

By Andrew Symes, Anglican Mainstream: Is there a crisis in the nation, with a desperate need for radical change in government policies concerning the environment, health and social care, law and order, education, and our relationship with the EU? Or is there more a sense of ennui, of weariness with a stalemated political process, a disappointment with leadership, a longing to be “godly and quietly governed”? As we approach a general election which may potentially result in a continuation of...

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