Who should we blame?

No Blacks, no Dogs, no IrishThe other day we watched a film about a Jew, living in America, who had escaped Austria when the Nazis took over. Before she left Austria, the Nazis stole all the family possessions, including a famous  work of art worth millions of dollars. Sixty years later the painting was displayed in an art gallery in Vienna and the film describes her, eventually successful, efforts to restore the painting to its rightful owner.

In a sub-plot there are flashbacks in the film, to the period when Austria was taken over by the Nazis. We see scenes where the population was stirred up in hatred for the Jews. Jewish families were humiliated by ordinary people on the street, and of course they were eventually led away  to their deaths. [Read more…]

Following Jesus in the 21st Century

jesus-follow-meWhat does it mean to be a follower of Jesus in the 21st century? Is there a difference between being a Christian and a follower of Jesus? Do we have to reach a particular standard before we can be a disciple? How can we literally follow him when we can’t actually see him? [Read more…]

It is normal to be generous

Having run a charity for 25 years, I am constantly amazed at the generosity of normal people. When confronted with needs, the normal reaction is to respond to those needs. The only thing which stops us giving is the nature of money itself. We live in an economy which encourages us to be selfish rather than generous, to accumulate wealth rather than circulate our resources through giving to others. [Read more…]

You’ve never had it so good

war deaths

Contrary to common perception, the number of people dying through war and conflict has drastically reduced.

Pessimists and scare-mongerers like to say that the world is getting worse and worse. The opposite is true. Television news and newspapers make us more aware of problems throughout the world but statistics paint a very different picture. As Harold Macmillan said back in 1957,  “Most of our people have never had it so good”. Extreme poverty is reducing, diseases are being eliminated, fewer people are dying because of war and life expectancy is improving. If you want a fuller picture, read on. [Read more…]

A party for working people? (UK)

Minimum WageApparently, George Osborne and Iain Duncan Smith have decided to cut benefits to people of working age. This will include tax credits payable to people in work and which support families on a very low income. They claim this is a part of, “making work pay“!  Many of those affected will be on the minimum wage. It seems crazy to me that the government  (or the taxpayer, you and me) should subsidise companies which do not pay enough to their staff to enable them to look after their families. The answer must be to increase the minimum wage sufficiently to make work really pay.

[Read more…]

We could all use a little grace

Jenn BosticChristians are often accused of being judgemental, and unfortunately, this is often true. On last Sunday’s, “Song of Praise”, BBC programme I heard a song which really emphasises how we should not be so quick to judge other people and show “a little grace”.

God shows an immense amount of grace towards us. I cannot find better words to express how we could us “a little grace” towards our fellow human beings.

[Read more…]

3000 Vietnamese child slaves in the United Kingdom!

Child slaves

Child slaves

Some 3,000 Vietnamese children are enslaved by criminal gangs in the UK to work in brutal conditions in the European country, a report says.

“By our calculations there are around 3,000 Vietnamese children in the UK who are being used for profit by criminal gangs,” said Philip Ishola, the former head of the UK’s Counter Human Trafficking Bureau, the Guardian reported on Saturday.

(This is an article shared on Facebook by “Made in a free world” and produced by PRESSTV.) [Read more…]

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