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Religion

The Archbishop Of Canterbury Justin Welby's First Easter Sunday In Office

Live from Golgotha

31 March 2013 18:04

A rather charming and typically self-deprecating Easter sermon from Archbishop Justin at Canterbury Cathedral; I’m beginning to like him. His subject was the inevitability of disillusion with things like governments… Continue reading

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Pope Francis Attends Easter Mass and Urbi Et Orbi Blessing in St. Peter's Square

Happy Easter

31 March 2013 11:15

It is a glorious morning, suitable weather to mark this joyous day in the Christian calendar. The leading column in this week’s issue of the magazine considers the Easter story… Continue reading

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A snow-dusted rural parish. (PATRICK HERTZOG/AFP/Getty Images)

Brace yourself for the real experience of going to a rural parish service on Easter Sunday

31 March 2013 7:30

‘And we extend a special welcome to all our visitors here today.’ That’s the vicar speaking; and this Sunday is one of the two days in the year when you… Continue reading

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John Banville's The Sea wins the 2005 Booker Prize. (Chris Jackson/Getty Images)

Interview with a writer: John Banville

29 March 2013 11:00

The salubrious surroundings of the Waldorf Hotel seem like a very apt setting to interview a master of style and sophistication. When I arrive in the lobby, John Banville is… Continue reading

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Assisi In Umbria Birthplace Of Francis Of Assisi From Who The Newly Elected Pontiff Has Taken His Papal Name

Holy Week is a time for contemplation and renewal

29 March 2013 10:47

Good Friday is a day for contemplation. If you have time, do read Roger Scruton’s piece in the latest issue of the Spectator. It is, among other things, a deep… Continue reading

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Rowan Williams; more of a Game of Thrones fan than a Lord of the Rings one? Image: Getty

The life of a former ABC

21 March 2013 9:43

Steerpike is back in this week’s magazine. As ever, here is your preview: ‘”A Cambridge student reports this snippet from a Sainsbury’s checkout. ‘Is that a Lord of the Rings… Continue reading

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A view of the Himalayan Mountain range of Annapurna and Mount Machhapuchre. PRAKASH MATHEMA/AFP/Getty Images

The pleasure of reading Rumer Godden’s India

27 February 2013 11:07

Rumer Godden’s prose tugs two ways at once. It is subtle, descriptive, and light, but also direct and unashamed of being turned inside out until darkness consumes it, rendering what… Continue reading

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Cardinal O'Brien standing next to Gordon Brown at a function in 2006. (SHAUN CURRY/AFP/Getty Images)

Cardinal Keith O’Brien’s prayers

26 February 2013 9:48

As the late Christopher Hitchens used to say of the most vociferous, gay-obsessed clergy: ‘I have a rule of thumb for such clerics and have never known it to fail:… Continue reading

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Image: Getty

The Koran and Richard Dawkins’s survival instinct

25 February 2013 16:33

I thought that readers might be interested in this new piece from me on Islam, the Koran and Richard Dawkins’s survival instinct.

100 Comments
The choir perform from within the Dome sanctuary of St Paul's Cathedral. Picture: LEON NEAL/AFP/Getty

Discovering poetry: how the Psalms made the English

19 February 2013 11:14

Psalm 42, verses 1-8 Philip Sidney                                         Miles Coverdale Miles Coverdale’s translation of the psalms was among the first fruit of Henry VIII’s ambivalent reformation. The religion of Henry’s England was… Continue reading

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David Cameron leaves Downing Street for Parliament earlier this evening. Image: Getty

Can Christians still have Holy Matrimony?

5 February 2013 22:52

That’s that then. Marriage will change, one way or another. Progress has won. Cue lots of right-on politicians talking about how proud they are to have ushered in such a… Continue reading

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Picture: Getty Images

Will the European court force churches to conduct gay weddings?

5 February 2013 17:21

Would the European Court of Human Rights force churches to conduct same-sex marriages against their will? That’s the professed fear of some opponents of the Same Sex Marriage Bill being… Continue reading

18 Comments
Justin Welby was invested as Archbishop of Canterbury this morning. Image: Getty

Church of England 2.0

4 February 2013 16:47

Welcome Rt Rev Justin Welby, who became the 105th Archbishop of Canterbury this morning at St Pauls. The Church of England’s first tweeting ABC has been a bit quiet online… Continue reading

4 Comments

Video: Debating Richard Dawkins

4 February 2013 8:41

The video of my debate with Richard Dawkins, Rowan Williams and Tariq Ramadan is now available online. Richard Dawkins speaks third, and I speak last.

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Image: Getty

Debating Richard Dawkins

2 February 2013 9:59

I spent Thursday evening at the Cambridge Union debating the motion ‘This House believes religion has no place in the 21st century.’ I spoke against the motion. My opponents on… Continue reading

119 Comments
Elvis Presley appears in a dream to Enoch O’Reilly, the "hero" of Peter Murphy's 'Shall We Gather At The River', and Enoch is compelled to become a radiovangelist, albeit one who does not believe in God. Image: Getty

Review – Shall We Gather At The River, by Peter Murphy

24 January 2013 17:09

Shall We Gather At The River is a book of unfortunate endings — the stories of nine suicides hang from a plot-line that tells of a freak flood in the… Continue reading

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Communities Secretary Eric Pickles has insisted that the government does 'do God'. Picture: Getty

Eric Pickles ‘does God’, but does the government really agree?

15 January 2013 13:56

Personally, I don’t wear a cross, on the basis that I’m not much of an advertisement for Christianity and I’d risk diminishing the brand. But for Eric Pickles, Communities Secretary,… Continue reading

41 Comments
Matt Stone (l) and Trey Parker (r), the creators of Southpark, at a BAFTA gig in Los Angeles. Image: Getty

Scientologists trap us in the closet

12 January 2013 11:17

Whenever I give lectures on my book on censorship – Whaddya mean you haven’t read it? Buy it here at a recession-beating price – I discuss the great issues of… Continue reading

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Ang Lee at the UK premier of Life of Pi. Image: Getty

Life of Pi asks questions of man, not God

8 January 2013 10:00

I’m conducting an experiment: Life of Pi concerns a basic metaphor about faith, how is that metaphor rendered in print and on screen? I’ve re-read the book. I’ve deliberately (at this stage)… Continue reading

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A stained glass window in St. Catherine's Church, Bethlehem. Image: Getty

Discovering poetry: George Herbert’s ‘Prayer’ and the beauty of holiness

7 January 2013 10:00

‘Prayer’ Prayer the Church’s banquet, angels’ age, God’s breath in man returning to his birth, The soul in paraphrase, heart in pilgrimage, The Christian plummet sounding heaven and earth; Engine… Continue reading

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Christians are free to practise their faith openly in this country, but many fear increasing persecution. Picture: Getty

Are Christians being persecuted in Britain?

2 January 2013 17:46

Douglas Murray makes a striking point on his Spectator blog about the violent persecution that many Christians face across the globe, while the Church of England fights over gay marriage… Continue reading

106 Comments
Church

Sorry atheists, organised religion works

2 January 2013 16:13

‘I’m spiritual, not religious’ is something people say to make themselves sound interesting. It doesn’t work. What is intriguing, though, is that, according to this new survey, those who see… Continue reading

122 Comments
Gay Marriage Becomes Legal In The UK

A storm of nonsense: gay marriage opponents lose their wits

10 December 2012 13:01

My word, the latest kerfuffle over gay marriage runs the gamut from dumb to dumber. Here, for instance, is Cristina Odone: He may get away with bullying a great many –… Continue reading

33 Comments
Dr Cosmo Lang, Archbishop of Canterbury, leaves Number 10 Downing Street on 6th December 1936 after meeting with Prime Minister Stanley Baldwin and other ministers to discuss the abdication crisis. Image: Getty.

Cosmo Lang, his part in Edward VIII’s downfall

10 December 2012 9:30

In December 1936, following the Abdication of Edward VIII, a rhyme circulated about the Archbishop of Canterbury, Cosmo Lang: ‘My Lord Archbishop, what a scold you are! And when your… Continue reading

3 Comments
History suggests that if you throw enough bones to this pack of partisan dogs, they'll agree. Image: Getty.

300 years of hating party politics

3 December 2012 9:37

‘Whig and Tory Scratch and Bite’, by Aaron Hill Whig and Tory scratch and bite, Just as hungry dogs we see: Toss a bone ‘twixt two, they fight, Throw a… Continue reading

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