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REVELATIONS ON ALPHA

As a person who many years ago led a couple of Alpha courses, I watched Channel 4’s documentary Revelations: How to Find God (Sunday, June 28th, 7pm) with great interest.

In the introductory spiel, the voice-over informed us that; ‘Alpha is the world’s most successful scheme to convert agnostics to Christianity…. Churches everywhere buy the study pack and off they go…. It sounds impossible, but over ten Tuesday evenings and a weekend away, the Alpha Course routinely transforms unbelievers into Christians’. According to the programme, the course, (described as originating with Nicky Gumbel), has had around two million takers in Britain so far and approximately one in eight of them have ‘found God’. Read more »

Superstition

My wife, Pam and I, have just returned from holiday in the Mediterranean. During the course of our time away, we visited various places of worship in different areas and I was shocked anew at the levels of superstition surrounding the Christian faith which still exist in some parts of the world. In one place, we visited a church dedicated to – and containing the remains of – a saint who is believed to still tramp the streets of the town at night (presumably trying to do some good). For this reason, each year, his body is removed from the silver casket in which it is held, given new shoes to replace the dusty worn ones, and dressed in new clothes. Thus regaled, the five hundred year old corpse is carried around the streets where the local worshippers turn out and apparently have ‘a bit of a do’. Read more »

The Gentle Art of Self Perpetuation

Have you ever wondered whether our government exists to serve us or itself? Do the politicians really need us, the people out here in the real world? Or is all that bureaucracy and red tape a self perpetuating machine? ‘We’re busy’ it seems to say, ‘with expenses to claim and bankers to pay; we don’t have much time to bother with you.’ Sometimes, the government seems to be simply running… the government. Read more »

CHRISTIANITY: A HISTORY? (Again)

Yes, folks, once again I’m droning on about Channel 4 and their propensity for making biased documentaries. This time, it’s another episode of Christianity: a History (Channel 4, 7pm, Sunday Feb 22, 2009). The programme, subtitled: God and the Scientists was presented by Oxford neurobiologist, Colin Blakemore. Blakemore began by telling us that he doesn’t believe in God. One immediately wondered what kind of a history of Christianity was likely to be presented by an atheist? Well, I’ll tell you what kind; a very selective and biased one. Read more »

Would You Like Me to Pray For You?

The story concerning the Community Nurse, Caroline Petrie, has been interesting to follow. It’s been typical of the current anti-Christian feeling which seems to be growing in our society. The National Secular Society (www.secularism.org.uk/praying-nurse-offered-her-job-ba.html) has a piece on their website by president, Terry Sanderson, on the story. They seem to be happy that Ms Petrie can return to work, just as long as she keeps quiet about her faith and doesn’t offer to pray for anyone else. The article ends with the words; ‘The rules are there to curb any such people going into the homes of their patients and foisting unwanted religious rituals on to them.’ Read more »

Christianity: a History

Last night (7pm, 11th Jan 2009), I sat down to watch TV and was surprised (not having looked at the programme guide) to find a new series just beginning entitled: Christianity: a History. The programme was presented by Howard Jacobson who is Jewish, and this first programme in the series was to be his take on the Christian faith. Read more »