Category Archives: Poverty

Foodbanks have saved Harvest celebrations from nostalgic irrelevance – by Simon Cansdale

I’ve been doing Harvest assemblies and celebrations for 22 years. I think they’re much richer and more authentic now, and Foodbanks are partly responsible. Nostalgia and guilt Harvest celebrations used to be overshadowed by nostalgia and a vague guilt that … Continue reading

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Prophet warning: a response to Matt Bird – by Justin Thacker

Matt Bird recently wrote an article titled Be for the poor, but not against the rich. According to Matt, God’s material riches of Solomon is evidence that ‘God is not opposed to wealth or the disparity of wealth’. He chastises a … Continue reading

Posted in Poverty, Theology & Church | Tagged | 10 Comments

Why Pope Francis is wrong about begging

This week I was at a church in central London, talking with the minister when a man came to the door asking for help. He explained that he was not from London but his wife had just been discharged from … Continue reading

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The Moorside: Shannon Matthews and the three faces of poverty

Everyone who cares about poverty and community life in the UK should make sure they watch the BBC drama The Moorside.  It is a thoroughly researched and brilliantly acted film about the tragic case of Shannon Matthews, a young girl … Continue reading

Posted in Films & music, Poverty | 4 Comments

Poverty is many things…

Poverty is not entertainment, it’s not noble or romantic. Poverty is… heavy. It’s heavy hearts and heavy legs. It’s sore skin and hollow eyes. It’s upset and downhearted. It’s hunger. Malnourishment. It’s always thinking about the next meal. Poverty is … Continue reading

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‘A thorn in the side of comfortable socialism’: an appreciation of Bob Holman (1936-2016) – by Dave Wiles

I first met Bob Holman in 1973. Following on from a turbulent adolescence I had experienced a radical conversion to Christianity. At the same time Bob was considering his future as Professor of Social Administration at Bath University. With an … Continue reading

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Wallowing in nostalgia or facing up to the challenges of today?

This week I was invited to an event at Parliament to mark the 50th anniversary of the famous film Cathy Come Home in the company of MPs and its director Ken Loach. In 1966, it was watched by over 12 million … Continue reading

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The harrowing reality of UK poverty: ‘I, Daniel Blake’ [Review]

In 1967, Ken Loach’s film Cathy Come Home was a seminal moment in the national consciousness about homelessness. The film led directly to the formation of the national housing charity Shelter. I, Daniel Blake is a Cathy Come Home for our times.  Loach has … Continue reading

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“In reaching out to the lost, I think I have found myself”: Review of ‘The Genius of the Poor’ by Thomas Graham

“Somewhat ironically, my 12-month journey amongst the unlearned and unschooled has taught me more insights and life lessons than all my privileged education had achieved back home.” In 2012, Londoner Thomas Graham arrived in the Philippines expecting to stay one … Continue reading

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We need Sport Relief from corporate injustice – by Andy Turner

So another Sport Relief has come and gone. An unrelenting mash up of fun, sporting heroics, comedy and conviction, highlighting poverty and raising money. The banter, unlikely competitions, silly stunts, and comedy sketches are fun. The heroic feats, especially Eddie Izzard’s incredible … Continue reading

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