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Britain 2015 – if David Cameron is still @Number10gov June 25, 2012

Posted by Phil Groom in Current Affairs, Life.
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IF YOU’RE A YOUNG PERSON in Britain today, here’s how your future’s looking:

Leave school at 16 or 18 because you can’t afford higher education…
Get a low-end minimum-wage job if you’re lucky…
Maybe earn enough to rent somewhere with some mates…

Receive a pay cut because the government has scrapped the minimum wage
» or get fired for no reason because the government has scrapped employee rights
» or get made redundant because the company goes bust

Now you’ve got no money to pay the rent
» your mates can’t subsidise you
» housing benefit has been scrapped for under-25s
» your parents don’t want you back

Hello cardboard box in an alleyway at night, fight for a Big Issue pitch by day.

If you survive, turn 25 …

… by which time housing benefit for under-35s has been scrapped…

Welcome to the Tory scrapheap, if you live that long — and if you live longer, don’t even think about collecting a pension: long before you reach 68, pension age will be 75; and by the time you reach 75, it’ll be 90.

Apathy and indifference are no longer an option: if you’re old enough to vote by the time of the next General Election in 2015, use that vote or lose everything.

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The Church of England and the Question of Freedom: Bishop Tim Ellis: Not in my name? June 13, 2012

Posted by Phil Groom in Christianity, Church, Current Affairs.
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AN EXCELLENT and challenging post from Bishop Tim Ellis of Grantham this afternoon, responding to the Church of England’s recent statement opposing equal marriage, Not in my name?

He writes:

… the Church of England is not like the Roman Catholic Church or other ecclesial bodies in having a central majisterium which speaks authoritatively for the Church on any given matter. So, the Church of England has never been able to come up with the ‘party line’ about contraception, for instance, in the way that the Church of Rome has. Despite the countless people who ignore the injunction, the fact still remains that to be a Catholic is not to be a user of contraceptives. Still less is the Church of England like a political party with a manifesto that needs to be publicly shared by all adherents regardless of private belief. The religious life within the Church of England should not be about conformity to centrally created opinions at all costs-as the ‘voice of the institution’-but more ‘pilgrimaging’ together within the complexities and dilemmas of life under the refreshing and renewing guidance of the Holy Spirit. The ability for the Church in England to see things differently and to honour diversity was a hard won freedom at the time of the Reformation in the 15th and 16th centuries when folk died for the right to see the Mass, Baptism, the Bible and many other matters of the soul from different perspectives from those handed down through the, then, closely held traditions of the Church. It is this freedom of interpretation and of the need for structural adjustment to changing circumstances that has allowed our Church to leave many things to the individual’s conscience but also to make serious advancements such as the ordination of women to the priesthood. When we have veered from this freedom we have, for instance, caused ourselves the embarrassment of condemning Darwin. At the heart of this very attractive aspect of the Church of England’s life is the knowledge that we are a diverse and highly inclusive Church from which there can be no unified voice or opinion in these matters, and it this aspect of our Church that has kept me faithful to Anglicanism all my life.

So, I am forced to say that those of my colleagues who have spoken out on same-sex marriage do not speak for me and neither, I dare to say, do they speak for the Church of England-they are rehearsing their own opinions.

Bishop Tim, I salute you.

Jubilee Weekend in Langford June 1, 2012

Posted by Phil Groom in Photos.
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Jubilee Weekend in Langford

Jubilee Weekend in Langford

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