An Asian Christian woman living in London blogging about the everyday issues of religion

Sunday, 22 February 2015

A Simple Explanation of What Lent is About

The following was printed in the prayer sheet at Church today and I think it's the most succinct and simple explanation that I have ever seen on what Lent is about:

Lent is the period during which we prepared for Easter. 
At this time we are encouraged to practice self-examination, 
penitence, self-denial, study and generous giving
 to those in need. 

I have found a website that lists prayers for the whole Lent period. This is today's prayer.

Lord God, 
you who breathed the spirit of life within me.
Draw out of me the light and life you created.
Help me to find my way back to you.
Help me to use my life to reflect your glory
and to serve others
as your son Jesus did.

Tuesday, 10 February 2015

CoE Touched By HSBC Scandal

Noam Chomsky Quotes Moral Agent

The long arm of Capitalism has managed to pull the CoE into the scandalous immorality of tax evasion perpetrated by HSBC. The Guardian newspaper yesterday broke the story about how the Swiss branch of HSBC was helping rich people from, among many countries, the UK evade tax. The bank under declared accounts which meant that 7,000 wealthy British people were allowed to evade tax that, collectively, amounted to £27.1 billion. 

Central to this activity is a man called Lord Steven Green. He was in charge of HSBC private banking and later became the Chief Executive. Crucially, Green was in charge of the bank during the years when tax avoidance was a rampant activity. This is the part that will be of interest to Christians. He is an ordained CoE minister and published a book called 'Good Value: Reflections on Money, Morality and an Uncertain World'. I am sure that the irony of the inclusion of the word 'morality' in the title will not escape you. The book actually contains the line and the advice to go beyond "what you can get away with" in the context of how business leaders should legally and ethically behave. 

I wonder how many public service people (doctors, nurses) could have been employed with the money lost? 
I wonder how many firemen who have lost their jobs could have stayed employed at their now closed firestations? 
I wonder how many A&Es could have provided better services?

Sunday, 1 February 2015

Are Women More Religious?

The British population expert, Professor David Boas, undertook a survey of 9,000 people and found that 34% of women are either atheists or agnostics, compared to 54% of men. Professor Boas does not offer any reasons as to why a big gap exists between men and women when it comes to religious belief.

Deborah Orr, writing in The Guardian argues that women are more likely to see themselves as being a part of a much bigger plan, are more open-minded, more imaginative and are more likely to think that anything beyond their comprehension can still have value. It is worth reading her article especially on her conclusions.

I do notice that more women than men attend church on a Sunday and it is the women who tend to volunteer on a regular basis. Men may take on the one-off jobs of organising an event or shifting/moving furniture but the women have proven to be a sustained and steady stream of help to draw from. In my humble opinion this is because women have a wider sense of what stewardship involves. Arranging flowers, handing out the service sheets on Sunday and helping out with the offering maybe administrative tasks needed to keep the church going but women place another dimension to these tasks and it is stewardship.

From a personal point of view, as a mother, I wanted my daughter to grow up in a religious space which would imbue her with values and a belief system. Deborah Orr finishes off her article by stating that women believe in God because they can't believe in football. That maybe so but I don't see any comparison between anything on earth that can inspire hope and listen to your woes and worries like God does.