|4:45pm||Sunday Organ Recital - Jean-Luc Thellin|
Sheila Cassidy and Frances Young
5 October 2010
For many, the reality of suffering and evil are among the greatest obstacles to faith: how can God allow these terrible things to happen - to innocent people, to the people I love, to me? Natural disasters, human cruelty, life-destroying medical conditions: the reality of apparently meaningless suffering challenges the very idea of a loving, powerful God. Does God not exist, is he powerless, or does he just not care? Can there be any point in suffering? Can it be any part of God’s plan? And why are we exhorted to forgive those who cause us suffering?
Oliver James and Lucy Winkett
12 October 2010
Is love really all we need? Love is the perennial theme, with thousands of songs, poems, films, novels and magazine articles every year based on the assumption that it is what gives meaning to our lives. But have we privatised love? Do we have too narrow a view about it, that it is just romantic or a matter for families? What about caritas - love as a political force, love as a civic virtue, love for the stranger?
Stanley Hauerwas and Frances Dominica
19 October 2010
Death is the great contemporary taboo as well as the great universal. We live in a society where the assumption is that life must be prolonged at any cost, and it’s been said that the new temples in our cities are the great hospitals where we place our faith in death being battled and defeated. The idea of ‘a good death’ sounds like a contradiction in terms. But a few generations back, the idea of a good death was commonplace. Is there an art of dying well? Can we find it again, and if we do, how what it change our lives?
Mark Oakley and Susie Orbach
26 October 2010
So many of us have so much, and yet so few of us seem to be happy. In the UK, we have on average twice as much money as we did fifty years ago, and are no happier, with more mental illness, more alcoholism and more crime than fifty years ago. Depression is often said to have reached epidemic proportions, and happiness seems elusive, or at best transient. What is going on? Are we looking for happiness in the wrong places? What does happiness really mean, and where can we find it?