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London, United Kingdom




The religious and ethical news of the week, regularly presented by Edward Stourton.




Religious education; Ahmad Nawaz; Sikhs on the census

New research suggests that a quarter of England's secondary schools are not offering Religious Education, despite the fact that it is a legal obligation to do so. Alex Strangways-Booth reports. This week, Israel's Supreme Court decided that ultra-Orthodox Jews are no longer exempt from military service. Edward explores the importance of this decision. Bob Walker has been to meet monks from Tibet currently touring the UK. It has been reported this week that 80% of calls to the police are not...

Duration: 00:43:46

Disestablishment, Rohingyas and Detention Centres

After 9 staff have been suspended following an edition of Panorama this week on the Immigration Removal Centre, Brook House, William talks to Rev Nathan Ward about his experience of working at this and another detention centre. The American Catholic Church hits back at Steve Bannon after he questioned their motives for defending DACA, the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals programme, which President Trump has announced he is closing. Middle East Correspondent Yolande Knell tells...

Duration: 00:43:53

Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O'Connor remembered, Religion and fostering, Houston Floods

Edward Stourton looks back on the life of Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O'Connor and speaks to his successor as Archbishop of Westminster, Cardinal Vincent Nichols. Following the row about the reporting of a fostering case involving Muslim carers this week, Kevin Bocquet explores the issues surrounding religious fostering and adoption. Father David Bergeron from the Catholic Charismatic Centre in Houston explains the impact of the floods on the lives of his community in the aftermath of Hurricane...

Duration: 00:43:59

Religion and Artificial Intelligence

This week more than 100 of the world's top robotics experts wrote to the UN calling for a ban on the development of "killer robots" and the tech entrepreneur Elon Musk tweeted that artificial intelligence safety was 'vastly more a risk than North Korea'. AI already changing our lives; from driver-less cars to caring for the elderly. Should the technology that drives AI be designed with a set of moral and ethical codes and how should it be regulated? Bob Walker reports from the Sheffield...

Duration: 00:43:43

'Reformation Day' at The Proms; Moral equivalence; Why are Australian priests facing jail?

Professor John Butt tells William Crawley about the three concerts he has curated for 'Reformation Day' at The Proms. One of the chaplains at Hospital Del Mar in Barcelona, describes the mood in the city following this week's terrorist attack. John Rutter explains why he is unhappy that the church of St Sepulchre's in London, the resting place of The Proms founder Sir Henry Moor, has announced a ban on bookings from classical musicians. In the context of Donald Trump's remarks about the...

Duration: 00:43:45

Tackling holiday hunger; Persecution of modern day 'witches'; Jerusalem's tattoo parlour

In a back alley of Jerusalem, pilgrims can find what's believed to be the world's oldest tattoo parlour. Yolande Knell meets Anton and Wassim who are continuing a family business that's been passed from one generation to the next. When schools close for holidays a million children stop receiving free school meals. Kevin Bocquet reports from a faith based project in Middlesborough that provides food for dozens of children over the summer. William Crawley hears from Frank Field MP who plans...

Duration: 00:44:11

Nuns fighting fracking; Forced marriage; Food safety post-Brexit

The Bishop of St Albans, the Rt Rev Dr Alan Smith, and Farming Minister George Eustice discuss food safety in the light of the Brexit negotiations. Martin Bashir talks to the Archbishop of Canterbury and his Ugandan counterpart - Stanley Ntagali - about the refugee crisis in Uganda caused by people fleeing from the fighting in South Sudan. The Ugandan Archbishop also explains his opposition to same-sex relationships. An order of American nuns (the Adorers of the Blood of Christ) are in a...

Duration: 00:43:49

Jehovah's Witness, Trafficking, Arts & Craft Stained Glass

Trevor Barnes finishes his short series on stained glass by talking to Peter Cormack on how glass artists transformed the aesthetics and production of stained glass in Britain and America during the Arts and Crafts period. The Charity Commission have published a critical report into how the Jehovah's Witnesses managed allegations of child sex abuse at the Manchester New Moston congregation. Kathleen Hallisey a lawyer for survivors and Harvey Grenville, Head of Investigations and...

Duration: 00:43:46

A priest with AIDS; The churches and mosques supporting Grenfell; Canterbury's medieval glass

It's 50 years since homosexual acts were partially decriminalised in England and Wales. To mark the anniversary, Rosemary Bailey has rereleased the biography of her brother Simon. He was a gay priest in the Church of England and died from AIDS in 1995. In the aftermath of the Grenfell fire, local churches and mosques rallied to support the community. They continue to help, mediating between residents and the authorities. The Rev Mike Long from Notting Hill Methodist Church and Abdurahman...

Duration: 00:44:55

Child marriage in the USA, Iona, Contemporary stained glass

In the first of a three part series, Trevor Barnes explores the history, art and religion behind some of the stained glass windows in the cathedrals and churches of the UK. William Crawley speaks to Guli Francis-Dehqani, who fled Iran at the age of 14 with her family she has been named the first Bishop of Loughborough. The Court of Appeal is considering whether gender segregation in a state-funded Islamic school in Birmingham amounts to unlawful discrimination against girls Amina Lone and...

Duration: 00:43:59

Church safeguarding under scrutiny, Chaplains to the sea, Allotments

Sunday this weekend is presented by William Crawley. The Church of England and the Methodist Church in Britain are considering proposals that would bring them into a new relationship of full communion, after 200 years of formal separation. What would John Wesley think? Warwickshire allotment holders are up in arms about a proposal from Coventry diocese to sell off their land. Historian Andrew Bradstock finds resonances between their battle and that of the 17th century Diggers led by...

Duration: 00:43:59

The first Archbishop of New York, Muslim leadership, Angels

The Angel World Summit took place this weekend - bringing together angel experts and people who wish to deepen their connection with angels. The psychotherapist Mark Vernon, discusses the history and fascination of angels with Edward Stourton. A group of church leaders in Blackpool are working with the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association on an event at Winter Gardens next year at which Billy Graham's son Franklin will be speaking. Nina Parker, Co-pastor of Liberty Church in Blackpool,...

Duration: 00:43:35

Church abuse review; Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks; Wi-Fi on church spires

In some rural areas, church spires are offering a solution to deliver high speed reliable wireless broadband internet access to local communities. Rosie Dawson reports from the Yorkshire Dales. Rabbi Lord Sacks is participating in the Thatcher Conference on Security on 27 June in London. He talks to Edward about what values he thinks the West should stand for and why he calls the idea of global fragmentation 'cultural climate change'. Jayne Ozanne, a senior Anglican, is calling on the...

Duration: 00:44:02

Community response to Grenfell Tower; First female Sikh MP; African and Caribbean war memorial

A memorial to commemorate service men and women from Africa and the Caribbean is to be unveiled in Brixton. Trevor Barnes reports on their contribution during two World Wars and the campaign to build the memorial. William speaks to Rev Dr Alan Everett from St Clements Church and Lotifa Begum from Islamic Relief about their work helping and counselling residents in the community in West London since the fire at Grenfell Tower. Emily Buchanan talks to Christian Malanga, the President of the...

Duration: 00:43:47

Same-sex marriage in Scotland; Imams refuse to perform funeral prayers; BBC Music Day

The Scottish Episcopal Church has voted to allow their ministers to hold same-sex marriages. Bishop David Chillingworth tells Edward why they changed the Marriage Canon. In response to this decision the conservative Anglican group GAFCON announced that Canon Andy Lines will become their 'Missionary Bishop'. He tells Edward about his new role while Church of England Bishop, Graham Kings considers the impact of both decisions on the Anglican church. The former President of the Irish...

Duration: 00:43:38

London terror attack, US climate deal exit, Liverpool cathedral golden jubilee

In the aftermath of the London terror attack, Emily Buchanan talks to Very Rev Andrew Nunn, Dean of Southwark Cathedral and to Haras Rafiq, CEO of Quilliam, a counter-extremist organisation. Following President Trump's announcement that the United States is to pull out of the 2015 Paris climate agreement, Emily Buchanan hears from the journalist Sarah Posner, on the religious reaction in the US; and from the former Bishop of Liverpool James Jones, who spent a decade trying to persuade US...

Duration: 00:40:07

Faith response to the Manchester attack; Oscar Romero case reopened; 98-year-old bell ringer

Chris Anthony & Muhammad Hussain talk to Martin Bashir about why they are taking part in the Great Manchester run on Sunday and what it means to them in the light of Monday's attack at the Manchester Arena. After it became known that the bomber had worshipped at Didsbury Mosque the media descended and the mosque had to defend its reputation. Kevin Bocquet meets some of its leaders. As the case was reopened this week into the murder of Blessed Oscar Romero after almost 40 years ago, Martin...

Duration: 00:44:07

Green pilgrimage; President Trump heads to Rome; Islam's 'instant divorce'

Each year thousands of pilgrims walk The Camino de Santiago and new routes are opening across the UK. As Trevor Barnes reports, the popularity of pilgrimage brings a raft of environmental challenges. Pope Francis meets President Trump on Wednesday morning at the Apostolic Palace. Previously, the Pope has criticised the President's views on climate change and illegal immigration. Thomas Reese from the National Catholic Reporter discusses with Edward the likely mood of the meeting. Glasgow...

Duration: 00:43:59

'Breakaway' Anglican church, Humanist weddings, Pope in Fatima

Does the consecration of an Anglican Bishop in England by a breakaway South African Church make an eventual schism over the issue of homosexuality inevitable? Edward Stourton explores the arguments with Gavin Ashenden, an Anglican priest who left the Church of England earlier in the year, and Anglican theologian Ian Paul. A new report provides the most detailed analysis yet about the make-up of nearly half the adult population in Britain who describe themselves as non-religious. Author of...

Duration: 00:43:50

Archbishop of Canterbury in the Middle East, Mindfulness in School, Benedictine Monks and Diet

A new study suggest medieval Benedictine Monks aided the evolution of the modern chicken because of their dietary rules discouraging the consumption of four-legged animals. Edward talks to the author, Anders Erikson and Dr Andrew Jotiscky, from the University of London The Archbishop of Canterbury is half way through a twelve day trip to the Middle East. During a visit to a refugee camp in Jordan he said Christians in the region "are the past, they are the present and they must be the...

Duration: 00:43:57

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