We make these papers available to the wider URC membership asking that people be aware that they are discussion documents and that many changes may be made as a result of Mission Council decisions.

 

Tabled papers 

book imagesA unique resource available as a downloadable pdf. For over 60 years the URC has had a Covenant of Pulpit and Table Fellowship with the Protestant Churches in the Palatinate region of Germany, the ‘Evangelische Kirche der Pfalz’. Drawing on this partnership for the 100 years commemoration of the 1918 Armistice, the URC have been working with our German partners to produce a shared resource, which can be downloaded as two separate booklets.

Entitled ‘One hundred years after the First World War: Looking back, looking forward’, the first booklet contains personal stories, reflections and poems written by British and German contributors. It includes a pilgrimage to the Somme this year undertaken by Pfarrer Martin Henninger from the Pfalz and the Revd David Pickering, Moderator of the Synod in Scotland. Their grandparents served on opposing sides during World War One. An accompanying booklet provides worship material: meditation, prayers, newly written hymns and biblical reflections and closes with a commitment to peace building.

The publication of the resource is timed so that material from the booklets can be used in preparation for remembrance services. We would be grateful if you could publicise the availability of the material, which can be accessed from the home page of the URC website, with an accompanying news story introduction.

We hope this combined British/German initiative will bring a thought provoking dimension to the 100 year commemoration of the end of World War One.

 

 

The Baptist Union of Great Britain has produced a pack of 12 cards – 12 myths of Inter Faith Engagement – that can be used in a variety of settings. They challenge such myths as: 'Inter faith engagement means we sell out on our beliefs and weaken our faith' and ‘There is no reference to Inter faith encounters in the ministry of Jesus’. The cards are an excellent resource for small group discussions and can be downloaded from the Baptist Union website.

In 2017 Churches Together in Britain and Ireland (CTBI) produced a Lent course entitled, ‘Returning Home: Christian Faith in Encounter with Other Faiths’. The resource explores how Christian faith has been deepened and enriched by encounters with people of different religions. It is downloadable from the CTBI website.

In 2011, a group of seasoned interfaith activists and young adult leaders, with a passion for inter faith relationships and culture, launched The Interfaith Observer. It is a free monthly digital journal created ‘to explore interreligious relations and the interfaith movement as a whole’. It can be accessed here.

Useful books for further reference

Christians, Muslims, and Jesus – Mona Siddiqui

A Heart Broken Open – Ray Gaston

Eating Curry for Heaven’s Sake – Barbara Glasson

The Word of God is Not Bound – John Parry

 

Israel Palestine image link

In response to the 2016 General Assembly resolution on Israel and Palestine, mission committee set up an Israel/Palestine task group. The report of its recommendations went to the 2018 General Assembly.

 

Image credit: © Philip Brooks

The most effective inter faith engagement takes place at grass roots level, of which the following represent just a few examples. One of the members of the URC inter faith enabling group, the Revd Dr John Parry is the co-director to the London Inter Faith Centre, which seeks to engage with the reality of individuals and communities ‘living together in a multi-faith society’. In 2018, Grassroots Luton celebrated its 25th anniversary. Grassroots works to empower Luton’s faith and cultural communities. It supports community work in the Beech Hill Bury Park area of Luton through the ministry of Karen Campbell who is the URC Church Related Community Worker based there. In Blackburn, URC church related community worker Mal Breeze is working with two local churches, situated in areas with high Asian populations. Mal reaches out to local mosques and other places of worship to forge closer links. Although misunderstandings and suspicions inevitably exist, the situation is far from the picture of ‘divided communities’ portrayed by the Panorama programme ‘White Fright: Divided Britain’, aired in January 2018.

We want to support and encourage you in this important work and would love to hear your stories of interfaith engagement at a local level. Please contact Carole Sired