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Tim Farron MPModerators of the United Reformed Church General Assembly joined four other Free Church leaders at three political party conferences this autumn. At each conference, the delegation spoke to MPs and Lords about issues of concern to Christians, prayed with and for political leaders at a dedicated prayer breakfast, and sought to listen and learn from conference delegates. Together, the five leaders represented the URC, the Methodist Church, the Baptist Union of Great Britain, Quakers in Britain and the Salvation Army.

Mr Derek Estill, who attended the Labour conference in Liverpool, said that the delegation ‘demonstrated unity across our various denominations’. The Revd Nigel Uden, who was part of the delegation to the Conservative Party conference in Birmingham, said: ‘It was especially significant to be part of bringing into creative dialogue our various perspectives on topics that too often can mar abundant life – not least migration, climate change and poverty.’ 

Read more: Church leader delegation at political party conferences

Hush Naidoo UnsplashAll the ‘Anonymous’ 12-step programmes begin by helping an addict get off – and stay off – the substance, or the behaviour, which has damaged them, their families and their worlds. But after putting down the drugs or the drink or the whatever, then the addict must tackle is his or her resentments.  Jesus is helpful on that one. Over and over again.

Read more: ‘The Great Big Wrong’ a poem by URC performance-poet Lucy Berry

Writing prayersHave you ever picked up a copy of the United Reformed Church’s (URC) prayer handbook and thought you could write prayers just as good as, or maybe better than, these published within it? If so, now’s your chance to put pen to paper and write a prayer or two, to three or four, for the 2020 Prayer Handbook – Prayers from the Heart.

Incoming editors, Ian Fosten and Karen Campbell, are keen to build on the work of Richard Church and Nathan Eddy, editors of the past three editions of the prayer handbook, and widen its authorship. Prayer writers from every part of the denomination – and beyond – are invited to submit prayers for the 2020 edition. 

Read more: Have you ever wanted to write for the prayer handbook?

news banner man holding heart credit Nick Fewings UnsplashUK churches have welcomed a report calling for radical economic change.

Prosperity and Justice: A plan for a new economy concludes the work of the Institute for Public Policy Research Commission on Economic Justice which has analysed every aspect of the UK economy since autumn 2016.

The report argues that the economy is not working for millions of people and needs fundamental reform.

Read more: Churches endorse 'Prosperity and Justice' report

News banner Joan ColwellThis week a group of volunteers in Warrington had their first look at Faith-filled Life – the first stream of the Stepwise programme – which they are now ready to begin.

Stepwise is a little different from previous discipleship programmes; designed for the way we live and learn now, participants begin with individual activities online as they prepare for later group discussion. And, after meeting with their local group for shared activities, they can pursue in greater depth the topics that particularly interest them through further online study, including video and audio materials.

Read more: Stepwise is stepping out …