Feast or Famine? How the Gospel challenges austerity

feast or famineEditor: Simon Barrow
ISBN: 978-0-232-53261-6
Date: 2017
Price: £5.99
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Keeping Lent and Easter

Author: Leigh Hatts
ISBN:  978-0-232-53337-8
Date: 2017
Price: £9.99
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10% off price: £9.00 (+P&P)
Both books published by Darton, Longman and Todd 

Last year I reviewed a collection of essays edited by Virginia Moffatt1, mostly written by people linked to the think-tank Ekklesia. Its director, Simon Barrow, has now brought out an excellent Lent course. This is designed to cover five weeks, comprising for each week Bible readings, prayers, a reflection by a particular writer, together with discussion and action points. Often Lent courses and Lent books are rather 'safe', seldom designed to shock or cause controversy. What is refreshing about this course is that it isn't safe. It focuses on a key controversial issue in contemporary Britain, austerity. Since the word has strong religious overtones, some people might think that Christians will view positively this characteristic of recent government economic policy.  This course challenges such a view and explores the inadequacy of policies which rest on falsehood. So Barrow writes in the introduction to the course: 'The biggest lie of and about austerity is that 'there's not enough money'. That is untrue. We live in a world, gifted by God, as Christians say, which has more than enough resources to sustain us - if we look after it, share it, and care for one another well. In fact it is not austerity but generosity which makes the world go round, and when we realise this we can genuinely begin to live well and to deconstruct the myths around the idea that the problem we face is a shortage which can only be addressed by cutting back.' (pp. 21-22).

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