Start building communities in schools | Letter


Gregory Quiery is right when paying tribute to cross-community holidays hosting Catholic and Protestant children in Northern Ireland during the 1970s (Letters, 17 June). More recently, I remember attending a tea party for children who had just been on such a holiday in the US. In talking to their parents there were adults who had … Read more

York Minster faces deficit of £2.3m after Covid closures in 2020


York Minster is facing up to the catastrophic impact of the pandemic on its finances after recording a £2.3m deficit last year. Income at the cathedral plummeted from a surplus of £332,000 in 2019 due to low visitor numbers caused by the pandemic, according to the minster’s recently published accounts for the year to 31 … Read more

C of E investigates possible slave trade origins of £9.2bn fund


The Church of England is to investigate possible slave trade links to an 18th-century endowment that has grown into a £9.2bn investment fund supporting parishes and cathedrals across the country. Queen Anne’s Bounty, a sum of money set aside to augment the incomes of poor clergy in 1704, could present a “reputational risk”, said the … Read more

Battle for tranquillity amid the shooting | Letter


Samye Ling is not the only religious site to be desecrated by grouse slaughter (Buddhist monastery in Scotland calls for firearms exclusion zone, 11 June). Before lockdown I visited Pennant Melangell, a medieval shrine in a small church amid a circle of yews, a Christian foundation of the seventh century, still a place for pilgrimage … Read more

Two leaders of very different Catholic values | Letters


I suspect that many left-leaning Roman Catholics regard the fact that Boris Johnson is Britain’s first Catholic prime minister as more a matter of regret than pride, and certainly not “a watershed moment” for the nation’s Catholics, as Catherine Pepinster suggests (A Catholic prime minister in No 10 is a watershed moment, 11 June). Nor … Read more

A Catholic prime minister in No 10 is a watershed moment | Catherine Pepinster


There’s a quip that both Boris Johnson and David Cameron have used – one that shows they are aware of the pitfalls of signing up to a specific religion in secular Britain while also wanting to keep co-religionists on side. Both have said that their Christian faith is a bit like the signal for Magic … Read more

Buddhist monastery in Scotland calls for firearms exclusion zone


When the gunfire starts it is like a thunderclap, the monks and nuns explain, and the sound reverberates up the valley. During the game shooting season, it is not unusual for avian casualties to land within the grounds of Samye Ling, the largest Tibetan Buddhist temple in western Europe. Tame ducks who have sought refuge … Read more

C of E bishop backs prosecution of those who defy ‘gay conversion’ ban


Faith leaders should face prosecution if they fail to comply with the government’s promised ban on so-called gay conversion practices, a senior bishop in the Church of England has said. David Walker, the bishop of Manchester, told the Guardian: “Where activity has harmed someone, the person who has caused the harm should face prosecution.” That … Read more

‘Is this about that article?’ Didsbury locals dismiss ‘no-go areas’ claims


Walking down Burton Road on Monday afternoon, it is hard not to wonder if another Didsbury exists elsewhere after a report at the weekend described “no-go areas” where white people fear the threat of religious violence. The Mail Online report claimed there were a number of towns with no-go areas for white people, and that … Read more

Scotland’s ‘cradle of Christianity’ on Iona is saved by small mercies


A Christian community on a tiny Hebridean island which for centuries has attracted pilgrims from all over the world will reopen on Monday after a mammoth campaign raised £3.75m to save it from closure. The Iona community, centred on a Benedictine abbey in whose grounds John Smith, the late Labour leader, is buried, has spent … Read more