Follow by Email

Friday, 20 May 2011

A fascinating Experience at Church

I have said on a few occasions recently that in Britain's individualistic culture a unitarian congregation can be a place where real issues of meaning are considered in community without pre-conceptions and instant solutions. We truly offer an open space.

In this spirit the following blog entry about an experience at Stratford Unitarian Church in East London is powerful and moving.

Wednesday, 18 May 2011

Congratulations on 50th Anniversary of Canadian Unitarian Council

I have offered the congratulations of the General Assembly to the Executive Director of the Canadian Unitarian Council on their formation 50 years ago which will be celebrated at their Annual Conference and Meeting in Toronto later this week.

The links between British and Canadian Unitarians, of course, go back to the mid-19th Century and the bonds of shared ideals, friendship and mutual support sustain our relationship. The Canadian Unitarian Council remains an affiliated body of the General Assembly and that we join together in the International Council of Unitarians and Universalists.

As bodies of a similar size we have much to learn from each other.

Faith charities delivering public services could increase discrimination

Idaho Day - International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia - was yesterday. One challenge is to ensure that LGBTQI people and others are not discriminated against in the delivery of public services as public sector reform proceeds in a period of austerity.

The "Big Society", a policy much promoted by the Government, and built around social action, public service reform and community empowerment, needs to be inclusive. You cannot have a "Big Society" and then implicitly or explictly exclude and marginalise some groups. Unitarians have long worked to promote social justice and led many initiatives for social improvement. We have never applied religious tests to our work.

We need joined up policies. One risk is that encouraging faith groups to be more active in delivery of public services could in some cases lead to a conflict with equality and diversity policy. This was one point I made in a submission on the "Big Society" to the Public Administration Select Committee review that has been picked up by the online edition of the magazine Third Sector.

Monday, 16 May 2011

How the Buddha Solved His Marketing Problem

Visibility is one of the Executive Committee's strategic priorities. This blog raises some relevant points as it is written for online marketeers:

How the Buddha Solved His Marketing Problem

"If you aspire to make a positive difference in the world, by working through your business, your profession, or your nonprofit organisation, ultimately your success comes down to the difference you make to people around you.

So one of the first steps you should take is to find your village of like-minded people — the people you can help and support, and who will help and support you in their turn."