Bishop issues ‘Salisbury Declaration’
THE Bishop of Salisbury, the Rt Revd Nicholas Holtam, has issued a “Salisbury Declaration” of hope in his Christmas card after a year when the city found itself caught up in the murky world of international espionage and suspected assassination. Bishop Holtam wrote: “Love, light, and life will triumph after a difficult year for his Cathedral City.” The declaration reads: “For Salisbury, 2018 has been a difficult year. We have been reminded of our shared vulnerability and the interconnectedness of world events. . . We pray for the life and soul of our cathedral city, that it will prosper and be a beacon of Christian values.”
Shell announces pay move on climate targets
SHELL has announced plans to set carbon-emission targets next year and link these to executive pay, becoming the first energy company to do this. The move was announced on Monday, and followed pressure from investors, including the Church of England Pensions Board. The Director of Ethics and Engagement for the Pensions Board, Adam Matthews, was one of the leaders of the investor engagement with Shell, on behalf of the Climate Action 100+ initiative. He said: “This joint statement is the first of its kind, it sets a benchmark for the rest of the oil and gas sector and shows the benefit of engagement - aligning institutional investors’ long-term interests with Shell’s desire to be at the forefront of the energy transition.”
Guidance on out-of-school groups drafted
A DRAFT document, Out-of-school Settings: Voluntary safeguarding code of practice, was published by the Department for Education on Sunday, and is out for consultation until 24 February next year. It sets out ten questions that parents should be asking providers, such as the Scouts and Guiding; open-access youth-work providers; and educational religious settings, such as Sunday schools. Thirtyone:eight, a Christian safeguarding charity, welcomed the draft code of practice. “We believe it clearly lays out a best-practice framework which is fully in line with what we would expect,” its chief executive, Justin Humphreys, said.
Welcome for those feeling ‘blue’
CHURCHES in Guildford diocese are opening their doors to anyone alone or in need of support this Christmas. All Saints’, Little Bookham, which is participating, has planned a “Blue Christmas” service on 20 December aimed at those who are not looking forward to Christmas for any reason. On Christmas Day, Footsteps drop-in centre in the centre of Guildford will provide shelter and a Christmas meal for needy and homeless people.
No tell-by date on Santa, say parents
ALMOST half UK parents would never tell their child the truth about Father Christmas, given the choice, a survey by the parenting resource Families Online suggests. Forty-seven per cent of the parents included in the survey were trying to keep the magic alive for as long as possible, while 11 per cent said they would feel the need to reveal the truth before their child turned seven. Just three per cent of parents would avoid the scenario altogether and tell their child before the age of four.