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Church Times webinar series to examine faith at ballot box on 4 July

24 May 2024

Alamy

A polling station sign inside the churchyard of St Mark’s, Wimbledon

A polling station sign inside the churchyard of St Mark’s, Wimbledon

A TWO-PART Church Times webinar series will help voters to explore some of the issues before they go to the ballot box on 4 July.

The Power and The Glory? Talking Politics in a General Election Year, a joint project with Modern Church, brings together panels of experts in the field of political theology to discuss some of the issues at stake.

The first webinar, A Political Faith?, on Monday 3 June, will offer the chance to reflect on what can be learnt from the history of political theology, and to think about how churches can bring their influence to bear on those who hold power.

The panel will be chaired by the Professor Emeritus of Practical Theology at the University of Chester, Dr Elaine Graham, who is the Hon. Canon Theologian of Chester Cathedral and chairs the trustees of Modern Church.

Her guests are Min Shermara Fletcher-Hoyte, National Principal Officer for Pentecostal, Charismatic and Multi-Cultural relations at Churches Together in England; Dr Jenny Leith, author of Political Formation: Being formed by the Spirit in Church and world (Books, 23 June 2023); and Professor Graeme Smith, the programme leader for the Postgraduate Programmes in Theology, Imagination and Culture at Sarum College, Salisbury, and a former Professor of Public Theology at the University of Chichester. He is the founder editor of the international journal Political Theology.

The second webinar, a week later, on Monday 10 June, will explore the power of voting — and the power beyond. The panellists are Jonathan Cox OBE, Deputy Director of Citizens UK; the Revd Tim Norwood, the Church of England’s National Ecumenical Officer; and Bishop Mike Royal, General Secretary of Churches Together in England.

Once more under the chairmanship of Professor Graham, this panel will explore how and why Christians might encourage voter registration and turnout. The panellists will offer ways in which churches might provide a forum for questioning and challenging parliamentary candidates. Finally, the session will explore how Christian communities can express active citizenship, working with others to make a positive difference to local communities.

Tickets to each webinar cost £10, or £5 for Church Times subscribers. See www.churchtimes.co.uk/events or phone 01603 785905.

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