MA Bursaries Engaging in postgraduate education is expensive but essential for human development. This is especially difficult for students from the global south but also for home students. Our innovative and flexible modes of delivery could enable a greater number of students to gain qualifications and serve others in their communities. We are appealing for both match funding and full bursaries. £4,000 will match fund the MA programme for a home student. £8,000 will match fund the MA programme for an international student Nalini Nathan received a bursary to become the Institute’s first graduate from the Anglia Ruskin University [...]
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So far MBIT Admin has created 26 blog entries.
After a bad morning, bad in every sense, It was good to walk again in fields of green, to take in dappled sunlight in the shaded lanes To be soothed by the glide of a brace of swans in a brook. Then through a curved gate to a grassy plain flanked by horse chestnut trees,in flower, I was not prepared for the encounter. You dropped in altitude, majestically beautiful, your breast aglow. Dark wings indented and streaked with white. You eyed me with great interest, circled low for seconds long. In that moment we made bargain and a [...]
Surprise Training When you say “Surprise!”, everyone reacts differently. For some, it is something nice to look forward to, for others it is an unpleasant experience, an uncontrollable element that breaks into your life. But one thing is always the same – it is not possible to train for it, because of the essence of its unpredictability. That is why we often find ourselves in situations where we are surprised, whether it is a good/bad grade at school, the unexpected behaviour of a person close to us or the loss of something important. And I’d like to talk a [...]
Interconnectedness In my retirement, I have been blessed by the companionship of many people, mostly women who are finding creative ways of processing through this time of social distancing. Some are introverts and find it a welcome gift of extra time to paint and to write; others are coordinating conference calls and numerous screen-time gatherings to combat the quiet. One of these friends is a clinical social worker who finds her spiritual strength sustained by writing poetry, especially now in between teletherapy sessions. A new poem of hers arrived in my email inbox on the same afternoon as I [...]
Bossy Angels Have you noticed how bossy angels are? In today’s reading from Acts 8, there is Philip minding his own business, when along comes an angel who imperiously demands that he gets up and goes, and so Philip does and look what happened next... In Scripture, all the angels greet with an instruction: ‘Go!’ ‘Get up!’ ‘Do not be afraid!’ even ‘Hail!’ They immediately get our attention. I get the feeling, and you can see it in the grin on the angel’s face in the picture, that angels do not take no for an answer. They will wait [...]
Sacrifice – God so loved the world I started writing this blog a while ago, following an excellent seminar by Professor Susan Docherty at the Margaret Beaufort Institute, looking at the rewritings of the Old Testament. This was an excellent introduction to the other literature that has been discovered that enriches and expands our understanding of the Old Testament. One of the texts we looked at tackled that difficult and complex text where Abraham to all intents and purposes seems to be wholly set on sacrificing his own son. The wonderings and discussion in the seminar set me thinking [...]
Theology, Creativity and the Arts Postgraduate Study Day It can feel quite life affirming when a theme or themes evolve from a conference. The conference title 'Theology, Creativity and the Arts PG Study Day' told us something of the area but, being broad, you couldn't predict a direction. Margaret Beaufort Institute provided an ideal setting for friendly and informative interaction with a stroll across their delightful garden between one talk and another. The presentations were parallel so no delegate heard them all. I just aim here to give a feel for a handful of the talks with particular focus [...]
An Upside Down Weekend This weekend’s readings for Christ the King seem to be upside down. We don’t usually celebrate kingship by focusing on torture, crucifixion, mocking, jeering, offering vinegar or sour wine and abusing our King as detailed in today’s Gospel. Usually kingship is associated with fine clothes, gold, rich wines, rich food and wealth. So just what is going on here? It is no accident that the liturgists ask us to remember Christ’s death as we celebrate this feast of kingship, for Christ is inviting us into a very different kind of kingdom. It is a kingdom [...]
Why the Body Needs Plato (and Plato Needs the Body) It’s all Plato’s fault. Once he was the power behind the throne of Christian theology, with his heavenly world of ideas/perfect forms and a Father God creator. The medieval Scholastics started to pull away when they adopted more down-to-earth Aristotle. But Aquinas continued to make use of Platonism (such as for his doctrine of participation), as did later Christian thinkers. It was only in the twentieth century that the rebellion really got going, and that partly due to pressure from outside Christian theology: Karl Popper famously argued that Plato's [...]
The Kingdom of God I’ve taken to using the Pray as you Go app – it helps to hear the Gospel rather than read it for oneself. The trouble is, as well as getting the reading aloud, questions are posed about it which can be more or less helpful. Today’s questions were not helpful, but they did inspire me to write this as a result, so maybe they did what they were meant to do after all. The reading was Luke 19:11–36, that odd parable about the Kingdom of God, where there is the harsh and judgemental ruler who [...]