What we've been reading this weekNick Spencer on the electionContacting election candidatesHow to Show Up Snap Election - How to respond?Thoughts from a Broom CupboardDifficulties getting to the Polling Station?Can’t be bothered to vote? Some reasons why you should….Politics is in need of incarnation, not just demonstration10 Reasons Christians Should Vote in the ElectionsThe election as an opportunityPolitics is dead...When praying for your leaders feels tough...'THOSE WHO SHOW UP' - Every church leader should read this book! If you care about your neighbour, you care about politicsDoes politics really matter?Why the Catholic Church calls us to be "active citizens"Serving God On the Inside and On the OutsideWho would Jesus vote for?5 reasons Christians don't get involved in politicsShifting views on politics from an Ethiopian immigrantOne student's u-turn on politicsTime to get engaged!A call for students to have a go!

What we've been reading this week

A sneaky peak at what we’ve been reading (and watching) in the Christians in Politics office this week:

  • In a  thought provoking article, Nick Spencer from Theos critiques the manner in which this election campaign has been conducted. Our initial thoughts on how to respond to the quality of the debate is here.

  • When considering who to vote for, Paul Woolley from the BIble Society helpfully asks the question: 'What is Government for?' In considering this from a Biblical perspective, he includes restraining wrongdoing and promoting wellbeing. Read more here.

  • Danny Webster from the Evangelical Alliance asks tough questions about the cessation of campaigning in the wake of the Manchester bombing. He suggests that if the prospect of political debate seemed so distasteful in the days following the attack, then maybe we need to 'wake up, pay attention and do politics better'.  He argues that it is not disagreement  per se that is the problem, but the manner in which we disagree and concludes that 'better politics is possible, but only if we're willing and ready to Show Up'.  Read the full article here.

  • The advice to 'disagree well' is echoed by John Wesley (yes, the original John Wesley) and quoted in a thoughtful piece by Ben Cohen on Tearfund's website.  Among the advice Wesley gave voters was 'to take care their spirits were not sharpened against those that voted on the other side'. Cohen's article can be found here.

  • The theme of disagreeing well underpins the thoughts of the Very Rev Dr Norman Hamilton OBE in a guest blog on CARE's election website.  He notes that he will 'not be impressed by the candidate who shouts loudest.... ' and argues that such behaviour 'is not much commendation for being a good public representative'.  Rather, he says that he is 'looking for rigorous and thoughtful debate; for evidence of a listening ear and for a desire to build the relationships that will oil the wheels of worthy change and steady progress'  and that 'the party manifesto is certainly not the only consideration, because it takes wise and thoughtful people to deliver it'. The full article is available here.

  • Tearfund also caught our attention with its live Facebook hustings event.  You can watch that here.

  • And our very own Dunstan Rodrigues argues in the Tearfund' lifestye section that while many will see voting on 8th June as the culmination of an election campaign, we should perhaps instead see this as merely the start of a new, reinvigorated political commitment. 

Many of these articles, in calling for a better quality and tone of debate, draw us back to our video 'disagree well' which you can see here.