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UNITED REFORMED CHURCH

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JPIT: Climate and Universal Credit

The newsletter of Joint Public Issues Team

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Newsletter 104 May 2019

Dear Friends,


Elections — Nuclear Weapon Protest — Climate Emergency Declaration — Universal Credit Sanctions Rethink... like buses, you wait for a hot topic to come along and then a fleet of them come along at once! Over the past few weeks, the UK news has been full of reports of activists and politicians engaged with public concerns and our team has been as busy as ever, passionately representing our four Churches in a wide spectrum of issues around justice and peace. I hope you’ve managed to catch some of our work and that it has equipped and inspired you to take action.


We love coming to visit congregations and interest groups to celebrate what is going on in the local church and to encourage you to reflect, pray and act on issues of injustice. As well as the Joint Public Issues Team coming to visit you, we’d love you to come and join with us! We’re currently planning the next JPIT Conference, to be held on Saturday 7 March 2020, and we are very excited about it! Please put the date in your diary and keep it free. You’ll be able to find out more information and reserve your place soon.


As always, please get in touch with your requests for information and support or news of what you have been up to. We love hearing from you.

With every blessing,


Hannah and Roo

JPIT Newsletter Editors 

European Elections 2019

This European election is unlike any other.


The UK Government and many others do not think the election should happen. The people elected may not ever take their seats and, if they do, they may not serve a full term. This election will take place in the midst of a national conversation which has often been polarising and confusing and has revealed many divides in our country.


What is the role of Christians at such a time? This briefing considers some of the political context in which the election is taking place, and invites you to consider what it means for you and how you might respond.

European Elections 2019 briefing

Climate Mass Lobby – The Time is Now

From across the UK, Christians will be gathering on Wednesday 26 June at Westminster to declare that ‘The Time is Now’ for action on climate change. Can you join us?


It will be a clear message to our politicians about our concern for our world, a celebration of our faith in action and an opportunity to pray together and encourage each other despite the challenges we face.

The Time is Now website

Universal Credit: Sanctions Rethink?

You may have seen the headline in the news that the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions has decided to stop imposing three-year-long benefit sanctions. We’re delighted by this news but does it go far enough?


Paul explores the issues behind the announcement.

Universal Credit blog: Rethinking Sanctions

Time to Rethink Sanctions report (2015)

Living Lent: The Joys of a Naked Cucumber

We had a tremendous time during Lent, with lots of people getting involved and taking the Living Lent challenges seriously. The Facebook group is still going strong, with a thriving community sharing tips and news, asking questions and encouraging us to keep going. Even though Lent has long passed, anyone is still welcome to join. For what you can do next, Hannah has written a blog post with some great ideas.


And as a way to round off the initiative for this year, guest blogger Naomi Oates has shared with us the highlights of her Living Lent.

Living Lent: What Next?

Naomi’s Living Lent blog: The Joys of a Naked Cucumber

Faith in Politics

Episode 6 of this season of the Faith in Politics podcast is still online, with Baroness Hilary Armstrong, explaining how her faith has impacted her understanding of politics and her public service.


Episode 7 will be released at the end of May, featuring Jonathan Aitken, author, former MP and cabinet member, convicted perjurer, now ordained minister. Don’t miss it!

Faith in Politics podcast

JPIT Conference 2020

Please put Saturday 7 March 2020 into your diary and keep it free! We are planning a conference like no other and we would love you to be part of it. We’ll be releasing further information in the coming months but for now - save the date!

Dates for your diary

  • Wednesday 29th May, 6.30pm: ‘Who Cares? - Responding to the cry of the earth’. Caritas Westminster invites you to an evening of practical suggestions for how your congregation can respond to the environmental crisis. There will be contributions from local and national organisations including CAFOD, CaFE, the Felix Project and more. Find out more here.

  • 17-23 June: Refugee Week. Seven Simple Acts for you and your church to do which will be a blessing to refugees. Find out more here.

  • 20-30 June: Refugee Festival Scotland. Entitled ‘Making Art Making Home’, this year’s festival focuses on the talent, creativity and resilience of New Scots artists and community groups. Find out more.

  • Wednesday 26th June: The Time is Now. This Mass Lobby for Climate Action shows that Christians care about our planet and calls our Government to take action. Be part of the event.

  • Sunday 7th July: Tax Justice Sunday. You can find out more about how you can support Church Action for Tax Justice and discover resources including new publication ‘Tax for the Common Good’ here.

  • Saturday 7th March 2020: JPIT Conference. Please join us! We’ll be releasing further details soon.

To publicise an event or project, or to follow up on any of the issues mentioned here, contact us on enquiries@jointpublicissues.org.uk
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Joint Public Issues Team | Methodist Church House | 25 Marylebone Road | London | NW1 5JR

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Posted on 25 May 2019

Information on these pages does not necessarily reflect the views of St Andrew's URC Cheam