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St Andrew’s • Cheam
UNITED REFORMED CHURCH

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JPIT: Refugees, cost of living

The newsletter of Joint Public Issues Team

Can’t read this? Click here

Newsletter 141      July 2022

Dear Friends


This month has been something of a rollercoaster. In the space of one week, we were devastated by news of the first flight to Rwanda for asylum seekers, and then relieved at the flight’s cancellation after legal intervention. The following weekend, as we gathered with over 100 of you online and in London to unearth hope and seek justice at our national conference, the government announced a new scheme to electronically tag asylum seekers.


Seeking justice can be tiring work, especially when breakthroughs are few and far between. But spending time together in community last weekend reminded us that, in the words of Dr Martin Luther King, ‘the arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice’. 


This week, we pray that you might be strengthened by community to unearth hope, and to seek justice where you are. 


Every Blessing

Hannah

We loved seeing you at From the Ground Up!

We had a great day at our national conference, exploring what it means for our communities to be part of building change From the Ground Up. We joined together online and in London to hear from brilliant speakers, share in engaging workshops and get equipped to take action.


You can catch up on some of the highlights of the day, including panels and interviews, on our Youtube channel.

Click here to watch the recordings

One of our highlights: Deacon Eunice Atwood closed the day with some alternative Beatitudes, drawing on the words shared throughout the day.

Click here to watch the alternative beatitudes

The Beckly Lecture 2022

Just one week to go until the Beckly Lecture 2022! We’re really looking forward to hearing the Rt Hon Lord Paul Boateng reflect on ‘Britain: Global Power or Good Neighbour?’.


Will you be at Methodist Conference? Join us in person! We’ll also be livestreaming the lecture. Sign up on Eventbrite to receive the online link or to join in Telford.

Click here to register to join online or in Telford

Refugee Week - 20-26 June

This week, we’re celebrating Refugee Week. This year’s theme is ‘Healing’, celebrating community, mutual care and the human ability to start again. At a time when the rhetoric and action around asylum seekers and refugees in the UK is so damaging, it’s an opportunity to focus on the hope we have for a society healed of injustice.


How can you get involved? We’ve shared five ways you can get involved over on our blog.

Click here to read the blog

Churches Together in Britain and Ireland have also launched a new resource for Refugee Week – Sanctuary: The Hospitality of Host, Guest and Stranger. It offers reflections, prayers and ideas for action.

Click here to download the resource from CTBI

Over the past few months, our Churches have been responding to the UK Government’s plans to send asylum seekers to Rwanda. You can read the statements our churches have made on our website. 

Click here to read our responses to the Rwanda Plan

The Cost of Living Crisis

The cost of living is of major concern for many at the moment. Rising prices in food, fuel and transport are forcing people to make hard choices over how they spend their money. The least well-off are the worst affected, with those choices being narrowed to heating or eating, or skipping meals to feed their children. How did we get to this point? And what can churches do in response?


We’ve worked with communities and reviewed the data to produce a briefing on the Cost of Living crisis, exploring how churches might respond. 

Click here to read the Cost of Living Briefing

Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons Conference 2022

This week, governments and civil society representatives will meet in Vienna for the first meeting of State Parties on the UN Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons. What does that mean for work worldwide to eradicate nuclear weapons? Steve explores in his latest blog.

Click here to read Steve’s blog

As the meeting takes place, could you take action? Thank you to everyone who has tweeted or written a letter to ask high street banks to end their investment in nuclear weapons.

On Tuesday can you join us in tweeting as this week is the first meeting of the States that have signed the Treaty of the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons? You can find Tweets and graphics on our social media and our website.

Click here to find tweets and graphics to share

On the Blog...

Empowered to succeed or set up to fail? Beth explores how failures in the social security system mean families are struggling to cope with the cost of living crisis.


Click here to read Beth’s blog.

‘Apathy will not stop the planet’s temperature from rising to catastrophic levels. Stupor will not feed the hungry. Hope, and the action that follows, just might.’ 


The Hope Won’t Kill You. Read Ryan’s reflection on hope in football and campaigning.


Click here to read Ryan’s blog.

Time to ban the bailiffs. Read this Guest blog from our friends at Debt Justice UK (formerly the Jubilee Debt Campaign), about the need for Council Tax collection reforms and ending the use of bailiffs.


Click here to read the blog from Debt Justice UK.

Faith in Politics Podcast - In conversation with Marsha De Cordova MP

This month, Beth and Ryan speak to MP for Battersea Marsha de Cordova. They discuss finding your calling, the role of the Opposition and how to keep working for justice without losing hope.

After Marsha couldn’t attend our Conference, we’re delighted to be able to have her in conversation.


You can listen on Spotify, Apple Podcasts and Soundcloud.

Click here to listen to the episode.

Just Scripture - Christian Aid

Would you like to take part in an online Bible study with folks in the Global South? Just Scripture is a programme of Christian Aid in which groups of Christians meet online to explore Scripture together. Its purpose is to:

  • grow relationships between communities across the world
  • equip and encourage us to be people who challenge injustice
  • amplify our collective prophetic voice

If you already have close connections to church groups elsewhere, then Christian Aid can provide training and resources to help you deepen that relationship.

If you do not have an existing partnership, then Christian Aid can introduce you to Christian groups in the Global South who are keen to take part.

Click here to find out more

Events

“The Work of our Hands: Reconciliation in Turbulent Times” – Saturday 2 July 2022

Join Church and Peace and the Fellowship of Reconciliation for a one-day conference in Birmingham. They’ll be exploring how to deal with conflict in today’s church and society, and how we can care for ourselves and others whilst working for reconciliation. They will be joined by Revd Barbara Glasson, Dr Justine Huxley and a number of workshop leaders. Click here to find out more and book your place.

Sustainability: The Susanna Wesley Foundation Annual Conference – Thursday 30th June 2022

Join the Susanna Wesley Foundation for a free, day-long conference exploring sustainability through the lens of equity, economy and environment. Hear from Prof Robert Beckford, Dr Alistair McIntosh, Prof Molly Scot Cato and more during the day. Click here to book your free place.

Dates for your diary

To publicise an event or project, or to follow up on any of the issues mentioned here, contact us on enquiries^jointpublicissues,org,uk

Joint Public Issues Team | Methodist Church House | 25 Marylebone Road | London | NW1 5JR

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Posted on 21 Jun 2022

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