1) Queen Elizabeth II – Lord Michael Farmer writes about remembering her as ‘Elizabeth the Faithful’. Stephen McAlpine reflects on Elizabeth’s funeral calling it ‘One Last Magnificent Porous Day’. Bishop Graham Tomlin reflects on what the nation’s response to her death might mean, arguing it reveals a ‘latent spirituality in the UK’. Peter Stanford reflects in The Guardian on our approach to grief.
2) Pray for Iran – In light of the protests and violence in Iran after the death of Zhina Mahsa Amini, Christians around the world are looking for ways to pray for Iran. This prayer was shared by Elam Ministries, who are serving the Church in Iran. It was written by Asrin, an Iranian Christian leader who, like Zhina Mahsa Amini, is Kurdish and so understands the repression that both Kurds and women have faced in Iran over many decades. You can read the original prayer and learn more about Elam’s work here.
3) How Much Time and Energy Do We Waste Toggling Between Applications? – Interesting tech perspective on how much we ‘toggle’…
4) Divine comedy: the standup double act who turned to the priesthood – This is a fascinating account of Christian conversion, more so because it’s in a UK national newspaper. This paragraph especially stood out: “Recently Jack has started picturing his life as a great house comprised of many rooms. There are rooms for your friendships, your love life, your career, rooms that you put signs outside declaring: I do not want this changed by my religion. Gradually, though, God starts knocking on the doors of more rooms, asking to join you in there, too. “And it’s difficult and painful and annoying,” he told me. But God’s presence also changes your experience of the rooms. You realise this was how they were supposed to look all along. You realise they have become brighter.”
5) Otherness with Jen Wilkin – Fascinating discussion on this podcast about family discipleship on the ‘otherness’ we experience in all seasons of life.
6) 9 lessons from the most watched sermon ever – I got the chance to reflect on Archbishop Justin Welby’s sermon from Monday’s funeral. Here are nine lessons I wanted to take away.
7) How to keep the seat next to you empty – For something a bit different, this seems to work on buses, trains and planes… but what about church?!