Martin Palmer - Leader of a religious thing 
Wednesday, 7 November, 2007, 07:44 AM
Rating 5 out of 5 (Extraordinarily platitudinous)

Charging interest on loans, usury, is a sin. The chief sinner, and Great Satan, is Charles Prince who wickedly gave loans to people to buy houses that they would otherwise have been unable to afford. Usury was condemned by every pope, right up 'till the 20th century, when he infallibly changed his mind and founded the Vatican Bank instead.

Thankfully, there are still many muslims who follow the invisible magic friend's financial investment guidelines. Thanks to these steady rules, the muslim world has become the industrial and economic powerhouse that it is today. Islamic mortgages, where the bank is able to levy a variety of charges, none of which are called interest, preserve the purity of the islamic faith against the evils of capitalism. Since the invisible magic friend has not specifically banned creative accounting, such loans, which are not technically loans, and their associated interest payments, which are not technically interest payments, are not sinful and should therefore be adopted by all of us.

Thank goodness for the sincerity and devotion of Islamic scholars, who meticulously search for loopholes in Allah's rules, thus allowing us all to live pure and blameless lives, free from the wickedness of usury. Thank goodness such ingenuity is not being wasted on some less constructive pursuit.

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Dazzlingly Reverend Tom Butler - Bishop of Southwark 
Tuesday, 6 November, 2007, 07:59 AM
Rating 4 out of 5 (Highly platitudinous)

Ants shend old ants out to do the deadly (hic!) jobs. That'sh all us old folks are good for. Families are falling apart (hic!), not even getting married any more - putting vicars like me (hic!) - like me out of a job, like discarded old antsh. Jesus never discarded his old folks. He jusht got up and (hic!) left them, that'sh all. Told everbody to get up and leave their old folks, he did. Yet people seem happy with their families? Why aren't they miserable? They're not doing what (hic!) the church saysh they shhhoooould, yet they're going around being happy. Whatsh the matter with them (hic!)?

Pash the sherry bottle.

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John Bell of the Iona Community 
Monday, 5 November, 2007, 08:05 AM
Rating 4 out of 5 (Highly platitudinous)

Thousands of foreign women have been duped into travelling to the UK where they are exploited as sex slaves. This is a bad thing. The solution is not to regulate brothels, that would be sinful. Although at first glance we could solve the problem by stoning all the prostitutes to death, Jesus put an end to this particular form of entertainment when he said, "Let they who have not sinned cast the first stone", (whereupon his mother Mary hurled a large rock at the unfortunate victim). Clearly, the only humane solution to this problem is for me to come on here and appeal to the conscience of the brothels' customers. This might certainly work, but if not then it will give me many further opportunities to decry the wickedness of mankind without actually proposing any constructive solutions.

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Brian Draper 
Saturday, 3 November, 2007, 09:23 AM
Rating 2 out of 5 (A little platitudinous)

Hello, Brian Draper here, from the London Institute for Contemporary Christianity, where we equip Christians to engage biblically and relevantly with the issues they face.

My sermon today is on the topic of Justice. By that, I mean proper justice, not the kind dished out by British Courts. I mean the sort of justice that the bible talks about, like an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth. Alternatively, if you want to pick one of the nice bits of the bible, we could talk about the social justice in Amos. A better kind of justice, is the concept of ubuntu which, in addition to being a great computer operating system is also a traditional form of reparation and reconciliation in African societies. This is a good thing, so it must be based in the bible somewhere, and archbishop Desmond Tutu is a fan of it, so it must be a Christian thing as well. In fact, it's such a good idea that I'm quite sure Christians must've invented ubuntu. So let's all practise the age old tradition of Christian ubuntu.

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The Queen greets Darth Vader 
Saturday, 3 November, 2007, 02:44 AM
Please, somebody tell me this is just playfull journalistic editing. Surely the Guards didn't really play Darth Vader's theme to greet the king of Saudi Arabia?

http://www.weaselzippers.net/blog/2007/ ... lah-v.html

This had me in hysterics. Every time I watch it he looks more and more like the guy from Star Wars, with the big black cloak and a covered head, who wants to spread his message of mysticism and control throughout the world. Whereas in reality he's a bloke in a big black cloak and covered... er.

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Reverend Canon Doctor Alan Billings  
Friday, 2 November, 2007, 07:58 AM
Rating 4 out of 5 (Highly platitudinous)

Happy All Souls' Day everyone! Isn't it just great to be a Christian and to know that there's life after death. The devastating logic which leads to this conclusion is inescapable. IF the invisible magic friend went to all the trouble of creatng us then it's highly unlikely he's going to just snuff us out after four score years and ten, isn't it? This is why it's important to stop whining about your dead loved ones. Ancestor worship is idolatry, and a wicked, wicked sin that you'll burn in hell for. As a Reverend Canon Doctor and Director of the Centre for Ethics and Religion, Lancaster University, let me just assure you that this is what religion is all about: wishful thinking to help you ignore reality and get back to being a useful, productive member of the community, instead of some broken hearted, lovelorn mess. Pull your socks up and get on with your lives.

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Reverend Rosemary Lain-Priestley 
Thursday, 1 November, 2007, 08:02 AM
Rating 3 out of 5 (Fairly platitudinous)

David Miliband has decided not to meet his Saudi Arabian counterpart. This probably has nothing to do with the Saudi human rights record, which makes China look positively liberal. We all have to balance duty against personal life. Sometimes Jesus said to forget duty and listen to him, but sometimes he said the opposite, which I think helps a great deal. Faith is about having an integrated, holistic, spiritual, and various other meaningless adjectives, approach to these things. I should stress that the invisible magic friend does not, I repeat not, wish you to sacrifice your son to him. So at least that's one dilemma cleared up.

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Reverend Joel Edwards, General Director of the Evangelical Alliance 
Wednesday, 31 October, 2007, 08:11 AM
Rating 4 out of 5 (Highly platitudinous)

Immigration is big on the political agenda at the moment. On the one hand we have to welcome people from other countries and be kind to them. However, when I hear people on the bus talking all foreign, I find myself wondering why they don't speak a sensible language, like English. Those of you who are not Christians will be ruled by such prejudices. Fortunately, as a Christian, I am able to see all men as brothers, and even all women as brothers. You won't find Christians, with our inherent moral superiority, clinging to silly tribal loyalties. That's why, when my church announced that two Nigerians in the congregation had just become British citizens, everyone erupted in applause. They had decided to stop being foreigners and become proper British people!

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Dr Indarjit Singh - Director of the Network of Sikh organisations 
Tuesday, 30 October, 2007, 07:56 AM
Rating 4 out of 5 (Highly platitudinous)

Happy birthday to the Today programme! We talk a lot about the NHS on this programme. It's worrying that GPs are now out to maximise profit rather than help patients. We see a lot of people trying to maximise profits. The so-called entertainment industry is a case in point. They keep producing things that most people want to see rather than things that I like and which would be much better. Sports companies keep trying to make money as well. Sikhs don't do this. You won't see Sikhs trying to maximise money out of their businesses. We give all our money away to help the poor and the needy, just like the gurus did. When people stop trying to maximise profit by providing goods and services that people want to buy, the world will be a much better place.

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John Bell of the Iona Community 
Monday, 29 October, 2007, 08:06 AM
Rating 3 out of 5 (Fairly platitudinous)

I haven't been looking for dinosaurs on an archaelogical dig (Ed - Good, you wouldn't find any). To find out what happened to the dinosaurs, we naturally turn for an expert opinion to a theologian. Rubem Alves says the dinosaurs died because they were too strong and too successful. This seems quite sensible to me and clearly points to the same thing happening with the USA. The USA has problems with Cuba, Iraq, Iran, Syria, North Korea, Russia, China, Afghanistan, Venezuela... It has the stupidest president ever and a spiralling national debt. So I can't help wonder when the USA's tremendous success will cause it to stop being top nation, and will it go quietly? My invisible magic friend became a weak and vulnerable man as an example to the USA and since they nearly all believe in him, I'm sure the Americans will ride into the sunset in a dignified and humble way.

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