Monday, July 30, 2012

NIGERIA – Fresh calls for prayer for attack victims


There's a renewed call for prayer today for victims of ongoing attacks against churches and Christian communities in Nigeria. Release partner Stefanos Foundation says many Christians have been left deeply traumatised by the violence.

It asks for prayers for members of the following churches, which have been bombed by militants: The Living Faith Church, Bauchi; Christ Chosen Church, Jos: Christ The King Church, Zaria, and Shalom Church, Kaduna. Extremists detonated bombs during worship services. 
Release works with Stefanos Foundation to provide trauma counselling to victims. Our partner is also supporting the Berom ethnic Christian communities of Plateau State, who have been attacked.  
Militants raided nine townships in Gashish District of Barkin Ladi. They left many Christians homeless, hungry and deeply traumatised, says Stefanos. 
For more news and a country profile about Nigeria, click here(Source: Stefanos Foundation)
• Members of these churches are deeply traumatised. Pray for these churches by name, that they can be reconnected with the truth of the scriptures through trauma healing.
• Ethnic Christians whose villages have been attacked are in need of care. Pray that these victims can be provided with the care they need to help them move forward with their lives.
• Please pray that attackers will come under the conviction of the Holy Spirit and turn away from violence.
• Pray that Christians will find the strength and grace to refrain from retaliation.
• Ask God to protect and strengthen our partners as they seek to help victims.

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Monday, July 23, 2012

Nigeria: unrest in Jos as army launches offensive in Plateau State



Trouble flared briefly in the Plateau State capital, Jos yesterday when a rocket propelled grenade (RPG) fired from a moving vehicle on the Ungwar Daba Bukuru Express Way damaged nearby buildings and killed a seven year-old boy. While it has been reported internationally that the target was the Nurul Islam School, there is local speculation that it may have been aimed at the National Youth Service (NYSC) orientation camp at Zang Commercial Secondary School.

Hundreds of people evacuated from villlages

According to CSW sources, upon hearing the explosion Muslim youths in the area took to the streets with guns, but were eventually brought under control by the security forces. No casualties were reported. Earlier that day, raiders had attacked the Sabon Gida Kanar area, also in Bukuru, killing three people.
Elsewhere in Plateau State, hundreds of people from five villages in Riyom and Barkin Ladi Local Government Areas (LGAs) have moved to allocated camps after the Special Task Force (STF) issued a 48-hour deadline for evacuation, ahead of a large scale offensive targeting the group responsible for the spate of deadly attacks on non-Muslim villages in these areas that have claimed hundreds of lives since 2010. Although the STF has described this is a temporary measure to avoid civilian deaths in crossfire, some representatives of the Fulani villages claim it may be permanent.
The offensive comes after an estimated 100 people died in co-ordinated armed attacks on an estimated 12 villages, and a subsequent attack on funeral goers that claimed the lives of three politicians.

Teenage bomber thought to have been targeting dignitaries

The Islamist sect Boko Haram claimed responsibility for the shootings in Plateau State and for the suicide bombing at Maiduguri’s Central Mosque on 13 July, in which five people were killed, the first time that Boko Haram has attacked a mosque. The teenage bomber is thought to have been targeting dignitaries in attendance, in particular the Shehu of Borno, a prominent traditional Muslim ruler, and the Deputy Governor of Borno State.
On the same day, three gunmen murdered the education secretary of Marte Local LGA in the state at his home. Then on Monday, Nigerian news agencies reported that the councillor who represented Bolari Ward 1 had been shot dead in her Maiduguri home during curfew hours by unknown gunmen who also stole her jewellery.
Boko Haram is also thought to be responsible for a car bomb that exploded at a filling station near a Living Faith church in Okene, an area close to Lokoja, the Kogi State capital on Sunday 15 June. One of the would-be bombers was apprehended, and two days later security forces in Kogi uncovered a bomb-making factory in Okaito, Okehi LGA. The two room bungalow was reportedly disguised as a mosque in one room and a church in the other, and among other things, stored 46 Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs).
Meanwhile, in Kaduna State, three members of Boko Haram were apprehended by local youths in Rigasa and Mahuta suburbs of Kaduna metropolis on 16 July. The gunmen had entered the compound of the District Head of Afaka, Alhaji Abdulwahab, in a bid to kill him. Local police report that one of the suspects led them to a hideout where a number of items were recovered, including two bags of chemicals, a jerry can of acid, and eight car alarm systems.

CSW welcome effective intervention by the security forces

Andrew Johnston, Advocacy Director of Christian Solidarity Worldwide (CSW) said, “We offer our deepest condolences to all who have lost loved ones in recent violence. CSW welcomes the security breakthroughs in Kogi and Kaduna. While very concerned at the latest attack in Jos and the use of an RPG, we also welcome the effective intervention by the security forces that ended the subsequent violence and efforts by the STF to apprehend the perpetrators of the incessant murders in Riyom and Barkin Ladi, which are long overdue.”

I want to...

Pray

Join 30 days of prayer for Nigeria
CSW launches 30 days of prayer for Nigeria and urges Christians around the world to show their support. You can take part by joining CSW’s Facebook group.
Please pray:
• For all those who have lost loved ones, asking God to comfort and uphold them, sustaining them with His peace.
• For an end to the cycle of retaliatory violence, and that security forces would be able to calm situations using minimal force.
• Pray fervently for every attack planned against churches or government facilities to fail, and attackers to be apprehended.
• Ask God to move in power to expose Boko Haram’s plans, members, funders and backers and bring an end to every aspect of the violence perpetrated by the group.
• That regardless of their creed, Nigerians would unite against Boko Haram.
• For the urgent restoration of peace and true reconciliation between religious communities in Kaduna.

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Thursday, July 19, 2012

Donald Grey Barnhouse - christiansquoting.org.uk


Just as the Holy Spirit came upon the womb of Mary, so He came upon the brain of a Moses, a David, an Isaiah, a Paul, a John and the rest of the writers of the divine library. The power of the Highest overshadowed them, therefore that holy thing which was born of their minds is called the Holy Bible, the word of God. The writing of Luke will, of course, have the vocabulary of Luke and the work of Paul will bear the stamp of Paul s mind. However, this is only in the same manner that the Lord Jesus might have had eyes like his mother s or hair that was the same color and texture as hers. He did not inherit her sins because the Holy Spirit has come upon her. If we ask, how could this be, the answer is God says so. And the writings of men of the Book did not inherit the errors of their carnal minds because their writings were conceived by the Holy Spirit and born out of their personalities without partaking of their fallen nature. If we ask, how could this be, again the answer is God says so.
DONALD GREY BARNHOUSE (March 28, 1895 – November 5, 1960), The Invisible War

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Eaton Stannard Barrett - christiansquoting.org.uk

Woman--last at the cross, and earliest at the grave.- Eaton Stannard Barrett (1786 – March 20, 1820)

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Natalie Barney - christiansquoting.org.uk

Fashion: the search for a new absurdity. -- Natalie Barney, _Little Mistresses_ (31 October 1876 – 2 February 1972)


To be one's own master is to be the slave of self.Natalie Clifford Barney

Monday, July 16, 2012

Carl Barney -- christiansquoting.org.uk

There are three types of men in the world. One type learns from books. One type learns from observations. And one type just has to urinate on the electric fence himself.'- Carl Barney, quoted in `` Ten Stupid Things Men Do to Mess Up Their Lives,'' Dr. Laura Schlessinger

Saturday, July 14, 2012

ATTACK ON GASHISH VILLAGE OF BARAKIN LADI L.G.A 5TH TO 8TH JULY 2012


                                                              Attack on 9 villages of Gashish B/ladi 

1 Stefanos Foundation Report| 5th to 8th July attack on B/Ladi 

The people of Gashish  in B/Ladi LGS of Plateau State woke up Thursday morning, 
5th July,2012 to see their growing farm crops(maize) which were not yet mature 
nor ready to be harvested being cut by the neighbouring Fulanis living in the area; 
leaving only the crops belonging to the Fulanis themselves standing.   43 persons 
had their farm crops, which they were hoping to be ready for harvest soon so that 
they can feed their families and also sale some of the farm produce to generate 
income for the family, completely destroyed. 
 Before that incidence, an eye witness who spoke to Stefanos said on 2nd July, 
2012, the villagers were on vigil with the security operatives of the Joint Task 
Force assigned to their community when then saw a strange fire burning by the 
river bank so they decided to investigate then they heard gun shut which killed 
one of them who happened to be a mobile police man. The following the day the 
police raided the area to fish out the perpetrators but they had all fled their 
homes. The Fulanis regrouped early hours of 5th July, 2012 to carry out that havoc 
on the local chrisians of Gashish who farming has been their means of livelihood.   
 A farm owner Yakubu Jango said that his whole farm was destroyed he wondered 
what he did to the fulanis that would make them do such a thing. 

Pst. David said to Stefanos that 
“waking up in the morning of 5th July, 
2012 they found out that their farms 
were completely destroyed and even 
around 8am the fulanis still came 
back and continue cutting down their 
farm crops. 
When we called on the security personnel with JTF to help, they refuse saying 
that it is not their work but that of the police. So, that was how we watched 
helplessly while our farms where destroyed by the fulanis and after the 
destruction they left the village to an unknown place. Nobody was arrested as a 
result of what happened.        

Because of the continues attack on 
the people of Gashish the women of 
the community decided to hold a 
peaceful demonstration today, 6th 
July, 2012 saying enough is enough 
and that they don’t want the 
presence of the military personnel 
since they don’t seem to be effective 
in protecting them.  

NAME OF THOSE WHOSE FARM CROPS WERE DESTROYED 
S/N NAME 
1 IRIMAY CHOJI 
2 BULUS BITRUS 
3 YAKUBU JANGWOK 
4 STEPHEN AUDU 
 5 MUSA ADDU 
6 BENJAMIN DAGAN 
7 BWEDE MWANGWONG 
8 SUNDAY JAME 
9 KACHOLLOM PAM 
10 HANATU YAKUBU 
11 GWONG BAGO 
12 DANJUMA MBAKA 
13 DACHOLLOM GYANG 
14 REV STEPHEN BWEDE 
15 JOSHUA DING 
16 ISHAYA MALLAN 
17 GYANG DOROH 
18 PASTOR LAAZARUS 
19 BULUS GWONG 
20 SATI DOROH 
21 JAMES GWONG 
22 JERRY YUSUF 
23 AMOS ADAMU 
24 GYANG DANJUMA 
25 DANLADI JAL 
26 VICTORIA SUNDAY 
27 THOMAS A MANGS 
28 SUNDAY MALLAN 
29 IBRAHIM MALLAN 
30 STEHEN ALAMBA 
31 DANJUMA A MALLAM 
32 SOLOMON CHOJI 
33 BITRUS AUDU 
34 HOSEA GWONG 
35 PAM MAGIT 
36 AMOS SUNDAY 
37 SAMUEL ISHAYA 
38 IHAYA DONG 
39 DAZAM TIMOTHY 
40 ELISHA CHOJI 
41 KANANG TIMOTHY 
42 GAIUS DACHUNG  
43 GIDEON BWEDE 
                

The attackers then unleash their carnage on this area of B/Ladi LGA of Plateau 
State. They came in their numbers on 7th and 8th July, 2012 and storm on 9 
communities: Ruk, Kuzen, Maseh, Pkwabuduk, Kufang, Ningon, Kai, Kakuruk 
and Angyoi villages. They left 198 families displaced, 88 persons dead and 187 
house burnt. Producing 22 widows and 90 orphans. 

In Ruk village 18 displaced families, 14 burnt houses and 4 death. In Kuzen, 5 
death. In Maseh, 63 death, 32 burnt houses, 32 displaced families, 42 orphans 
and 14 widows. In Pkwabuduk, 3 death, 23 burnt houses, 23 displaced 
families, 16 orphans and 2 widows. In Kufang 23 burnt houses and 23 
displaced families. In Kai 32 burnt houses and 32 displaced families. In 
Ningong 10 burnt houses and 10 displaced families. In Kakuruk 53 burnt 
houses and 55 displaced families, 13 death, 32 orphans and 6 widows. Yet to 
comfirm that of Angyoi village and the overall total of displaced persons. 
 On Sunday 8th July 2012 while sympathisers were at the mass burial of 
villagers killed, the Fulani herdsmen attacked the area again leading to the 
dead of a Senator of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Senator Gyang Dantong 
and a law maker Hon. Gyang Danfulani. Among thirteen others including 
security men 
  
 According to Pam Ayuba, the spokesman for the Plateau state’s governor who 
confirmed the incident, said the senator representing Plateau north, Gyang 
Dantong, and the majority leader of the state assembly, Gyang Fulani and 
others were gunned down on Sunday by Fulani herdsmen,” 

He added that the two were killed shortly after attending the mass burial for 
the victims of a Saturday raid, also blamed on the Fulani. After the burial, the 
officials went to a reception at the home of another local leader in the state’s 
Gashish district, roughly 90 kilometres (56 miles) from the capital Jos, Ayuba 
said. 

“The Fulani herdsmen raided the house...they shot (the politicians) and some 
others but the key people who lost their lives are the senator and the majority 
leader,” he explained. He said one other federal lawmaker “escaped death by a 
whisker. 

According to Hon Daniel Dem, the member representing Riyom Constituency 
in the Plateau State House of Assembly, “at about 2:30 pm on the fateful 
Sunday, we commenced the burial first at Maseh, my constituency. While we 
were there, we were hearing gun shots from behind the hills, but we were not 
seeing them. So, we continued with what we were doing. But all of a sudden, 
the gunmen started jumping down from the mountains. The sight of the 
attackers caused people to begin to flee; everyone had to run as far as your 
legs could take you. The running caused serious stampede because the 
security agents that were among us were also running for their dear lives. We 
thought they would face the gunmen and repel them but they fled and you can 
imagine the stampede. 
It was after we ran for about two kilometres that my colleague, Hon Gyang 
Fulani, collapsed. Not very far from that place, we saw Senator Dantong on the 
ground; the same thing with Hon Mwadkwon. The rest of us were trying to 
 revive them one after the other, but my distinguished senator could not make 
it, just as Hon Fulani. We got a vehicle and rushed them to the hospital but it 
was already late, the damage had been done. I could not belief what I saw with 
my eyes. 
Stefanos Foundation remembers these lawmakers for their dedication to the 
service of their people. Hon. Gyang Fulani’s concern for these attacks brought 
him several times to Stefanos Foundation office. This organisation holds with 
high regards our days of working with him and also Senetor Gyang Dantong at 
Vom Christian Hospital where he served as the Superintendant of this 
missionary Hospital. 
As the coordinator of Stefanos Foundation, I was deeply concerned when in 
2004 Senator Dantong shared with me his intention to go into politics. I recall 
that the then, Dr. Dantong was the most capable doctor available to us when in 
December 12th, 2003 a similar attack was carried out by same Fulani 
herdsmen in Rim, part of his constituency. This was the attack that killed 19 
people, among whom was Reverend Manjang, the then Vice President of the 
Church of Christ in Nigeria (COCIN).  
When persuaded to carry out surgery on his bleeding sister macheted by 
Fulani herdsmen in that attack in 2003, Dantong turned to me and said you 
know it is against my profession. I remember him saying this is why he 
needed to go into politics and try to change things at that level. Dr. Dangton 
sacrificed his profession then at the course of saving his sister’s life when he 
found out he was the only doctor available to do so. It is sad that it has now 
cost him his life. 
We continue to call on the Government of Nigeria and the international 
Community to take effective measures towards an end to this violence in 
Nigeria.  

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Friday, July 13, 2012

Nigerian Christians Fleeing Their Homes Following Mass Killings


By Michael Ireland
Senior International Correspondent, ASSIST News Service
JOS, NIGERIA (ANS) -- Members of the Church of Christ in Nigeria in the Jos region are fleeing their homes, fearful of more violence in the wake of last weekend’s mass killings in Plateau state, according to Open Doors News.
CCN officials told Open Doors News that after a week of rising tensions between the mainly Muslim ethnic Fulani and the mainly Christian ethnic Birom, about 50 members of the Church of Christ in Nigeria around the village of Maseh had fled their homes, taking refuge July 7 in the home their pastor.
The gunmen came Saturday, entering the home and opening fire. Then they burned the house, Open Doors News reported.
“Fifty of our church members were killed in the church building where they had fled to take refuge. They were killed alongside the wife of the pastor and children,” said Rev. Dachollom Datiri, vice president of the Church of Christ in Nigeria, in a July 11 interview with Open Doors News at the church’s headquarters in Jos.
Open Doors News reported that church officials said that in all, about 100 Church of Christ members were killed in the weekend attacks in 12 villages: Maseh, Ninchah, Kakkuruk, Kuzen, Negon, Pwabiduk, Kai, Ngyo, Kura Falls, Dogo, Kufang, and Ruk.
“In a country where Christians have suffered violence for more than a decade, last weekend’s mass killings nonetheless have left the Church of Christ, and much of the country, in shock,” the news report stated.
“They are psychologically traumatized, and their productive economic activities are impeded,” said Rev. Obed Dashan, general secretary of the Church of Christ in Nigeria, of surviving church members.
He added: “Most of them are peasant farmers and the attacks have not allowed them to go to their farms. Even those that have planted crops have had their crops destroyed by the Muslim attackers.”
Open Doors News went on to say that church leaders claim the Nigerian government is turning a blind eye to persecution of Christians in the country, and fear more violence will occur as a result.
“The whole thing is coming to a head,” Datiri said. “It’s been a long-term thing planned by the Boko Haram. This is a jihadist movement with the agenda to Islamize the country. It is a jihad, a religious war against Christians for refusing to embrace Islam. So, they are using terrorism as a weapon. That is the reason you see that the target of their attacks are Christians and our churches.”

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Thursday, July 12, 2012

DOZENS DEAD IN TRIPLE ATTACK ON CHRISTIANS BY MUSLIMS IN NIGERIA



Over 65 people, including two politicians, have been killed in a triple attack on a Christian farming community in Plateau state, Nigeria, by Muslims.
Country: 
Africa, Nigeria
Scene_near_Jos_4X3.jpg
Christian-owned farms were destroyed in the first attack
Jeremy Weate / CC BY 2.0
The first incident happened on Thursday morning (5 July) when Muslims destroyed 43 Christian-owned farms. Nobody was arrested. They followed this up on Saturday (7 July) with attacks on nine Christian villages around the city of Jos, killing dozens of people.  
The next day, a funeral for the victims of the village raids was attacked by Muslims. Two politicians in attendance, Gyang Dantong, the senator representing Plateau North, and Gyang Fulani, the majority leader of the state assembly, were shot dead. Both were believed to be Christian. Several other people were also killed.
Security forces said Muslim Fulani herdsmen were behind the violence but Islamist militant group Boko Haram issued a statement on Tuesday (10 July) in which they seemed to be claiming responsibility for the attacks. It said:
We thank Allah for the successful attack... in Plateau state on Christians and security men. 
A spokesman for the state’s governor said that the Muslims resented Plateau state’s Christian political leadership. The state is in Nigeria’s Middle Belt between the country’s predominantly Muslim North and mainly Christian South. It has been the scene of frequent anti-Christian violence.
A local Christian leader blamed the Nigerian government for failing to protect Christians. He said that most of the military forces in the area protect Muslim villages instead of the Christian ones.
One commentator suggested that the deaths of the politicians may drive the tensions in Jos to the top of the political agenda.
The triple attack in Plateau state comes as Christians, especially those in NorthernNigeria, are under the mounting threat of violence by Boko Haram, which wants to establish an Islamic state there. Churches have been bombed on an almost weekly basis over the last few months, including two in Jos within the space of two weeks.

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Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Simon Barnes - -- christiansquoting.org.uk

I'll tell you what Fowler's trouble is. It is making jokes. It is falling foul of the global conspiracy of the humourless. Jokes humanise, jokes civilise, jokes deflect wrath. Jokes give perspective, insight, clarity. Jokes give complexity. Jokes add life-giving layers of possibility. Jokes do not compromise the seriousness: jokes add to a serious intention and make deeper the meaning. Ask Shakespeare if you don't believe me, or Donne, or Joyce.
But so much of daily life is organised by the conspiracies of the jokeless: the dehumanisers, those who dread perspective, balance, thought. Lord deliver us from the humourless - I fear Fowler has fallen into their clutches. Moral: don't make jokes. Ever. The humourless always win.- Simon Barnes, The Times, April 7 1999 - (written after Fowler landed in hot water for sniffing the touchline as if it was a line of coke)

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Clive Barnes (1927 – 2008)-- christiansquoting.org.uk

Television is the first truly democratic culture - the first culture available to everybody and entirely governed by what the people want. The most terrifying thing is what the people do want.~Clive Barnes (May 13, 1927 – November 19, 2008)

Monday, July 09, 2012

Christiaan H. Barnard (1922 - 2001) - christiansquoting.org.uk



Suffering isn't ennobling; recovery is. - Christiaan H. Barnard  (1922 - 2001)

Saturday, July 07, 2012

Kevin G. Barkes -- christiansquoting.org.uk

The Internet is run by a guy named Heisenberg, and his principles are uncertain.~ Kevin G. Barkes, alt.quotations, 3 Oct 2001

Friday, July 06, 2012

Brigitte Bardot (1934-____) -- christiansquoting.org.uk


I gave my beauty and my youth to men. I am going to give my wisdom and experience to animals. - Brigitte Bardot (1934-____)In "The Harper Book of Quotations," by Robert I. Fitzhenry, 1993.

It's sad to grow old, but nice to ripen. - Brigitte Bardot

I have been very happy, very rich, very beautiful much adulated, very famous and very unhappy.- Brigitte Bardot (1934-____)"London Times," 28 Sep 1984.

Thursday, July 05, 2012

K. A. Barden -- christiansquoting.org.uk

Casual Christians Become Christian Casualties.- K. A. Barden

Wednesday, July 04, 2012

William Barclay (1907-1978) - christiansquoting.org.uk



A saint is someone whose life makes it easier to believe in God. - William Barclay

Love always involves responsibility, and love always involves sacrifice. And we do not really love Christ unless we are prepared to face His task and to take up His Cross.-William Barclay (1907-1978)

True prayer is asking God what He wants. --William Barclay

Division has always been a disease of the church... The Love Feast, which should have been the sign and symbol of perfect unity, has become a thing of divisions and class distinctions. And here there is something which only the newer translations reveal. In the older translations, it is said that to eat and drink at the sacrament without discerning the Lord's body is the way to judgment and not to salvation. But in the best Greek text, the word Lord's is not included. The sin is not to discern the body; that is to say, not to discern that the church is a body, not to be aware of the oneness of the church, not to be aware of the togetherness in which all its members should be joined.-William Barclay (1907-1978), Ethics in a Permissive Society

We may not understand how the spirit works; but the effect of the spirit on the lives of men is there for all to see; and the only unanswerable argument for Christianity is a Christian life. No man can disregard a religion and a faith and a power which is able to make bad men good.-William Barclay (1907-1978), The Gospel of John (Vol.1)

For the Christian, heaven is where Jesus is. We do not need to speculate on what heaven will be like. It is enough to know that we will be for ever with Him. When we love anyone with our whole hearts, life begins when we are with that person; it is only in their company that we are really and truly alive. It is so with Christ. In this world our contact with Him is shadowy, for we can only wee through a glass darkly. It is spasmodic, for we are poor creatures and cannot live always on the heights. But the best definition of it is to say that heaven is that state where we will always be with Jesus, and where nothing will separate us from Him any more. -William Barclay (1907-1978), The Gospel of John (Vol. 2)

The humblest and the most unseen activity in the world can be the true worship of God. Work and worship literally become one. Man's chief end is to glorify God and to enjoy him for ever; and man carries out that function when he does what God sent him into the world to do. Work well done rises like a hymn of praise to God. This means that the doctor on his rounds, the scientist in his laboratory, the teacher in his classroom, the musician at his music, the artist at his canvas, the shop assistant at his counter, the typist at her typewriter, the housewife in her kitchen -- all who are doing the work of the world as it should be done are joining in a great act of worship. -William Barclay, The Revelation of John, vol. 1 [1961]

Tuesday, July 03, 2012

Books read in July 2012

1. Can We Have Our Balls Back, Please?: How the British Invented Sport by Julian Norridge


If you want to know the origins of a given sport, look here. Some, like baseball, will surprise you. Only one big sport, basketball, has no British links. This British history of sport is inextricably intertwines with two things, class and gambling. Perhaps a chapter on the history of bookmaking would have been appropriate.


2. The Tolpuddle Martyrs by Joyce Marlow


In 1834 six Dorset farm workers who had formed a trades union were charged with administering unlawful oaths. The law had been passed to prevent mutinies. It was wrongly used b the local and national establishment to strike a blow against trades unions which were legal but feared. Found guilty, these men of good character, mostly active Methodists were sentenced to the maximum penalty of transportation to Australia for seven years. The horrific, brutal conditions at sea and in the penal colonies are well described. These sentences provoked huge popular and political protests. But it took over two years before pardons were given and the men brought back home. Wives and children had been supported by public giving and such help bought two farms in Essex for most of the families. Later they emigrated to Canada where they lived and died in anonymity. They had been sustained in adversity by strong personal faith. They received no support from either the Methodist nor the Established churches. These men are seen as martyrs for trades unionism. Their leader believed he was as much suffering for his religious dissent.


3. What Is the Mission of the Church by Kevin DeYoung and Greg Gilbert


What is the church meant to be doing, evangelism or social action? The authors clearly show that the Great Commission defines the role of the church. She is there to preach the gospel, making disciples and teaching them. As to a ministry of social justice, one may be surprised that it is only when well into the second chapter on the subject that a definition is attempted. I think the book's methodology and conclusions are biblical and helpful. What surprised me was no reference to any concept of sphere sovereignty whereby Christians may act together in Christ's name but not as church


4. A Boy's Own Dale by Terry Wilson


Like the author, my childhood was fifties Yorkshire. So I could relate to the community and family described here. It is a delightful read from a boy with a lot of initiative.


5. The Radical Disciple by John Stott


This book was the octogenarian Stott finishing his written ministry two years before his death. His writing as ever carries the hallmarks of his ministry, Biblical, clear and profoundly wise. Apart from his seeming wholesale acceptance of man made global warming I have no critical comments, only admiration for the clarity and simplicity of his teaching. Best of all is the chapter on dependency. It is not easy to find good writing on the subject of ageing.


6. Oliver Cromwell: A Pictorial Record by J. Batty


A short biography with many contemporary black and white prints. Definitely by a fan of the great man and only really suitable for like minded readers of which I am one.


7. A Little History of the World by Ernst Gombrich


How one views history depends upon the vantage point. I was taught anglocentric history. Here is history from a Jew in 1935 Vienna. Written for children but suitable for all, the major emphasis is on Europe, a Europe not centred on Britain. It is good, educational writing with some surprises. Jewish and Christian origins are related with no supernatural claims while Mohammed seems to really have conversed with the angel Gabriel. The story ends with the first world war, the final chapter being a personal postscript briefly updating major 20th century events in the lifetime of the author. An index would be helpful.


8. Not Forgotten by Neil Oliver


The government decided that no-one who died in a foreign field during WWI would have their body repatriated. Instead they were commemorated close to where they fell and ay home, after the war, over 36,000 memorials were erected by communities wanting to remember their dead. Neil Oliver tells the stories of some memorials and some of the names. He intersperses this with personal family history having had both grandfathers serving in the conflict. A moving book and fitting tribute to a now past generation.


9. Travel with William Tyndale: England's Greatest Bible Translator (Day One Travel Guides) by Brian H. Edwards


Tyndale did more than anyone to influence our language for his Bible translation was toinfluence all subsequent translations. He suffered exile and death for his faith. Here are detailed his history and faith in the context of the Reformation. As much a history as a travel guide.


10. Travel Through Cambridge: City of Beauty, Reformation and Pioneering Research (Day One Travel Guide by David Berkley


A guide to both buildings and history of the city. Extensive history to show howCambridge was the birthplace of the Reformation and of much modern science too. It would be good to have more details of if and when places are open to the public.


11. Death Destruction and a Packet of Peanuts: A Rollicking Pub Crawl Through Four Years Of The English Civil War by Chris Pascoe


An unusual guide to most of the major sites of the first English civil war, theirmonuments and pubs. One is surprised how little the civil war is remembered and commemorated. Not a single museum found but some pubs with good exhibits. Not finding drunkenness amusing I did not appreciate the supposed humour but the pub crawl is informative if you want to find good beer and civil war commemoration. The description of the battles could be enhanced by simple maps.


12.  Timebomb by Gerald Seymour


I still think Seymour is the best thriller writer, but this is not his best work. It follows his usual style of contemporary subject with disparate initial strands woven together to a climax. I found some of his main characters less than believable. The top MI6 man is ruthless beyond any ethic. The main Russian gangster lives humbly under the thumb of his grandmother whose experiences in Sobibor are horrifically told. I am afraid I thought the end weak and predictable. Not, I think, the usual Seymour standard.


13. BIBLE DELIGHT (Proclamation Trust Media) by CHRISTOPHER ASH


A fine exposition of Ps 119. Our housegroup used it for studies and found itmost stimulating though the commentary was much more helpful than the questions. The author provides his own translation from the Hebrew.


14. Your Case is Hopeless: Bracing Advice from the "Boy's Own Paper" [Hardcover]
Karl Sabbagh 

Collected answers to questions sent in to a Victorian boys magazine. Answers only showing a very different world where we, the British, were confident in our superiority and right to rule. Not for the politically correct today.

15. Human Smoke: The Beginnings of World War II, the End of Civilization by 
Nicholson Baker

It is not until the last page that one is sure of the author's perspective. He thinks the pacifists who opposed America joining WW2 were right. How, on the evidence he cites as to Nazi evil, he can come to this conclusion is beyond me. It has to be in the true sense, a prejudicial view. The perspective of the book is American. There is little about pacifist resistance in the UK. The horrors of the treatment of the Jews are well related as is the resistance of the UK and USA to take in Jewish refugees. Bombing of civilian targets was initiated by the British. The Battle of Britain is ignored. Much id made of the British blockade of Germany. Nothing is said of the U-Boat blockade. The US support for China and provocation of Japan were news to me. War is horrible, but unlike the author, I think sometimes it is a necessary evil.


16. A Little Boy's War  by Roy Bartlett 

The author was nine years old when war was declared. Briefly evacuated to Buckinghamshire he was back home in Ealing before the bombing started. He has written a most evocative account of life in London . He brings the bombing alive as well as the privations of war time life. West London did not suffer the worst of the bombing but there was considerable loss of life in Ealing, especially later on from the V1 flying bombs. If you want to know what it felt like to live through WW2 in London, read this book. 

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