BST blog

A day in the life of… a prison chaplain

I remember the first time I walked into a prison. The starkness of the metal barriers; the churning of my stomach; the rigid security checks; the stares of the prisoners; the drabness of everything.

I’ve become accustomed to it now, but this morning I get to accompany a new trainee chaplain on her first visit to a high-security prison, and I wonder if she feels the same nervousness I did.

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5 signs of an evangelical

These days it seems that being ‘evangelical’ is back in vogue. But what exactly does that mean?

Everyone wants to claim it, to the point that now many Christians from a broad range of theological backgrounds and beliefs label themselves by it, and it often seems to have different connotations in different cultures. The reality is, however, that many Christians (and certainly non-believers) don’t really have a clear idea of what the word actually means or who it describes.

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The perfect family

When my wife and I started having kids I thought, ‘Right, I’ll only let them see the good side of me.’ Well, it hasn’t worked. I just can’t keep it up. They’re around me too much. Maybe if they only saw me once a week I could pull it off. But every day? Too hard.

Church though, well that’s a different story. Those people do only see me once a week, so keeping up the façade of being ‘a good Christian’ is a little easier.

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Baptism: still stuck in the dirty water?

When I was a kid, my Dad was a doctor. So he would often go visiting people in hospitals and, if we were in the car, he’d take us with him.

I remember walking through hospital wards at all sorts of hours, and there were big scary signs up – ‘Strictly no visitors allowed’. “Dad, we can’t go in there!” And Dad would say, “Bah, nonsense, I’m a doctor, don’t take any notice of that”. Scurrying along these forbidden corridors, I would feel so proud of my Dad’s rebelliousness! But every time I saw a big nurse coming down the corridor, I’d make sure I was right by his side.

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Opportunity knocks on 21/06/13

This week’s top ten ministry work opportunities include being a graphic designer in Nepal, a pastor at a Chinese church in Sydney, a finance officer in Switzerland and a church-planter in Portugal…

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All you need is love?

A popular phrase that is currently high on my ‘makes me want to punch a wall’ list is: “I don’t have to like them, I just have to love them.” This is the attitude of many people when it comes to their fellow Christians.

But I would love nothing more than to ban that phrase, and here’s why…

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