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Questions & Responses

This category contains 18 posts


‘Let no one who is not eager for truth and peace enter here’ (Plato)

Articles on this site express varying points of view, to encourage mature thinking on serious issues. The assumption is that you will want to study a controversial topic from various angles before you arrive at a conclusion, rather than simply believe what someone told you when you were impressionable! (So some stuff here is ‘hot’. Proceed at your own risk!). See the Statement of Faith for John Mark Ministries' theological stance.

Refugees: busting some of the myths

Busting some myths about asylum seekers and refugees March 12, 2016 Tom Ballard The Melbourne University qualitative research laid bare the negative views on asylum seekers held by many Australians. At this year’s Melbourne Comedy Festival, I’ll be performing Boundless Plains To Share

The Art of Darkness (dark literature which can change your life)

Rowland: Which ‘dark books’ have made a deep impression on you? Mine: off the top of my head: Steinbeck’s Grapes of Wrath, CSLewis: The Problem of Pain (and later A Grief Observed), James Joyce’s Ulysses, and Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man; more recently Cormac McCarthy’s The Road. ~~ the art of darkness […]

Letter to a new Prime Minister

I was going to write a letter to Australia’s

Science & Religion: Excellent Interview with Cambridge Professor of Geophysics

Natural disasters not result of the fall: Professor Volcanoes, earthquakes and floods are not the result of a fallen world, argues Bob White, Professor of Geophysics at the University of Cambridge, a Fellow of the Royal Society and Director of the Faraday Institute for Science and Religion. He was guest speaker at a recent Conference […]


Asteroid strike: 7 ways the world could end As a mountain-sized asteroid is detected heading towards Earth, what is the likeliest ‘extinction-level’ scenario for mankind? Photo: Alamy By Michael Hanlon Our solar system is littered with billions of pieces of debris, from the size of large boulders to objects hundreds of miles across. We know […]

Religion in America (Martin Marty October 2014)

Religion Unites or Divides by MARTIN E. MARTY Monday | Oct 20 2014 Rally in Pensacola to support educators on trial in federal court for praying in school (2009) Image Credit: Cheryl Casey / shutterstock.com “ISIS CRISIS.” . . . “EBOLA CRISIS” . . . “ECONOMIC WORRIES” . . . Headlines about these and others […]


Preachers could learn from TED / TEDx talks. Their motto: ‘ideas-worth-spreading.’ The world’s leading ‘thinkers and doers’ – like Bill Gates and Richard Branson, and a few hundred others – speak for 18 minutes or less. The talks are then posted daily, free, on TED.com – or you can follow them on Twitter and Facebook.  These speakers share their […]

DOUBT: is it good or bad for your faith?

Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby at St Paul’s Cathedral last year. Photo: Bloomberg London: The Archbishop of Canterbury, the Most Reverend Justin Welby, has disclosed that he questions whether God exists. Britain’s most senior churchman, who is effectively the leader of almost 80 million Anglicans worldwide, admitted that there are moments when he asks himself […]

‘Happiness’ vs ‘Joy’

​HAPPINESS AND JOY ARE NOT THE SAME  In a memorable Peanuts cartoon Lucy asks Charlie Brown ‘Did you ever know anyone who was really happy?’ Before she could finish the question Snoopy the dog comes dancing into the next frame. As only Snoopy can he dances his merry way across all frames while Lucy and […]


(Notes for a ‘box’ in my forthcoming blog/book Questions & Responses) (Note: I’m not an expert in Orthodox or Catholic theological spectrums, so will limit this discussion to the Protestant scene). Non-Catholic/Orthodox ‘Christians’ can roughly be put into about ten theological categories. They are (from left to right): ‘radical liberal’ (eg. Cupitt), ‘liberal’ (Tillich, Robinson, Kung, Spong), […]