City Cleric's Life a Study in Unity; Clare Short
I have just read the autobiography of a famous Birmingham resident, the Rev Professor John Hick. I have known him since I worked at Affor in Lozells in the mid-70s. But no matter how well you know someone, you never know their whole life story. I recommend the autobiography to all.
He was born in Scarborough in a family that used to be based in shipping. He had a religious experience when he was 18 and became a fundamentalist, evangelical Christian. He gave up his training in law, which he did not enjoy, and went to Edinburgh to train to be a minister of religion. Then came the war and he decided it was time for people to find ways of resolving their conflicts without war. He refused to fight and instead served with the Friends' Ambulance Unit alongside others who went on to high achieving careers in politics, the BBC, the Church and academia.
John has written many books and worked and lectured in the philosophy of religion in universities across the world. But he has also travelled a long way in his personal thinking as he reflected more and more deeply about the way in which the different people of the world honour and worship their God.
In 1970, he joined with other faith leaders in objecting to the apartheid South African team coming to Birmingham to play cricket. A demonstration of all faiths was organised and because of protests across the country, the tour was cancelled. The faith groups decided that there was lots that they needed to do together and so established Affor. …