After fifty years of civil war with the north South Sudan became independent from Sudan in 2011. Peace was short lived. In 2013 fighting broke out between the two main tribes and between the President (Dinka tribe) and Vice President (Nuer tribe). Repeated efforts to resolve the crisis have failed and over a million South Sudanese … More South Sudan – the world’s newest country
Maria’s story is dedicated to the women of South Sudan, who have loved their families through conflict, separation and famine.
The giant figure of tribalism strides across central Africa scattering families and leaving children vulnerable. Maria, trafficked to the UK, meets Jane, a charity worker striving to free victims and fight exploitation. Together they renovate a house where damaged lives find hope, and in doing so each discovers love, family and a new life.
I love Margaret Atwood’s opening sentence of a chapter where she says ‘The only way you can write the truth is to assume that what you set down will never be read.’ (The Blind Assassin – The steamer trunk) That is so true. The minute I start thinking about a reader, or preferably, several, I have … More How to write the truth.
Niek’s story of the work of ATD Fourth World in Dar es Salaam is inspiring and moving. His descriptions evoke the sites and smells of African street markets. He tells the story of vendors in the fish market; and the young men who live on the beach and are forced to bury themselves in the … More Des pailles dans le sable – Straws in the sand. The inspiring story of the work of ATD Fourth World with some of the world’s poorest in Tanzania.
The city is busy; travellers are arriving from every direction and there is nowhere left to stay. The towns people are frantically busy dealing with the needs of those who have already booked in. On the hills around the city shepherds watch, too poor to be part of the bustle below – over looked, under … More Who are the shepherds today? Where are they?
Livingstones bookshop and community hub, Fleet, Hampshire
Winter – the days are short, the trees are bare and a mild autumn has ended abruptly. Shakespeare ‘ s poem ‘When Icicles Hang’ evokes the harshness of the season, and gives an insight into domestic life in Shakespeare ‘ s time The week has as felt wintry in the UK political sphere as in … More In winter bare trees and shrubs bear the nubs of next year’s growth – the promise that Spring will return.
Last week my community choir sang in an Armistice Pilgrimage. We went to seven local churches and a school during the week offering a selection of poems, anthems, and hymns to commemorate Armistice. Our director had arranged a beautiful programme; and tears were shed during the performances. In addition to singing I was asked to read a poem by Wilfred Owen called the Send-off. … More Lest we forget
CMS Africa Conference
On my way to Westminster today to meet Baroness Lister for the launch of a film by ATD Fourth World. The Roles we Play: a model of genuine participation