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November 15, 2015


Kim Fabricius

Thanks, Andy. Wonderful stuff. By happy coincidence, I've just read Rowan Williams' "Reforming Punishment" in Faith in the Public Square (2012) -- which I suppose you've seen, but if not, it concludes:

"[T]he crisis in the penal system is bound up with the wider question of whether our social imagination in general is being fed by the vision of mutual responsibility. It is unhappily easy for the sceptic to suppose that the religious perspective on these matters is essentially and even exclusively about underscoring guilt and penalty. I have been trying to suggest that the most distinctive contribution such a perspective may bring is a stress on finding our adult liberty in carrying the responsibility for someone else's welfare. If at least that dimension of the religious ethic that has grown out of our tradition can be revitalized for our society, it is not only our attitudes to penal policy that will be regenerated and transformed" (p. 264).

Mutual responsibility and answerability, belonging, imagination, empathy -- these are the themes that pervade Faith in the Public Square -- and your sermon too. Thanks again.

Andy Goodliff

Thanks Kim, for the encouragement, especially from someone who knows how to craft a sermon. I had a quick glance at the Rowan piece you mention, but thanks for drawing my attention to its conclusion. I had also been trying to read an earlier piece he wrote in Theology journal, but wasn't able to get the online access required.

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