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The Church itself contributed to this malaise, in Prochaska's phrase: the bishops blew out the candles to see better in the dark. However, the blame is more correctly focused in his book on the attitudes of the welfare state, not least the dirigiste paternalism that has helped produce the shambles of parts of the modern public sector; although the nature of contemporary civil society as a whole also bears much of the responsibility.


Prochaska criticises Thatcher for failing to give more support for charitable donations and for carrying forward the very collectivist agenda she disavowed, and argues that it was not until, in the s, charity came to be elided with notions of civil society and community service, that it became more palatable to former critics, such as Gordon Brown who, in , decreed charity as: a sad and seedy competition for public pity. Instead, as Prochaska points out p. His book is an arresting one for those concerned with public policy today, although that is not his subject. He makes clear the strength of an associational society, but is appropriately cautious about considering the extent to which it can be re-created, not least given the nature of contemporary religious culture.

Christian Ethics and Economics: Voluntary Organisations and Alternative Trade

In Exeter, the churches share out the mission of providing a nightly soup-kitchen for the homeless, irrespective of the religious commitment of the latter. The churches can only do so much, but, as an non-believer, I am much impressed by their efforts.

David Cameron is correct to draw attention to the issue. Whether confessionally-based systems of social care and education are sensible, given sectarian tendencies, not least in parts of Northern Ireland as well as British Islam, is a reasonable question, but reliance on the state alone is no solution. Use the buttons below to change the style and font size of our site.

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Display Functionalities. CrossRef Google Scholar. Piff, D. Stancato, S. Mendoza-Denton, and D. Hicks and M. Eerdmans Publishing, Lee, A. Leyshon and C. Williams eds. Nickoloff ed. This paper was later reworked into his influential book Theology of Liberation: History, Politics and Salvation Regan, Why are They Poor? Korten and R.

Sam Reader Forum | Did the welfare state undermine religion in the UK?

Adams, Who Profi ts? Oxford: Lion Publishing, , p. Barnett, N. Clarke, P. Cloke and A.

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