A little bit about the person...
Husband, father and grandfather and loving every minute of it!
A long term student of the rhyme and reason behind the contemporary world, most seasons of my life, and especially the last seven years, have been intertwined with academic research as a theologian and social commentator. For this reason I love the internet which has made this kind of motivation for living so much easier than it used to be!
But I do most of my thinking on foot. I am passionate about hill walking and head out most days, come wind, come weather, with a little notebook in my pocket and a head full of ideas. By the time I return they have usually taken shape, sometimes still discernible as scribbles on wet paper (we live in the foothills of the Cumbrian mountains and when it rains, it does it well.)
I abhor ivory towers! I am a practitioner by nature and only enjoy ideas for the difference they can make to ordinary lives. I have travelled widely, love cultural difference but hate injustice and endemic poverty.
And I revel in the uniqueness of people. I have received so much by journeying with others, the more different from me the better, whether (usually!) younger, of different ethnicity or gender. I have always enjoyed the two-way flow of relationship in any mentoring relationship and am very much at home with the post-modern preference for relational coaching.
Cultural and social changes fascinate me; the factors which initiate and guide them, the direction they take and the drive of the powerful to annexe them energise my study. And engaging in these discussions and this broad context with men and women of good heart and leadership skill is always a joy and privilege. It gives hope and faith that historical inequalities can be addressed and the future be rewritten with today’s poor at the centre of tomorrow’s opportunities.
A little bit about my experience...
I began my working life teaching small children, but research study at university level has been a driving force during substantial segments of my adult life
- I have a BA in English
- A Masters in International Literature and Society
- Early doctoral research in Sociology
- A PhD in Religious Studies as the result of my doctoral research in the sovereign power structure of the West and the possibility of a kenotic alternative or kenarchy.
- I am the author of a variety of published books and articles, the most recent of these being Church, Gospel & Empire: How the Politics of Sovereignty Impregnated the West. Eugene, Oregon: Wipf and Stock 2011; The Fall of the Church. Eugene, Oregon: Wipf and Stock 2013; and Discovering Kenarchy. Eugene, Oregon: Wipf and Stock 2014 (edited with Julie Tomlin Arram).
- I am an Honorary Research Fellow in the Lancaster University Department of Politics, Philosophy and Religion (PPR) where I am an occasional visiting lecturer.
But all this is in the context of practical involvement as a self employed consultant in training and leadership, including
Personal coaching of senior executives and leadership team training and development
- In business
- In churches
- In the voluntary sector
- In youth and community work
Organisational governance and development
- As chair of directors
- As council of reference member, various charitable organisations
Reconciliation and peacemaking at a national and international level
- External Partnerships Co-ordinator of the Richardson Institute for Peace Studies
- Member of the council of the Europe-Africa Restoration Partnership
- Formerly facilitator of peacemaking teams among Aboriginal peoples of Australia and Native Canadians
- Core member of peacemaking delegations to Zimbabwe, Gabon and the Democratic Republic of Congo
Past experience of research and resourcing of youth and student work, including
- DfES funded Research in Belief and Values Systems among inner-city young people
- Developing new learning modules for under-achieving teenagers
- Developing community initiatives with London inner city schools
- Mentoring in detached youth work
- University student work: belief and values training and development UK and overseas
- Editor of national Inter-University Magazine for Christian students
- Coaching the development of student support across 11 nations of South Pacific
Coaching In Communities’ Liaison, for example
- Pioneering 'community audits' with voluntary sector, building communication and effective voluntary involvement
- Mentoring in inter-church and church and community relationships in the multi-ethnic context of 3 London boroughs.
- Mentoring in reconciliation between ethnic groupings, dealing with perceived injustices in many of Britain’s ex-colonial nations, invited generally by indigenous Christian leaders to engage invariably with senior government officials.