Articles 

Swedish town launches controversial £21 begging permit

From The Guardian: A Swedish town has become the first in the country to introduce an official begging permit, requiring anyone who asks for money in the street to pay SEK 250 (£21) upfront for a licence. Valid for three months, the permit can be obtained by filling in a form online or at a police station and requires a valid ID. Anyone found begging for money in Eskilstuna, west of Stockholm, without one faces a fine of up to SEK 4,000 (£342). Jimmy Jansson, a Social Democrat local councillor,…

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Articles 

The Curiosity Index (12.11.2018)

‘No Way To Prevent This,’ Says Only Nation Where This Regularly Happens For the past few years, whenever a mass shooting occurs in the US that gets wide press coverage, the satirical news site The Onion runs an article with this headline written by Jason Roeder: “‘No Way To Prevent This,’ Says Only Nation Where This Regularly Happens”. The reason they only do it when a shooting gets big coverage is that there have been 307 mass shootings so far this year and if they covered every one, about half of The Onion’s…

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Links 

The Curiosity Index (19.01.2018)

The heart of a heartless world In an interesting editorial, The Guardian talks about prayer. The bleak universe that science appears to reveal, initially random and ultimately purposeless, is not one that anyone can feel at home in. Most people do want to feel at home. Even if religion, as Marx said, is only the heart of a heartless world, those who pray are acknowledging that the world needs a heart. Some might even be led to try to help give it one. Cape Town Is Set to Run Out of Water…

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The Curiosity Index (14.12.2017)

The fire and the fury Forget Donald Trump (and I know many would like to) but here’s the real fire and fury. Few things remind us of the force and power of mother earth like a volcano. The Best Global News You (Probably) Haven’t Heard There’s been a lot of bad news this year, but this remains something worth celebrating. Japan Is Quietly Leading an Energy Revolution as Towns Move Off-Grid File this one under good news too. After the tragedy of the 2011 earthquake and tsunami, Japan is finding…

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Christian Living 

One simple way to understand God’s heart for the poor

At the start of the year Andrew Wilson laid out some questions he hoped to find better answers to during 2015. One of his questions was about getting some clarity about the issue of poverty. He noted that, the Bible talks more about poverty and justice, and less about quite a few other things, than we might expect Indeed it does. Many years ago I asked the same question. So long ago in fact, that there were no smartphones or Bible software to help me. Yet I found my method so strikingly…

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Cows, milk and poverty

I have a long-lasting attachment to the small nation of Burundi in East Africa. It is one of the poorest in the world. I’ve found that commitment to a nation in prayer, finances and support has helped keep me engaged with the poor when I become tired of all the campaigns and disasters or when my focus becomes inward not outward focused. For a great mix of evangelism and nation building initiatives I’d recommend supporting the work of Great Lakes Outreach and for regular challenge, inspiration and humour, read founder…

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Why I love giving through Kiva

One of the things I’m most enjoying about parenting is giving with my son Noah (he’s four and a bit). Working out how to do that can be fun and one of the ways we use the most is giving through Kiva. Kiva is a great example of using the power of technology to harness giving and generosity. Essentially it is a global network of micro-finance groups linked to Kiva who give out loans helping people out of poverty. Here’s how it works. Noah and I can sit at my…

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