Together for the Common Good: towards a national conversation marked the launch of the book with the same title, which sets out to stimulate a wide-ranging and deep discussion about the realities and fundamental principles of modern society.
Chaired by the Lord Bishop of Winchester, Rt Rev Tim Dakin, distinguished figures in the fields of religion and politics contributed to a panel discussion. Members reflected on their impressions of the book, outlined visions for the political future and invited the audience to join the developing discussion.
“We looked at how the common good can give us a language to transcend our differences and work together for the good of all, seeking shared solutions to our major challenges,” said Andrew Bradstock, Visiting Professor in Theology, Religion and Philosophy at the University of Winchester and one of the book’s contributors. “It looks at how we, as citizens, can all play a part in building our communities and helping to create a fairer and more inclusive society than our current politics encourage.
“The common good is about doing politics on the basis of loving our neighbour. It’s less about ‘keeping up with the Joneses’ and more about making sure that the Joneses are also doing alright,” explained Andrew.
Panel members included two of the book’s contributors, Lord (Brian) Griffiths of Fforestfach, Vice-President of Goldman Sachs International and a special advisor to former Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, and Tehmina Kazi, named as one of the BBC’s 100 Women in 2013 and 2014 and Director of British Muslims for Secular Democracy.
They were joined by two ‘critical friends’ of the book – Dr Dave Landrum, Director of Advocacy at the Evangelical Alliance and former parliamentary officer for the Bible Society, and Jenny Sinclair, founder of Together for the Common Good, a project inspired by the legacy of Archbishop Derek Worlock and Jenny’s father, Bishop David Sheppard.
The book launch was hosted by the University of Winchester’s new interdisciplinary research centre, Theology and Religion in Public Life (TRiPL).
“Religion always seems to be in the news these days – from issues like faith schools and extremism to human rights and assisted dying,” explained Andrew. “The need for a better understanding of it has seldom been greater. Rooted in the University’s values, TRiPL will help to meet this need in different ways – through research, public forums, media commentary, consultancy and training.”
Together for the Common Good: towards a national conversation is edited by Nick Sagovsky and Peter McGrail and published by SCM Press.
A print-ready image of (L-R) Lord Griffiths, Jenny Sinclair, Andrew Bradstock, Dave Landrum, Bishop Tim Dakin, Vice-Chancellor Professor Joy Carter, Tehmina Kazi, and Chair of Governors Richard Wilkinson is available to download by clicking here