Simon Nightingale on BBC Radio Shropshire

The Mike Hough memorial trophy held by Carol and SimonSimon Nightingale, Chair of Shropshire Humanist Group, spoke on BBC Radio Shropshire’s Sunday morning “Faith and Ethics” program. He talked on the sin of certainty, referring to Stephen Cherry’s most interesting and witty book “The Dark Side of the Soul”. He also talked about the humanist show garden that won a trophy and top gold medal at Shrewsbury Flower Show, and about humanist books in schools.

To hear it go to http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p059xc5r#play and listen on the time line from about 1.19.00 to 1.27.30. This is available for a limited time.

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21 September meeting: The ups and downs of ‘doing good’ – lessons from Bwindi, Uganda

The story of Omushana, Sunshine for Children – a small charity based in Shrewsbury and helping children in southwest Uganda. This illustrated talk will include observations and anecdotes (serious and amusing) on the pluses and minuses of charity and Fair Trade projects in the area. The talk will be given by Gillian Castle, who is a Shrewsbury resident and runs the charity.

Thursday 21 September at 7.30 pm, University Centre Shrewsbury, Guildhall, Frankwell Quay, Shrewsbury SY3 8HQ.

Telford talk: An introduction to Humanism on 21 July

Shropshire Humanist Group is sponsoring a talk about Humanism on Friday 21st July at 7.30 pm at Meeting Point House at Telford Shopping Centre, Southwater Square, Telford TF3 4HS. It will be presented by Dr Simon Nightingale, Chair of Shropshire Humanist Group.

The talk is an introduction for anyone interested in humanism, whether or not they call themselves a humanist. Humanists are those who believe that it is possible to lead a good life and be a good person without religion, and anyone favouring that view will find areas of common interest. Those with religious faith who are interested in learning more of a rapidly growing, influential non-religious world view are most welcome. Teachers of Religious Education may find the talk helpful and informative. Tea/coffee/biscuits available afterwards.

This talk will be followed by a course on humanism, consisting of six weekly 2-hour sessions beginning on Wednesday 27 September for 6 weeks, also at Meeting Point House. Members of the public are welcome to enrol for the course. There is a limit on numbers and there will be a small charge. Full details are here.

Humanists believe one can lead a good life and be a good person without religion. Humanists UK is the national charity working on behalf of non-religious people who seek to live ethical and fulfilling lives on the basis of reason and humanity. Dr Nightingale, a retired consultant neurologist from the Royal Shrewsbury Hospital, has been working for humanism for some years, conducting humanist funerals and weddings. He is the humanist representative on the Shrewsbury SACRE – the Local Authority committee that oversees Religious Education and Collective Worship in our Shropshire state schools and a member of the Shrewsbury Interfaith Forum. Currently he is chair of the Shropshire Humanist Group, the organisation that has arranged this talk.

Meeting Point House is near Telford Shopping Centre, and 10-15 minutes walk from Train and Bus Stations. Brown Elm car park is nearby. There is wheelchair access.

15 June meeting: Blasphemy and freedom of expression – a matter of life and death, by Paul Sturges

Professor Paul Sturges OBE, Emeritus Professor of Library Studies at Loughborough University

Professor Sturges’ talk will range over the history of the offence of blasphemy in relation to freedom of expression, with examples from some different parts of the world. The examples of blasphemy will include some that would seriously offend religious believers. There will also be accounts of hangings, lashings and horrible murders by people enraged by blasphemy. He will contrast blasphemy laws and their consequences, with laws and international statements on freedom of expression.  In the process he will attempt to draw useful distinctions between critical comment, satire, offensive speech and publication, and incitement to hatred, whilst stressing the value of good manners and consideration for others.

University Centre Shrewsbury, Guildhall, Frankwell Quay, Shrewsbury SY3 8HQ, at 7.30 pm on Thursday 15 June.

18 May: Alison Patrick of the Unitarian Church in Shrewsbury: Unitarian? What’s that?

On Thursday 18 May, Alison Patrick will tell us about Unitarianism.

Unitarianism is a faith with no creed or doctrine. It has its roots in the Judaeo Christian tradition and has evolved to encompass a range which spans liberal Christianity to religious humanism and earth centred spirituality. The first identified Unitarian churches and meeting houses, including Shrewsbury, emerging in the 18th century but the origins of the faith go back further. We’ll look at the history of the Unitarian movement which includes historic figures Iike Joseph Priestley, Josiah Wedgwood and Elizabeth Gaskell, at the interesting stories of Shrewsbury Unitarian Church, and at some of the beliefs and activities of Unitarians today. I look forward to discussing and comparing with Humanist approaches.

University Centre Shrewsbury, Guildhall, Frankwell Quay, Shrewsbury SY3 8HQ at 7.30 pm

Ludlow and Marches Humanists, 18 April: The crisis in Shropshire’s NHS

Gill George, Chair of the campaign to defend our local NHS, will talk about the issues and what can be done to combat the threat to our much valued and needed health services.

Tuesday 18 April 2017, 7.30pm, at The Friends Meeting House, St Mary’s Lane, Ludlow SY8 1DZ. All welcome. For more information call 01568 770282 or email: rocheforts@tiscali.co.uk.

Simon Nightingale on BBC Radio 3, 2 April: listen

Simon Nightingale did a short talk on distributive justice, referring to John Rawls, in Shropshire Radio’s Sunday morning “Faith and Ethics” program.

To hear it go to http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p04wtj7c#play and listen on the time line from 1.18.15 to 1.23.50.

He then talked about the recent problems of the neurology service at the Royal Shrewsbury Hospital until 1.27.00

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