Rev Alexander Webster

The Kirk, cashing in pensions, the Baby Boomers inheritance tax, and the bad maths of student fees

In 1744, two Church of Scotland ministers, Robert Wallace and Alexander Webster, considered the consequences of premature death among their fellow clergy, writes Peter Wilby. They decided that dependants could be provided with annual incomes or annuities if ministers paid yearly premiums during their lifetimes and the money was invested. They just had to get […]

Karina McTeague

Karina McTeague given key position at new City financial watchdog

Former Halifax Bank of ­Scotland risk specialist Karina McTeague has been hired by one of the new City regulators to oversee its supervision of the UK’s retail banks. The Financial Conduct ­Authority has recruited the Edinburgh University law graduate from Lloyds Banking Group, where she has spent the past two years as its chief risk […]

Justin Welby, Archbishop of Canterbury

Church of England to develop credit unions network

The Church of England plans to develop a network of credit unions to challenge payday lending and force the loan company Wonga out of existence, according to Justin Welby, the Archbishop of Canterbury. In an interview with Total Politics magazine, Welby said the church planned to create “credit unions that are both engaged in their […]

Justin Welby, Archbishop of Canterbury

Archbishop’s crusade to cast out payday lenders

The Archbishop of Canterbury is to make a direct attack on payday lenders and loan sharks with a “10-year” campaign to drive them out of business. A team of experts at Lambeth Palace has drawn up proposals to put the Church of England’s considerable assets to work expanding the credit union movement. Small, local lenders […]

 Church of England backed RBS bid may mean a new UK ethical bank

Church of England backed RBS bid may mean a new UK ethical bank

The Church of England is helping to fund a consortium that will bid for hundreds of branches that are being sold by the bailed-out bank, the Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS). This could lead to a new ethical bank challenging the established banking names in the UK. The Church Commissioners, who are in charge of […]

Fr Matthew Despard

Amazon website drops priest’s best-selling book featuring claims about gay bullies in Catholic Church

A whistle-blowing churchman’s best-selling book featuring explosive claims about gay bullies in the Catholic priesthood has been pulled by web giants Amazon. ‘Priesthood in Crisis’ by Father Matthew Despard was released in the wake of the Cardinal Keith O’Brien scandal. The shocking account – which accuses church leaders of covering up powerful homosexual cliques in […]

Wine cellar in the Scots Hotel, Tiberias

Call for Church of Scotland to sell Israeli hotel

The Kirk’s continued ownership of the Scots Hotel in Tiberias, on the Sea of Galilee, was questioned, with a call to carry out a strategic review on the church’s involvement in it. Commissioner Joe Elliott said that it was “bizarre” that the Kirk should be in the business of running a five star hotel, that […]

Dr Alison Elliot

Lairds criticised for pocketing wind farm subsidies

The leader of the Scottish ­Government review of landownership yesterday pledged to examine ways of redistributing the cash wealthy lairds make from wind farms to benefit the less-advantaged. Alison Elliot, chair of the Land Reform Review Group (LRRG), said the issue would be investigated amid concerns that aristo­crats are benefiting from the renewables revolution while […]

Max Weber

The Protestant work ethic: Heaven knows I’m miserable now

“Hard work never killed anyone,” goes the joke, “but why take the chance?” For those possessed of the much-vaunted Protestant work ethic, however, it isn’t a joke; without work they are unhappier than those of other religions. Well-being levels among unemployed individuals are 40 per cent lower in Protestant societies than in other countries, according […]


Oil firms urged to help ‘starving’

An Aberdeen pastor has urged the oil industry and local businesses to provide more training or handouts after being forced to open a food bank to help “starving” people. Barry Church, pastor of Seaton Community Church, is “horrified” by the poverty in the oil capital of Europe, particularly in the community of Seaton on the […]

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