Northern Ireland

Image via /

In an about-face that has surprised many of his allies, a prominent gay rights campaigner has criticized a court’s decision in Northern Ireland to charge a bakery with discrimination for refusing to ice a cake with a slogan in support of same-sex marriage. Peter Tatchell of Great Britain, a leading voice on LGBT issues, came to the defense of the Ashers Bakery in Belfast with a column published on Feb. 1 in the Guardian.

Lisa Sharon Harper 07-14-2014
Irish countryside, Bildagentur Zoonar GmbH /

Irish countryside, Bildagentur Zoonar GmbH /

“If, as Christians, we believe that peace is rooted in Christ, then how we build that peace within us, in one way, is through the disciplines of solitude and silence; through spending time with God. Solitude is not necessarily extremely easy process, because it will bring to the fore all sorts of things that are within us. We will get to know ourselves in a fuller way. In solitude, where you know that God is with you, you can just be with God, and there is no need for a mask. Also, your humility might grow because you will see yourself as you really are — in a way that needs to be healed and transformed.”

Rose Marie Berger 06-18-2013
World map, Feraru Nicolae /

World map, Feraru Nicolae /

In the green hills of County Fermanagh, Northern Ireland, the world’s leading developed nations agreed on Tuesday to make individuals and companies pay the taxes that they owe. With the release this morning of the Lough Erne Declaration the G8 countries plan to implement greater tax collection internationally through fairer tax policies, greater financial transparency, and open trade.

The G8 plans to clamp down on tax-evaders and require shell companies — often used to take advantage of tax loopholes or to invest money anonymously —to identify their effective owners or primary beneficiaries. Developing countries, reported CNN, lose more in tax avoidance than they receive in aid. With the protocols agreed to today, indebted poor countries will be given access to the global information they need to collect the taxes they are owed.

Some anti-poverty campaigners describe the G8 deal as a historic achievement.

Paige Brettingen 05-01-2013

BELFAST, Northern Ireland — When the Republic of Ireland apologized to the wayward girls who were sent to the Magdalene laundries for hard work and no pay, Teresa Bell felt encouraged. Surely, she thought, the government of Northern Ireland would do the same.

Nearly three months later, she’s still waiting.

Bell was one of thousands of young girls who were sent to the Magdalene workhouses run by Roman Catholic nuns when she got pregnant at age 16. She worked long hours washing clothes with no pay and little rest; after giving birth, her daughter was put in an orphanage.

Bell never recovered from the shame.

Cathleen Falsani 09-27-2012

God Girl's New Favorite Thing for Sept. 27, 2012: Northern Ireland's Rend Collective Experiment

I love music. I love Jesus. And I love all things Irish.

So when a friend introduced me to Rend Collective Experiment last year, chances were pretty good that I'd vibe with this band from the North of Ireland (Bangor, to be specific.)

But ... and this was a BIG but ... my musical proclivities, while decidedly ecclectic, generally steer clear of contemporary Christian worship music (especially if it's billed as such.) When it comes to having a musical worship experience, give me Chris Martin and his bandmates, or those other four greying boyos from a little farther south in the Republic of Ireland.

Without putting too fine a point on it, Rend Collective are very much a contemporary Christian worship band. But they aren't what you're thinking.

Neither painfully earnest nor woefully twee. They're fun and funky — earthy, too, in a grab-your-banjo-and-trilby-hat kind of a way.

Cathleen Falsani 09-27-2012

"High nigh br-eye-n, K-eye"? Come again? Rend Collective and Bart Millard (of the band MercyMe) give us a lesson in how to speak Northern Irish.

Jim Wallis 06-20-2011
Yesterday was Father's Day. As a favor to a dear friend, I did a speaking event on Saturday night away from home, and planned on returning very early in the morning for Sunday and Father's Day.
Gareth Higgins 06-16-2010

For 14 people in my homeland, northern Ireland -- a place whose divisions are so fully on the surface that we still can't agree what to call it (the reason I spell it with a small 'n') -- the clocks stopped on January 30, 1972.

Aaron Taylor 11-20-2009
Last week at the Innovative Evangelism Conference, I got a chance to hear Dinesh D'Souza speak to a standing room only crowd.
Gareth Higgins 10-20-2009
I know it's been a week and a bit, which in the contemporary mode suggests that ancient history has already passed under the bridge since the Nobel Committee announced its decision, but I wanted to
Lisa Sharon Harper 09-18-2009
Tea-totaling party animals are crying the mantra of the Ghosts of Conservatives-past, "Blankety blank blank will change our American way of life!" Now all the president's men and women -- especiall
Gareth Higgins 08-12-2009
I have friends in the UK who are doctors, men and women who work in intense, busy careers. Like many salaried positions, things get exponentially better the longer you're in the system.
Gareth Higgins 08-10-2009
Regular readers will know that in the past year, I embarked on a genuinely life-altering journey. I emigrated to the United States, got married, and now make my home in North Carolina.
Gareth Higgins 08-04-2009
Let's get one thing straight: I have no idea what war is really like.
Gareth Higgins 07-14-2009
Sometime in the spring of 1974, my world was somewhat disturbed by the event of my conception, in Belfast, Northern Ireland.
Gareth Higgins 05-28-2009
A couple of weeks ago on Glenn Beck's talk radio show, a woman called in to suggest that because President Obama appears to be raising the tax rate to around the same as what it was under President
Apricot Irving 03-17-2009
Two years ago, I celebrated St. Patrick's Day in Ireland with my parents, my husband, and my one-year-old son.
Gareth Higgins 03-09-2009
On Saturday night, two young soldiers preparing to go to Afghanistan were murdered in Antrim, Northern Ireland. Four other people, including two men delivering pizzas, were injured.
Jim Wallis 02-26-2009
While at Yale last weekend, I had the opportunity to eat breakfast with a bright group of young students. One of the topics we touched on was interfaith dialogue.