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2012060320120603 (R4)

As fears of civil war in Syria escalate Samira asks Fergal Keane have we seen this before and can comparisons be drawn with Bosnia and Rwanda?

BBC School Reporters from St Paul's Cathedral School have been talking to 96-year-old Maurice Sills who helps out at their school and in the Cathedral library. He gave his reflections on the Queen, the Jubilee and St Pauls.

More details have emerged this week in the Vati-leaks scandal; the pope's butler was arrested amidst allegations that he didn't act alone and that a shadowy group of Cardinals were behind the leaks. Robert Mickens reports from Rome.

Amid all the pomp & ceremony of the Diamond Jubilee it's easy to forget the religious significance of the monarch and the Queen's personal Christian faith. Charles Carroll has been looking at 'what the Queen believes'

Richard Hoskins, author of The Boy in the River, tells Samira how his work on a ritual sacrifice case has lead to him becoming one of the lead experts in African tribal religion.

Sunday explore the historic and changing relationship between Queen and Church with a special report by Trevor Barnes.

Scotland's first woman bishop is consecrated on June 7th. Exclusive interview with Bishop Elect Helen Hamilton, of the Open Episcopal Church about her upcoming position.

As the dust settles after two amendments to women bishops legislation left many 'angry and disappointed' we hear from both sides of the debate and assess the chances of the legislation passing as was originally hoped at the July General Synod. Discussion with Bishop Pete Broadbent and Judith Maltby, Chaplain of Corpus Christie College Oxford.

2012061020120610 (R4)

As Russia continues to resist calls for foreign intervention in Syria, Edward speaks to Ellen Barry of the New York Times about the influence the Russian Orthodox Church has over Russian foreign policy.

As Three Faith's Forum celebrates 15 years of interfaith work with young people - Trevor Barnes reports on their continuing influence.

Last month the Vatican censured the Leadership Conference of Women Religious, saying they were pursuing a radical feminist agenda. On Tuesday they meet with Vatican officials in Rome to put their case. Edward speaks to Sister Joan Chittister, who is no stranger to Vatican censure, to reflect on recent events.

The 50th Eucharistic Congress comes to Ireland on Sunday. Edward speaks to William Crawley about how the congress is being received in a country still reeling from the child abuse scandals.

In Turkey's largest city, Istanbul, a pioneering project has been launched to make its mosques more women friendly. Dorian Jones reports.

Ahead of England's first Euro 2012 game, Edward talks to the Rector of the Ukrainian Catholic University, Fr Borys Gudziak about antisemitism and racism in Poland and the Ukraine.

Will the criminalisation of forced marriages help victims or force the practice underground? Edward explores the issues with Tehmina Kazi of British Muslims for Secular Democracy and Dr Aisha Gill, Lecturer in Criminology.

An announcement of a bailout for Spain's stricken banks is expected over the weekend. Edward examines the human cost of the crisis and the role the Church is playing with Domènec Melé, Professor of Business Ethics and Chaplain at a Barcelona University.

20120715

A newly ordained Chinese Catholic bishop, Father Thaddeus Ma Daqin, has disappeared from public view after announcing his resignation from the Chinese Catholic Patriotic Association during his ordination ceremony. It's believed authorities have confined him to his seminary. William gets the latest from John Sudworth in Shanghai.

Alom Shaha talks to us about the Young Atheists Handbook and his journey from Bangladeshi Muslim to atheist science teacher.

France has some 90 000 churches and nearly all of them belong to the government. But now an increasing number of local authorities say they can't afford to maintain their churches and are voting to tear them down. John Laurenson reports.

There was more destruction of ancient Islamic Sufi shrines in Timbuktu this week. William hears from Dr Shamil Jeppie of the Timbuktu Manuscript project.

The High Court ruled against the Portsmouth Diocese this week saying that the Catholic Church can be held liable for the wrongdoings of its priests. Joshua Rozenburg explains the wider implications.

In light of new research this week, Church Action on Poverty is calling on UK churches to lead the way in guaranteeing a Living Wage for all. Alan Thornton from the charity explains more and Mickey Price a 45 year old divorcee explains how he survives on the minimum wage.

What went wrong for the Church of England's women bishops legislation and where does it go from here? Trevor Barnes reports in the aftermath of last Monday's adjourned vote.

Melinda Gates admits she struggled with her Catholic beliefs before committing to spending hundreds of millions of dollars on contraception and family planning. We discuss what difference this could make with Dermot Grenham from the LSE and Oxfam's Kathleen Spencer Chapman.

20120722

The majority of Muslims being physically attacked, harassed or intimidated because of their faith are women, according to interim results from the UK's first ever 'official' anti-Muslim violence helpline, Kevin Bocquet reports.

Father Nadim Nasser is the only Syrian priest in the Church of England. He speaks to Edward about the fears of the Christian community in Syria.

The Bishop of Durham has been appointed to the Banking Standards Committee. He tells Edward what the cross party enquiry is hoping to achieve.

The British Library announced a project to digitise some 25,000 pages of Mediaeval Arabic manuscripts this week. Edward takes a look with the head of the British Library Qatar Project Oliver Urquhart-Irvine.

Matthew Kalman talks to Edward from Jerusalem about the withdrawal of Kadima from the coalition government and continuing controversy about Orthodox Jews not paying tax or serving in the Israeli army.

Next week the international Aids Conference takes place in Washington. Former health minister Lord Fowler is attending and speaks to Edward from the US capital.

The Vatican bank still has a long way to go in terms of financial transparency according to a report from the Council of Europe. David Willey explains the story behind the scandal plagued bank.

Trevor Barnes reports from the Salvation Army's Hadleigh Training Centre ahead of the Olympic Games. Hadleigh Farm is the host venue for the mountain biking tournament and has been in Salvation Army hands for 122 years.

Sunday morning religious news and current affairs programme, presented by Edward Stourton.

20120729

Sunday morning religious news and current affairs programme, presented by Edward Stourton.

As the Olympic Games get underway Trevor Barnes joins a community festival in East London organised by churches to ask what it all means to local people now it's finally arrived.

Tony Blair 'does God' in conversation with the Archbishop of Canterbury and the Daily Telegraph's Charles Moore, in the last in the series of Westminster Faith Debates.

Would you 'pray-on-the-go?' Sunday presenter Edward Stourton tests out a prototype multi-faith prayer booth designed by Manchester University.

Olympic champion, founder of the US Council for Sports Chaplaincy and contemporary gospel recording artist Madeline Manning Mimms talks faith, spirituality and sport with Edward.

Should mixed faith marriage be opposed or accommodated within the Jewish faith? Edward talks to Rabbi Jonathan Romain and Rabbi Alan Plancey following the lifting of the ban on blessing mixed faith marriages.

Matt Wells reports from New York on the world's first televangelist, Archbishop Fulton Sheen, and his journey toward sainthood.

Gay marriage got the green light in Scotland this week but where does it leave the Scottish Catholic Church whose leadership has made headlines because of its position on homosexuality? Edward discusses the issues with Professor John Haldane.

20120805

Kevin Bocquet reports on a law dating back to the dissolution of the monasteries which could mean thousands of 21st century home owners are liable for the cost of church repairs.

Relations between the Vatican and China have reached an all-time low over the appointment of Bishops to the Chinese church. David Willey reports from Beijing and Rome.

40 years after the expulsion of the Ugandan Asians by Idi Amin, one of those who fled the country for Britain talks to Jane Little about the role of race and faith in the rebuilding of communities.

Over 200 British households have hosted families of Olympic athletes through the Church of England's 'More than Gold' campaign. Trevor Barnes dropped in on one to see how they were getting on.

A year on from the riots, as the Olympics continue to grip Britain, the mood of the nation could not be more different. But have the underlying causes been addressed? Professor James Arthur and Christian youth worker, Patrick Reagan, discuss.

Punk, politics and the religion - what does the Moscow based 'Pussy Riot' trial say about the direction of the Russian Orthodox Church and its relations with President Putin?

A British historian describes the dilemmas facing Aleppo's large Christian community.

20120812

The story of a missionary who ended up training many of the Kenyan Olympic athletes.

On this week's programme Brother Colm O'Connell talks to Jane Little about how he went to Kenya as a missionary and ended up training many of the Olympic Kenyan athletes including 800m gold medal winner David Rudisha.

This week the Church of England announced it was disinvesting from News Corp, Andrew Brown, Secretary to the Church Commissioners explains why.

Today David Cameron and other world leaders will gather for what has been called the 'Hunger Summit' at which they will focus their attention on drought, poverty and malnutrition. Laura Taylor, Head of Policy for Tearfund, talks to Jane Little about what she thinks this summit may or may not achieve.

Dylan Winter visits Bhaktivedanta Manor to join in the Hindu Janmashtami Festival this week and hear the concerns from devotees about the pollution of the sacred Yamuna river which flows past the Taj Mahal and other sacred sites.

As the Olympic Games reaches its final day Trevor Barnes reports on whether it's legacy will have a real impact on the local residents.

The Law Society has announced the sale of ancient manuscripts from the Mendham Collection. A collection of religious and polemical writings which date back to the 13th centuries. Jane Little talks to Dr Alixe Bovey who explains why the decision has upset the University of Kent and Canterbury Cathedral who do not want to see the collection broken up.

As the month of Ramadan continues, Dorian Jones reports from Turkey on the row over the amount of money being spent on Iftar, the evening meal that ends each day of fasting which in some 5 star hotels is costing $100 a person.

20120819

This week Patriarch Kirill of Moscow, head of the Russian Orthodox Church is visiting Poland to meet senior Polish Roman Catholic bishops to sign a document of reconciliation and in the aftermath of the "Pussy riot" trial what's the significance of the protest? Peter Van Dyke reports from Moscow

Beyond the bright lights of midtown Manhattan, a dozen representatives from different churches, were introduced to a variety of Christian, Jewish and Muslim communities around the city, and the different ways in which they worship the same god. Matt Wells reports.

A Gallup Poll shows Africa as the most devout region of the World while the USA is becoming less religious. Professor Douglas Davies explores the findings

Plans have been drawn up to urge communities and churches to work closely together to prevent "ritual abuse" in cases such as Victoria Climbie and Kristy Bamu. Simon Bass from Churches Child Protection and Bishop Joe Aldred spokesperson for Black Churches discuss.

Interview with Eva Loeffler, daughter of Sir Ludwig Guttman, father of the Paralympic Games and how his Jewish faith influenced his work and life.

On the 400th anniversary of the Pendle Witch Trials Kevin Bocquet explores the history and joins a commemorative walk.

Is religious belief causing sick children to suffer needlessly? We hear from Jeremy Howat, the father of a child who was written off by doctors but survived, followed by a discussion with Rev Jim Linthicum - Great Ormond St Hospital Chaplain & Dr Andrew Ferguson, Christian Medical Fellowship.

Jane Little presents the Sunday morning religious news and current affairs programme.

20120826

With a search for God throwing up nearly two billion internet hits, this special edition of Sunday explores the impact of the internet on religion.

Trevor Barnes turns virtual religious tourist as he explores the digital world in search of God.

From Tweeting to computer gaming, we hear how the internet and technology is transforming the tradition church service.

Kevin Bocquet reports on the transformative effect of the internet on the Muslim world.

And how is morality defined and shaped in the globally vast and digitally distant world of cyberspace?

To debate some of these issues William Crawley is joined by the 'Digitalnun', Sister Catherine Wybourne, the blogging Bishop, Alan Wilson and Vicky Beeching whose award winning blog ponders the line between spirituality, philosophy and technology.

Edward Stourton explores the impact of the internet on religion.

20120902

Sunday morning religious news and current affairs programme, presented by Edward Stourton.

Islamic leaders in Pakistan back an 11 year old girl accused of desecrating the Quran - Journalist Shahid Saidullah says the move will make no difference

In Ghana when a women is accused of witchcraft she will be driven out of her home and usually end up in a witch camp with hundreds of other women who then have to rely on aid from charities to survive. Kati Whittaker reports from one of these camps and Edward also speaks to Adwoa Kluviste - Ghana Country Director for Action Aid.

Some call him "the American Pope" - the most powerful and charismatic church leader of the modern era. But for others, Cardinal-Archbishop Timothy Dolan of New York, is presiding over a disastrous showdown with the White House over the Health Care Bill, that could lead to an irrevocable split between the conservative and liberal wings of the American church. Matt Wells reports

Ahead of the European Court hearing of four Christian religious discrimination cases, Joshua Rozenberg unpacks possible outcomes and implications for the British legal system. Is the hearing a good thing for religious freedoms in Britain? Andrew Marsh from the Christian Legal centre tells Edward why they have taken the cases to Europe.

A discussion on how the language and ideas expressed in the New Testament affect our perceptions of disability. Edward talks to Professor John Hull and Professor John Swinton.

A "Profoundly negative culture" within the Diocese of Chichester led to two decades of Child protection failure says a report this week. Bishop Paul Butler Head of Child Protection in the Church of England talks to Edward about what has been learnt from the Chichester report.

20120909

Sunday morning religious news and current affairs programme.

20121014

The Israeli Prime Minister was forced into calling early elections this week. Matthew Kahlman speaks to Edward about the role of the religious parties in the Knesset and why they would not support Netanyahu's budgetary plans.

The German Cabinet supports a law making it clear that circumcision on religious grounds is legal. Ed speaks to Stephen Evans about the background to the case and why it caused such anger amongst Muslims and Jews in Germany.

This week is the fiftieth anniversary of the Second Vatican Council. It was only the third full council in 500 years and it transformed the Roman Catholic Church. Edward Stourton reports on what happened in Rome between 1962 and 1965.

Edward speaks to Father Brian D'arcy and Archbishop Vincent Nicholls both of whom were studying for the priesthood when the Second Vatican Council began and have lived their clerical lives in its aftermath.

Christopher Lamb visits two Catholic parishes in London who have very different interpretations of Vatican II.

What is the legacy of Vatican 2 today and does the church need a Vatican 3? Ed discusses with former Tablet Editor John Wilkins, Jack Valero of Opus Dei, Feminist Theologian Tina Beattie and Ian Linden from the Tony Blair faith foundation.

Sunday morning religious news and current affairs programme.