Religion

Infantrymen, circa 1915

The first world war’s Christian soldiers

10 December 2016 9:00 am

From a letter published under the heading ‘The religion of the ordinary soldier’, The Spectator, 23 December 1916: During a discharge…

Baby Holding Dad's Finger on Bible

Why I’m telling my son about the sky fairy

10 December 2016 9:00 am

After we were married, my husband and I went on honeymoon to Mexico. We drove across country east to west,…

Left: Maíno, 1612–14: ‘The Adoration of the Kings’ Right: ‘The Adoration of the Shepherds’

O come, let us adore this little-known Spanish painter

10 December 2016 9:00 am

Martin Gayford is dazzled by two Adorations by a little-known Spanish painter

Soldiers on the Western Front celebrating Christmas Day in a shell hole partly occupied by the grave of a comrade

The muddy, bloody origins of a treasured Christmas Eve ritual

10 December 2016 9:00 am

Alexandra Coghlan reveals the muddy, bloody origins of a treasured Christmas Eve ritual

one golden candle

Advent: a season of death, judgment, heaven and hell

26 November 2016 9:00 am

As Christmas celebrations creep earlier, we must preserve the distinctive spirit of this season

(Photo: Getty)

Inside China’s ‘secret’ churches

12 November 2016 9:00 am

Inside the ‘secret’ churches whose congregations are growing week by week

Mrs Benson and her three sons, 1884

There were none so queer as the Bensons

12 November 2016 9:00 am

The Benson family was one of the most extraordinary of Victorian England, and they certainly made sure that we have…

The prayer

Vicar, will you clean my drains?

5 November 2016 9:00 am

The things people ask for at an urban rectory

Kwame Anthony Appiah receives the National Arts and Humanities medal from President Obama, 2011 (Photo: Getty)

Will we still have the Reith Lectures in 2026?

29 October 2016 9:00 am

You may not listen to them every year. Or even to every lecture in the current series. But the survival…

Cathedral of Chichester, in the county of West Sussex

Why cathedrals are soaring

8 October 2016 9:00 am

The Church of England’s unexpected success story

What do you say to someone who is killing you?

17 September 2016 9:00 am

What do you say to someone who is killing you? It is seldom possible to decide in advance. We are…

p18-Phyllis-Schlafly-illo

Phyllis Schlafly: American feminism's great anti-heroine

10 September 2016 9:00 am

This extraordinarily gifted woman saw off a constitutional amendment on the very verge of its passing, and helped create Reagan's majority

New-bionic-arm

Will there be free will in a brave new bioengineered world?

3 September 2016 9:00 am

The idea that death may prove a mere ‘technical problem’ in the future just makes me want to hole up in front of Netflix and eat crisps, says Steven Poole

Lionel Barber (Photo: Getty)

New grammar schools need not bring back the problems of the old ones

13 August 2016 9:00 am

Those who want to revive grammar schools are accused of ‘bring backery’ — the unthinking idea that the past was…

Holy Bible

I can’t sleep for anger at the Spectator review of my friend’s book

6 August 2016 9:00 am

May I write a review of a review? I have to get this out of my system, having been unable…

Igor Stravinsky’s body being carried through Venice to the Basilica of San Zanipolo, where, by papal dispensation, a Russian Orthodox service was held

Southbank’s ‘Belief and Beyond Belief’ series is beyond parody

23 July 2016 9:00 am

A forthcoming ‘festival’ at the Southbank Centre exposes the secular mindset of Britain’s arts establishment, says Damian Thompson

Pilgrimage

Pilgrimages are back – with less Christianity

16 July 2016 9:00 am

One of Britain’s oldest Christian traditions is reviving in a strange new form

Bugsy Malone (Photo: Tristram Kenton)

Brian Friel’s miserable snapshot of Ireland is libellous blarney: Faith Healer reviewed

9 July 2016 9:00 am

Does anyone believe Brian Friel’s libellous blarney? He portrays Ireland in the 20th century as an economic basket case where…

Rosary

Britain really is ceasing to be a Christian country

28 May 2016 9:00 am

A landmark in national life has just been passed. For the first time in recorded history, those declaring themselves to…

Funerals

The slow (and ignominious) death of the British funeral

14 May 2016 9:00 am

I mourn for the traditional ceremony

Cormac Murphy-O'Connor (Photo: Getty)

Let’s vote ‘in’ to renew the EU, says Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O’Connor

7 May 2016 9:00 am

There is more to the idea of Europe than narrow economic considerations. The Remain side needs to say so

The-last-Christian-(1)_SE

The price of a cathedral – and how deans pay it

26 March 2016 9:00 am

Deans are facing tough decisions to keep their beautiful buildings in good order

L - R Harry Melling (Jason) and Tyrone (2)

Patriotic Traitor finds dramatic gold in France’s interwar history

12 March 2016 9:00 am

Jonathan Lynn, co-author of Yes Minister, has excavated the history of France during the two world wars and discovered dramatic…

Gyulchekhra Bobokulova, the nanny suspected of killing a young girl in her care (Photo: Getty)

What do all these evil maniacs have in common?

5 March 2016 9:00 am

More bad publicity for the Islamic State’s ‘Kafir Tiny Tots and Babycare Service’. A burka-clad madwoman wandering through the streets…

Act of faith: Sybil Thorndike as Saint Joan, c.1924, in George Bernard Shaw’s ‘Saint Joan’

Why does drama always end up sneering at religion?

5 March 2016 9:00 am

 Theo Hobson explores the enduring appeal that religion has for dramatists