Update on jusTice initiative

Developments and Progress Update – July 2011

Feedback

We thought a brief update on how things are developing would be useful for your information and prayers. Thank you to those of you who were able to attend our initial consultation in London in early May. It was an excellent time together, sharing the vision of jusTice, hearing your perspectives and making important initial connections.  

Media

We now have a facebook page, a twitter account and, of course, this blog site. The aim of facebook and twitter is to both disseminate news on justice-related topics and to link to projects, organisations and academic thinking in these areas.

The blog is recently underway and we are hoping to stimulate more in-depth (but still very accessible) thinking and discussion about justice-related issues as it develops. Links are as follows:-

facebook – http://www.facebook.com/pages/Justice-Advocacy-and-Mission/148143665240215

twitter – @just_mission

Also, please do take the opportunity to have a look at the recent (July 2011) edition of Redcliffe’s online journal, Encounters, which was dedicated to environmental issues. It included transcripts of the talks from the joint John Ray Initiative/Redcliffe Environment Day conference from February this year, and additional articles contributed by Carol Kingston-Smith and two MA students, which include justice-related environmental themes. For free download of some or all of the articles, the link is below:-

http://www.redcliffe.org/SpecialistCentres/EncountersMissionJournal/vw/1/ItemID/77

Aims of media

Although there will be linking to academic research and papers through these media the aim is to engage broadly and more informally with Christians and others interested in developing a justice hermeneutic; that is to say, to encourage the development of a biblically-informed lens through which justice-related issues can be weighed and considered.

In addition, we aim to develop a network of interested practitioners/organisations whose own media sites will form an integral resource to the jusTice initiative contributing both expertise in practice and current thinking.

We also aim to link with other academic institutions, think-tanks, movements and individual thinkers who are writing and contributing to a justice dialogue.

Our engagement is intentionally very broad across denominational, religious, political, academic and regional spectra. This is because we believe that engagement in justice-related issues is a matter which concerns everyone, so thinking needs to be distilled from a broad spectrum, in order to be representative and effective.

We really welcome and encourage you to begin to interact with us via these media, feeding in your insights and responses as this will enrich the community. We welcome alternative or opposing views on issues as this gives reach to the dialogue and helps to expose bias, strengthen thinking and keep the interaction fresh and meaningful. In all of this debate we trust we can all aim to work in a spirit of mutual respect and regard.

Developments planned in the next 3 months

Justice module accreditation: University of Gloucestershire

The application for the new Masters level module Just Mission: Justice issues in intercultural contexts is still with the University. There were some delays at the University end of the process as a result of a cancelled meeting. Feedback from Redcliffe’s Academic Dean is very positive and there are no foreseeable obstacles to the module being officially accredited during the summer.

Accreditation for new MA course: University of Gloucestershire

We are aiming to get the paperwork for the proposed new Masters course to Redcliffe’s Academic Dean by November 2011. This will then be processed and go to the University of Gloucestershire for accreditation approval in April/May 2012. The aim is to have the full MA course in Justice available for the start of the academic year beginning September 2012. We plan to start publicising the new MA from this autumn, subject to validation.

Partnership and Involvement

Financial matters

The jusTice initiative is being developed as part of a mission secondment to Redcliffe College from Latin Link, of which we are members.  We are thus supported in this role by individuals who have supported us for the past 9 years since we left legal and public health careers to pursue work in cross-cultural ministry, first in Bolivia and more recently at Redcliffe College.

Please pray for this initiative as we seek funding help from trusts and organisations which would like to partner with us. We are needing some financial investment this coming year to enable to the initiative to develop and lead to the delivery of modules at undergraduate and masters levels.

Students

From informal research we have already done we know that there is a demand for the kind of material the jusTice programme will be delivering within accredited training. This Autumn, as part of our data collection for the University, we will be sending out questionnaires to gather information about demand and details of desired content, so again, please pray for a good response to those so we can gather quality research to assist the validation process. Any comments you want to make will also be part of our survey of views/demand.

Many thanks for your interest. Do let us know if you would like further information.

Andy & Carol

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