What does it mean to be committed to building basic caring communities? In an age of the privatisation of faith, how public should our commitment be? Have we a moral responsibility to get involved practically in our own neighbourhood now that the local is global and the global is local, or is the future ‘virtual communities’? Are basic communities an escapist indulgence absolving us from the long haul of transforming the institutions? And what impact does our Catholic and Christian faith have on these issues? In the closing lecture of this series of Faith Matters John Battle M.P. will draw on his long experience of public life to address these key questions for our contemporary society.
John Battle is Member of Parliament for Leeds West. He is a member of the International Development select committee and chairs the All-Party Parliamentary Groups on Poverty and on Overseas Development. John Battle was the Prime Minister's Envoy to the Faith Communities for six years until June 2007, during which time he worked to increase dialogue and cooperation between the faith communities in Britain. He has previously been Minister of State at the Foreign Office and at the Department of Trade and Industry. Before becoming an MP, he was the National Coordinator for Church Action on Poverty.