Front Cover

Unlike Richard Dawkins, Contemporary Creed (revised edition) sees no conflict between evolution and God, faith and modern science. But what sort of God creates a violent universe with a Big Bang almost 14 billion years ago and appears to do little or nothing to prevent built-in suffering & natural disasters like earthquakes, famines, disabled children and cancers? The Christian God leaves a lot unexplained. Some writers give superficial answers whereas Morris, who helps care for his own handicapped grandson, gets to the root of difficulties and succeeds in finding credible pathways through sixty problems of Christian beliefs and ethics. He writes for believers and unbelievers: for Christians like himself who admit their doubts, and for atheists and agnostics interested in big questions. His unusual format of 90% prose and 10% original poetry is entertaining, and the style straightforward everyday language, offering conclusions that are often open-ended, undogmatic. His systematic theology becomes a brief A-Z that may be read in any order for individual Bible study, or by house groups that want a provocative structure for lively discussion.
John Hunt Publishing
Back Cover
Content of First Edition 2005
: Contemporary Creed translates ancient beliefs into today’s language. It is written for those who, like the author, do not find it easy to believe and whose faith is married to doubt, but he points an intelligent pathway through sixty intellectual problems of traditional Christian beliefs. A library of theology books is compressed into this novel and popular mini-course on modern Christianity, in transparent English, without jargon. Original verse helps animates old truths and solve their difficulties.
John Hunt Publishing
Contemporary Creed

Brief Biography of
Revd Dr John Morris

Photo of John Morris at the launch of his book
Hampshire Chronicle photo article headlined 'Author aims to answer some fundamental questions' 21 June 2012

Born in 1937, John Morris, M.A. in Economics (Corpus, Cambridge 1955-58), first part of Theology B.A. (Corpus 1959), PGCE (London), M.Ed in English (East Africa), and PhD in English (Exeter), was a teacher, teacher-trainer and lecturer for 35 years. He was ordained as an unpaid Anglican clergyman in 1995, assisting three rural parishes in Hampshire, UK for six years while being chaplain of Twyford School for eleven.

For 18 years until 28 November 2015, John was unpaid Chairman of what is now a UK charity, Friends of Albella Boys Home, Darjeeling which funds Albella Boys Home and its primary school, in Darjeeling District, India; many of the residents are orphans and Albella also pays for the education of fifty non-resident girls www.albellahome.hampshire.org.uk. But John's priority is caring for and exercising his grandson, Daniel, who was born severely handicapped in 1999 and still cannot talk or walk - but he can take steps when John holds his hips.

1960 John married Mary, a nursery and primary teacher, and they had three children, one of them dying as a baby. They now have Daniel to stay on alternate weekends and holidays. John’s writing owes much to Daniel and to his years in Uganda. Where is God? What really matters in our Darwinian world with millions of Daniels, natural disasters and hunger? These questions are central to his writing, in order to make Christianity credible, marrying modern science and faith.

His hobbies include reading science books, tennis and squash, and high altitude trekking. An unfulfilled ambition is to reach base camp on Kanchenjunga, the world’s third highest mountain, that he first saw in 1994 from the orphanage. But he did climb an uncrowded Kilimanjaro in 1965 in the school holiday, after directing a televised play starring his teenage pupil, John Sentamu, now the Archbishop of York! Teachers reap surprising harvests!

John is a floating voter, sceptical of party politics, but he did march over two impending wars, the Falklands (in Plymouth 1982) and Iraq (Hyde Park 15 Febuary 2003).

East Africa and Dr Sentamu:

The Archbishop of York, Dr John Sentamu
The Archbishop of York,
Dr John Sentamu

Mary and John lived in Uganda 1963-71, teaching, then teacher-training. One of his pupils was John Sentamu now the Archbishop of York, who starred in two stage plays, one of them televised, that John Morris directed. In a BBC Radio 4 Desert Island Discs programme on 22 June 2003, Sentamu named two teachers, one of them John.

On the day of Sentamu’s enthronement as Archbishop on 30 November 2005, John was interviewed on BBC1 Breakfast TV, and showed photos of Sentamu acting, and in a dugout canoe on the lake where John twice took a dozen pupils on holiday for a week.

Interviewing Sentamu for The Times (London), Ruth Gledhill wrote: “John Morris, working as a young English teacher in Uganda, took pity on the scrawny kid who walked 12 miles barefoot to and from secondary school in Kampala each day. He never dreamed that the confident, laughing child destined to fulfil his dream of being a barrister in Uganda would end up as Archbishop of York in the Church of England.

Dr John Sentamu remembers Mr Morris for buying him a bicycle and keeping him supplied with inner tubes when the tyres gave way on rough tracks that passed for roads. Mr Morris went on to become ordained himself, at the age of 58, and now, back in England, works as chaplain at Twyford School in the Winchester diocese. “His qualities are leadership and straight talking,” Mr Morris says. “The Church of England is in great need of straight talkers. John does not mince words. He gets straight to the point. He’s a very alive person.”

Mr Morris took him and other children to the local Anglican church each Sunday. Dr Sentamu’s vocation came after his friend, Archbishop Janani Luwum, was murdered, making him vow: “You kill my friend, I take his place.”

Dr Sentamu remembers Mr Morris as one of the teachers and missionaries in Uganda who educated him in what it means to be English. “As I was being raised as one of 13 children in a four bedroom house I learnt that you are totally dependent on one another and not a single individualistic sort of person. The missionaries I saw and the teachers I saw in my country were not bringing an individualistic thing. It was always a communal thing.” Without the English, Dr Sentamu says, his life would have been of a different order... (from “Multiculturalism has betrayed the English, Archbishop says”, Times, Tuesday 22 November 2005, pages 6,7). For more on Sentamu, click on home page Articles to find John’s article in The Church of England Newspaper, “The Genesis of a Contemporary Creed”, 17 March 2006, pages 9,10.

 

 

 

 

 

John Morris

AUTHOR: John Morris, MA, M.Ed, PGCE, PhD, was a teacher and lecturer for over thirty years before being ordained as an Anglican clergyman in 1995.

Archbishop of York

Back Cover Endorsements

We need books to bridge the gap between belief and unbelief, between the Church and the enquirer who cannot find the entrance and, for that matter, between the pulpit and the pew. This book does it... John Morris taught me when I was a young man ... (see p14 for full text)
Commendation by
the Archbishop of York
Sentamu Ebor

My problem with most books on God by believers is that they treat theology as though it were a science. It’s not - and John Morris doesn’t try to pretend that it is . Most refreshing!


John Humphrys, BBC 'Today', 'Mastermind', In God We Doubt.

John Morris addresses many significant questions about Christina belief in a careful and truth-seeking manner. His book should be helpful to many enquirers.

Revd Dr John Polkinghorne, KBE, FRS, physicist, theologiam, author.

In this admirable and cogently-written book, John Morris explains how he sustains a life-changing faith while being fully mindful of all the intellectual challenges and preplexities this entails. Even those of us who cannot share his beliefs will be stimulated by his arguments and enlightened by his perspective.

Lord (Martin) Rees, OM, Kt, FRS, Astronomer Royal, author.

A brilliant, honest, contemporary restatement of orthodox Christianity. It tackles 60 of the toughest objections to Christian faith with deep thoughtfulness, in well-organised topics and clear prose. His 100-word creed is a masterpiece, his poems a joy, and his profound handling of difficult issues will help many, atheists and believers alike.

Canon Dr Michael Green, theologian, university speaker worldwide, author.

Equipment for Disabled Children:

Friends of Albella Boys Home, Darjeeling

Diocese of Winchester

Exeter University