This Sunday millions of Christians around the world will join together in a simple prayer calling for an end to world poverty. The Micah Challenge campaign is focused on the implementation of the UN Millenium Development Goals. Edward will speak with Micah Challenge Chief Executive Joel Edwards about how church's around the world are joining together to hold their governments to account.
Composer Sasha Johnson Manning talks about her new choral piece called Your Life ( Go Tell Someone You Love Them.) It will be performed next week by Withington Girls School at the Bridgewater Hall in Manchester. Sasha is a former pupil and teacher at the school.
In 2002 a simple limestone burial box caused an archaelogical sensation. Inscribed on the ossuary in Hebrew were the words, " James son of Joseph brother of Jesus." If authentic it would be the first artifact with a possible direct link to Jesus. But as it went on display in the Royal Ontario Museum doubts were raised. The Israeli Antiquity Authority then declared it a forgery and arrested its owner. For the last five years the case has been winding through a Jerusalem court and this week the Judge retired to consider his verdict. Ed speaks to Matthew Kalman in Jerusalem, who is the only reporter to have followed the entire case in court.
Monday is National Coming Out Day in America. It's an event made especially poignant this year with the suicide last month of a gay college student, after video of him having sex, was streamed on the internet by his roommate. First-year student Tyler Clemente was the fourth young gay man in as many weeks to take his own life, and it's reopened the debate in America over the role played by religion in stigmatizing homosexuality. Matt Wells reports from New Jersey.
The Chilean miners are now tantalisingly close to rescue, having been trapped underground since the start of August. We will have the latest from the camp where the miners families have been living for the past months. We will also hear about how the church has been supporting them during the long wait for good news.
The Nobel Peace Prize has been awarded to Chinese dissident Liu Xiaobo much to the annoyance of Beijing who described it as "an obscenity.". We ask if their reaction sheds light on tensions within the Chinese government and what impact it might have on reform. Ed speaks with Martin Palmer from the Alliance of Religions and Conservation, who is also a leading scholar and translator of ancient Chinese texts.
As the Tory party conference ends we take a look at Justice Minister Ken's Clarke's plans to replace custodial sentences with community service. Kevin Bocquet reports on a new community sentencing scheme in Cheshire aimed at reducing the number of woman who end up in prison. And Ed will be joined in the studio by the Anglican Bishop to Her Majesty's Prisons, Rt Revd James Jones.
Series producer: Amanda Hancox.