Christianity to Islam, Hinduism to Judaism, Ed Stourton presents religious news and analysis of the…
Edward Stourton with a special Boxing Day edition of this religious and ethical news programme
It is the day that Good King Wenceslas looked out on the feast of Stephen, named after the first Christian Martyr. It is also known as Boxing Day and Wren Day in different parts of the world. We shall explain all on this festive edition of Sunday.
First the story of that popular hymn about Good King Wenceslas. Edward talks to author Ian Bradley, an expert on Victorian hymns to find out why the public love this song even if music critics look down their nose at it.
In parts of Ireland and Wales today is also known as Wren Day - a festival with roots in pre-Christian pagan culture. And as William Crawley finds out the celebrations involve a lot of dressing up and dancing!
Six years ago today the Asian Tsunami killed over a quarter of a million people. It was one of the most devastating natural disasters of modern times. One of the aid workers who rushed to the scene was Anglican Priest Dr Emma Loveridge. Edward talks to her about how the Tsunami affected her and the team she worked with in Sri Lanka.
St Stephen was the first Christian martyr but is the concept of martyrdom still relevant today? Trevor Barnes reports on the Cult of the martyr, both ancient and modern.
Joining Edward to discuss the idea of martyrdom are Dr Paul Middleton from the University of Chester who has written extensively on the subject, Dr Salman Sayyid from the University of South Australia and AC Grayling, Professor of Philosophy at Birkbeck College, University of London.
Finally having covered the Christian and Pagan legacies of the day we come to that most crucial of questions - What do you eat on Boxing Day. Edward is joined in the studio by food historian Ivan Day.
Series producer: Amanda Hancox.
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