Arts and Entertainment

Towards the end of this illuminating book, Larry Siedentop describes a fourteenth century battle between two Christian monastic orders. The Dominicans and the Franciscans were mendicant orders, begging monks who had abandoned the comforts of the cloisters to preach among the poor.

What's it like to study... Journalism

Journalism's a hard slog, but worthwhile if you're passionate enough, says Sophie Warnes. She graduated with a BA in multimedia journalism from Bournemouth University in 2011

Studying Japanese gives you an insight into Japanese culture and international relations. This photo shows plaques depicting prayers and wishes in a shrine in Japan

What's it like to study... Japanese

Rebecca Smith is about to embark on her final year of Japanese at the University of Leeds - and it's much more than just a language course

Weltethos: CBSO and choruses, West, Seal, Gardner, Royal Festival Hall, London

Driven by religion plus a fascination with digitally-engineered sound, Jonathan Harvey has carved a most individual niche in contemporary music. His religion is of the mystical variety, drawing less on the Anglicanism of his youth than on the Buddhism he later embraced, finding expression in a series of ecstatic works.

Church of England likely to move to the right

The Church of England is likely to take a swing to the right as a conclave of powerful figures from within the Anglican Communion meets to decide who should become the new Archbishop of Canterbury over the coming days.

What's it like to study... Medicine

Fred Clough has a first in medical sciences from Oxford and clinical medicine from UCL

Physiotherapy involves massage and sports injuries but is also a hard degree

What's it like to study... Physiotherapy

Kirsty Wright graduated from a Physiotherapy course at the University of Liverpool in 2012

Paulos in 2007

Abune Paulos: Religious leader and peace activist

Abune Paulos led the Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church, which has more than 40 million members, as well as serving on the Central Committee of the World Council of Churches and its Commission on Faith and Order. He was one of seven serving presidents of the WCC. While he was instrumental in interfaith dialogue initiatives, Abune Paulos was vocal in several international platforms, including the World Economic Forum and the World Summit of Religious and Spiritual Leaders at the United Nations.

Studying a degree in Astronomy could see you work around the world, and even eventually in space

What's it like to study... Astronomy

Samuel Nathan Richards studied a BSc in Astronomy at the University of Hertfordshire

Old Etonian: Team GB's Lawrence Clarke says he wishes he went to a state school

Team GB's Lawrence Clarke says he wishes he hadn't gone to Eton

A Team GB hurdler who went to Eton has said he wishes he had gone to a state school instead.

Sales at his 90th birthday celebrations in November 2010

Briefly: Archbishop Eugenio de Araujo Sales

Eugenio de Araujo Sales, who died of a heart attack in his sleep on 9 July at the age of 91, was Rio de Janeiro's former archbishop who provided shelter to thousands of people opposed to the military regimes that once ruled Brazil, Argentina and Chile.

The Rev Canon Celia Thomson, who says the amended Synod Bill would discriminate against women: 'It's very distressing'

Vote on women bishops is delayed

Supporters of women bishops are gearing up for months of frantic lobbying after the vote which might have approved the move was postponed yesterday during a meeting of the General Synod in York.

Contemporary Georgian Fiction, Edited and translated by Elizabeth Heighway

I recently attended a presentation about non-Georgians' perceptions of Georgia. Essentially, we're talking copious drinking, banquets, war, hospitality and Stalin. It's probably a fair summation of what most in the UK know, or think they know, about the country. Now Dalkey Archive Press has attempted to widen our perspective, publishing an anthology of contemporary stories by 20 distinguished Georgian writers. Georgians are proud of their literature – but how many writers can you name?

Row erupts over last minute amendments to women bishops legislation

Supporters of women bishops have rounded on senior leaders within the Church of England after they inserted last minute amendments to proposed legislation that will allow female clergy to hold the highest levels of office alongside their male colleagues.

James: he had a prodigious gift for friendship

Canon Eric James: Influential clergyman and theologian

James encouraged his great friend Robert Runcie to commission the important report ‘Faith in the City

'Romance of the given-away life': Rev Richard Holloway, former Bishop of Edinburgh

Leaving Alexandria: A Memoir of Faith and Doubt, By Richard Holloway

There's one question about Leaving Alexandria - otherwise a quiet epic of a biography about faith, doubt, class, philosophy and social action - that won't go away. How did such an innate dissimulator and self-dramatist as Richard Holloway, wracked with crippling, carnal doubts about the authority and certainties of organised religion, actually get to become the Episcopalian Primus and Bishop of Edinburgh?

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Independent Travel
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – Five-star MS Swiss Corona 7 nights from £999pp
Lake Como St Moritz & the Bernina Express 7 nights from £809pp
Vietnam
Lake Maggiore, Orta & the Matterhorn 7 nights from £939pp
South Africa
Spain
Prices correct as of 19 December 2014
Isis in Iraq: Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment by militants

'Jilan killed herself in the bathroom. She cut her wrists and hanged herself'

Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment
Ed Balls interview: 'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'

Ed Balls interview

'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'
He's behind you, dude!

US stars in UK panto

From David Hasselhoff to Jerry Hall
Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz: What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?

Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz

What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?
Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Planet’s surface is inhospitable to humans but 30 miles above it is almost perfect
Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history - clocks, rifles, frogmen’s uniforms and colonial helmets

Clocks, rifles, swords, frogmen’s uniforms

Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history
Return to Gaza: Four months on, the wounds left by Israel's bombardment have not yet healed

Four months after the bombardment, Gaza’s wounds are yet to heal

Kim Sengupta is reunited with a man whose plight mirrors the suffering of the Palestinian people
Gastric surgery: Is it really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Is gastric surgery really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Critics argue that it’s crazy to operate on healthy people just to stop them eating
Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction Part 2 - now LIVE

Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction

Bid on original art, or trips of a lifetime to Africa or the 'Corrie' set, and help Homeless Veterans
Pantomime rings the changes to welcome autistic theatre-goers

Autism-friendly theatre

Pantomime leads the pack in quest to welcome all
The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

Sony suffered a chorus of disapproval after it withdrew 'The Interview', but it's not too late for it to take a stand, says Joan Smith
From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?

Panto dames: before and after

From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?
Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Booksellers say readers are turning away from dark modern thrillers and back to the golden age of crime writing
Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best,' says founder of JustGiving

Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best'

Ten million of us have used the JustGiving website to donate to good causes. Its co-founder says that being dynamic is as important as being kind
The botanist who hunts for giant trees at Kew Gardens

The man who hunts giants

A Kew Gardens botanist has found 25 new large tree species - and he's sure there are more out there