Ekklesia (think tank)

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Ekklesia logo.png
Founded2002; 17 years ago (2002)
  • United Kingdom

Ekklesia is an independent, not-for-profit British think tank which examines the role of religion in public life and advocates transformative theological ideas and solutions.


Ekklesia was founded in 2002 by Jonathan Bartley and Simon Barrow.[1] In September 2002, Ekklesia launched a Sunday programme on BBC Radio Scotland to encourage pacification and minimize violent insurrections in Iraq.[2]

In June 2006, Ekklesia launched a campaign advocating for the separation of the role of the Church and State in weddings. The think tank argued that the "one size fits all" attempt to fuse religious and civic marriage was a source of great confusion.[3]

In February 2009, the Bishop of Willesden Pete Broadbent called the directors of Ekklesia «self-appointed self-publicists who speak for nobody [...] and pretend that they're speaking for mainstream Christianity».[4] In 2010, when the Christian Concern lobbying group launched the Not Ashamed Day, Ekklesia stated there was no evidence Catholics were being shamed because of their religion.[5] In June 2011, Symon Hill, a bisexual Christian writer and a director of Ekklesia, embarked on a Birmingham-to-London pilgrimage against homophobia.[6]

In October 2012, Ekklesia, in partnership with Edinburgh City Centre Churches Together, the Cornerstone Bookshop, and the Episcopal Diocese of Edinburgh’s Adventures in Faith programme, launched the Centre for Living Christianity (CLiC) to explore religious faith in skeptical times.[7]

In March 2016, Ekklesia organized a group letter to ask the new Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, Stephen Crabb, to think again his ministry's position regarding welfare cuts and benefit sanctions.[8]

Jonathan Bartley left the think tank in 2016 and subsequently became co-leader of the Green Party of England and Wales.

In June 2019, during the Donald Trump's official visit to the UK, Simon Barrow called the US President «anti-gospel».[9]


The think tank is financed by donations and the online sale of fair trade goods.[1]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "Think tank to promote theological ideas". The Guardian. 10 November 2006. Retrieved 15 August 2019.
  2. ^ "Non-violent solution for Iraq still possible says Christian think-tank". Independent Catholic News. 1 January 2003. Retrieved 15 August 2019.
  3. ^ "Call to abolish legal marriages". BBC. 17 June 2006. Retrieved 15 August 2019.
  4. ^ Andrew Brown (25 February 2009). "Bishop has hissy fit on facebook". The Guardian. Retrieved 15 August 2019.
  5. ^ "Christians launch defence of faith 'under attack'". BBC. 1 December 2010. Retrieved 15 August 2019.
  6. ^ John McManus (16 June 2011). "Bisexual Christian embarks on homophobic 'hurt' journey". BBC. Retrieved 15 August 2019.
  7. ^ "'First Supper' to launch new Centre for Living Christianity". Ekklesia. 5 October 2012. Retrieved 19 August 2019.
  8. ^ "High profile Catholics call for Stephen Crabb to rethink welfare policies". The Tablet. 23 March 2016. Retrieved 19 August 2019.
  9. ^ Eno Adeogun (3 June 2019). "'His actions betray the Gospel': Christians react to Trump's state visit to the UK". Premier. Retrieved 19 August 2019.

External links[edit]