St Paul's Institute

The Rt Revd Dr Peter Selby

Peter Selby was Bishop of Worcester from 1997 until 2007 and in 2001 was also appointed as Bishop to HM Prisons, a post from which he also retired in September 2007. Dr Selby's interest in prisons is long-standing, and he is himself the son of refugees, and served for a time as the Chair of the Asylum Committee of the Refugee Council. He has served in posts involving adult education and policy development, as well as in pastoral and consultancy work, in South London and in the North-East. He became a bishop in 1984 in South-West London, and undertook research into international and personal debt as the William Leech Professorial Fellow in Durham from 1992 to 1997. During his time as a Diocesan Bishop he was elected a Church Commissioner and appointed a member of its Assets Committee.

Peter was President of the National Council for Independent Monitoring Boards from 2008 to 2013. He has recently published his latest book An Idol Unmasked: A Faith Perspective on Money and is also the author of Grace and Mortgage: the Language of Faith and the Debt of the World. Following his role as part of the Interim Directing Team from 2012-2014, he continues to work as a special adviser to St Paul's Institute.


Articles and Opinions by this author

But it's the money that is the ethical issue, Mr Jenkins

Good people are no less vulnerable to being deflected from true ethical standards by the mesmerising effects of large numbers.   More »

Posted: 19 Mar 2014 - 1 comment

Who Says You Can't Keep the Pound?

The currency of a country is what the people trust; and what they cease to trust will no longer serve as currency.   More »

Posted: 25 Feb 2014

Risk, Fear and Faith

Has the imprudence of those who led our economic system to the edge of collapse caused us all to become increasingly risk-averse, to the detriment of creativity, enterprise and faith?   More »

Posted: 30 Jan 2014

Why Expect Charities to be Different?

One of the tragic by products of the increasing power of money is that churches and charities quickly become captive to ways of thinking which have negative effects on the world's poor.   More »

Posted: 12 Dec 2013

Could there be a Finance Sector with Convictions?

I do my banking, a bit of my shopping and all my energy purchase with the Co-op. So I certainly watch with the concern of one who has personal reasons for wanting the mess cleared up.   More »

Posted: 21 Nov 2013

Who Sets a 'Fair' Price?

The shortcomings of the markets are not just things for good people to think about: they require resistance in the name of the common good.   More »

Posted: 23 Oct 2013

The Spirituality of Money

If money presents itself as a god (Mammon), does it have a spirituality, a prayer life which it enjoins upon its worshippers/followers, devotees?   More »

Posted: 25 Sep 2013 - 1 comment

Tremble When the Money Men are Delighted

Christians need a more radical grasp of the underlying issues about the financial system.   More »

Posted: 02 Sep 2013 - 2 comments

Is it the Love of Money That's the 'Root of All Evil' - or the Fear of It?

It's worth remembering while money may arouse envy and 'love' in a bad sense, it certainly arouses fear.   More »

Posted: 30 Jul 2013

Was something missing from under the Dome?

The real problem was that we could not allow ourselves - or so it seemed - to consider what it was that had given banks such inflated importance.   More »

Posted: 26 Jun 2013

The Inflation We Love

If cauliflowers and electricity become more expensive we get worried; if the same happens to houses we are really pleased.   More »

Posted: 29 May 2013 - 1 comment

When You're Looking For Growth, What Should Count?

St Paul's Institute is in the middle of its series on The City and the Common Good. The difficult part of that is that we seem to be dominated by the bits we can measure.   More »

Posted: 02 May 2013

Who's Occupying Cyprus?

The 'haircut' required of the Greek depositors involved Cypriot banks to a large extent, and the timebomb under the Cypriot economy started ticking.   More »

Posted: 27 Mar 2013 - 1 comment

Rating the Real Economy

So it has happened. We are not AAA anymore. And now that we are not AAA we learn, not surprisingly, that being AAA was not the really important thing anyway.   More »

Posted: 26 Feb 2013

Keeping Universal Benefits - and taxing them

Let's think through the issues being raised more and more about the 'fairness' of universal benefits.   More »

Posted: 28 Jan 2013 - 1 comment

Do You Pay to be Called?

What does the incoming Governor of the Bank of England's salary package tell us about the job, about our attitudes to pay, and about our different standards for private and public service?   More »

Posted: 04 Dec 2012

Danger - Theologians at Work

What is happening now is a moral issue, which means it is also an issue of common sense and one that the wisdom of religious faith can speak on.   More »

Posted: 20 Nov 2012 - 2 comments

Bound to the Poor - or just helping when we choose?

The fashionable political consensus for the present is that we should be grateful for not being part of the Euro...   More »

Posted: 04 Oct 2012

Wake-up Call

How should Christians deal with the current economic crisis and the extra burdens imposed on the most vulnerable members of society?   More »

Posted: 10 Aug 2012 - 2 comments

Take God Out of the Balance Sheet, and Then Put Him Back

By speaking of idolatry, we lay bare the fact that money has become a rival to true faith, a serious competitor against God for people's loyalty.   More »

Posted: 08 Jul 2012

Money Has Changed - That's the Issue

As a Christian and a theologian I am convinced money has acquired all the characteristics of an idol, aggrandising its power and claiming more and more of people's lives.   More »

Posted: 06 Jun 2012

Either Way, It's the Poorest Who Pay

At last, it seems that the budget has brought to the surface a number of issues about the encouragement of charitable giving.   More »

Posted: 16 Apr 2012

Money, Territory, and the New Generation

What are we hoping to do as a society for those at present in their teens? What investment are we prepared to make in their future?   More »

Posted: 21 Mar 2012

Carrots and Sticks

The complexities and moral inconsistencies of our attitudes have been thrown into sharp relief by the events of 2008 and those of 2011.   More »

Posted: 22 Feb 2012

The Message in the Loot

Examining what was looted in the riots is another way of asking, 'what, in our society, is there for the taking'. And what, by implication, is not?   More »

Posted: 13 Jan 2012 - 1 comment

If We Don't Hear One Message, We May Get Another

We must engage with ideas that seek to change things for the better, or otherwise face behaviour patterns that inflict hurt on people.   More »

Posted: 05 Dec 2011 - 1 comment

Was it Just a Banking Crisis?

With more or less reluctance the proposals to reconstruct the banking sector are being accepted as either desirable or inevitable. But will we need more than a ring-fence to protect us?   More »

Posted: 20 Sep 2011

The Nuclear Debate

Nuclear energy, we are constantly being told, is an inevitable part of reducing carbon emissions, absolutely necessary if we are to close the energy gap. Resistance to that argument is deemed irrational.   More »

Posted: 05 Aug 2011

When Negative Equity is Social

In the middle of the public outrage about the phone hacking scandal there have come to the surface some rather uncomfortable realities that are not being spoken of much.   More »

Posted: 18 Jul 2011