It's one of those amusing quirks of history that we have a national patron saint who never visited England, would not have spoken the language of these isles at that time and probably could not even name this little island - which was not to be known as England until another 500 years after his death.
I was broadly in favour of a 'no' vote during the Scottish independence referendum. I didn't have much of a reason beyond still not being totally over America's secession 200 years before my birth, but I wanted Scotland to stick around. Ewan McGregor and Gordon Strachan and whisky... They seemed worth keeping hold of. I was mistaken.
Let's face it, religion operates from an unfathomable position of social and political privilege. We rightly mock climate change sceptics as deniers of the scientifically proven. Why, then, is it beyond the pale to lampoon believers in not just the doubtful but the outright apocryphal?
In the promotional blurb for a lecture on 'Why 'no religion' is the new religion' that took place this week at the British
British Muslims are at risk of being radicalised because of the strong language used about countering Islamist terrorism
The UK has some of the most comprehensive anti-discrimination laws in the world. Britain is rightly regarded globally as a tolerant nation; one where everyone, within reasonable limits, can enjoy freedom of religion or belief and is legally protected from discrimination on the grounds of their religion or belief...
We've almost won the argument on compulsory worship, let's just hope we don't have to wait so long for people to finally admit that organising education around parents' religious beliefs really isn't the greatest idea.
Early on Tuesday morning, Ananta Bijoy Das was hacked to death in a public street for the crime of not believing in God - and being willing to say so publicly. Ananta had been on a list of atheist bloggers produced by Islamist political parties in 2013...
Fundamentalism jumps barriers like a virus. It is as if religious fundamentalism is transmitted to the secular ideology of the State. Think laïcité in France today. Or, in a different dynamic, try Fox News and Tea-Party Republicanism.
Speaker after speaker last Saturday warned of an Islamist agenda of stealthy, creeping, subtle Sharification. This involves sustained attempts by Islamists to pressure public institutions, in the name of religious freedom and multiculturalism, to make special allowances for their reactionary sectarian clerical values.