Progamme for CCMJ Annual Meeting and AGM on Saturday
Assemble: 11 informally share, thoughts, view reports, scan books,
12 -12.30 Tarek el Diwany 'Interfaith
approaches to inclusive structured justice'
1.00 Light Buffet Lunch
1.45 General discussion
Please come to any part you can. We still welcome late deciders
We also welcome any thoughts you'd like to be brought to the meeting.
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Dear CCMJ members and Associates,
Our Annual meeting followed by our AGM is upon us.
Please look in for as much of the day as you can and include friends
if you wish.
Please bring your displays, leaflets, inspiring books etc.
This day is a rallying of our resources and a strengthening of
I am grateful for those who who have already sent notice of
attendance or apologies.
Below are the papers Colin has prepared for the day. Bring copies
with you please.
CHRISTIAN COUNCIL FOR MONETARY JUSTICE
President Rt Rev. Peter Selby.
Vice presidents: Rt Rev John Flack, Rt Rev Mano Rumulshah, Austin
Mitchell MP, Lord Sudeley
Chairman Rev Canon Peter Challen
11 October 2005
ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING
CHRISTIAN COUNCIL FOR MONETARY JUSTICE
Our annual general meeting, as advised last January and June,
will take place on Saturday 29 October 2005 at Christ Church,
The John Marshall Hall, 27 Blackfriars Road, London SE1 8NY -
the same place as for the last two years. An agenda is enclosed.
To get there from the nearest underground station, Southwark,
turn left when leaving the concourse and then left again into
the Blackfriars Road, head north and walk about 5 or so minutes
and the church is on the left with the bridge over the River Thames
easily in sight ahead. Coming from the Thames, the church is on
We intend to have a pre lunch session starting at 11 am during
which time our Muslim brother and friend Tarek El Diwany will
lead us to discuss Interfaith approaches to inclusive structured
justice. There will also be an opportunity to hear a 30 minutes
recording of one of the radio interviews our chairman gave in
New Zealand as well as an informal catch up on activities at home
and abroad. We also hope to have pictures of our chairman in New
Zealand to show he really was there!
A lunch will be provided at a cost of £3 and will be served
at 1 pm. Because of catering requirements -(do we order 1000 sausage
rolls or just 4 ?) it would be most helpful if you could let Peter
Challen know by Tuesday 25 October 2005 by email, telephone 020-72070509
or at 21 Bousfield Road, London SE14 5TP whether you would like
to join us for this fellowship occasion.
An informal discussion on the way forward for CCMJ also will take
place just before the formal annual meeting.
This will start at no earlier than 2-30 p.m.and end hopefully
by 4-15 pm depending on members' verbosity! Nominations for office
can be made, with me, prior to the meeting or at the meeting.
For those whose membership, like mine, lapses in November, a renewal
notice is enclosed. To cover costs, financial membership is £10
a year, but any sum from nil upwards would be welcome depending
on one's personal circumstances.
Colin J Whitmill
CHRISTIAN COUNCIL FOR MONETARY JUSTICE
ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING 29 OCTOBER 2005
3 Minutes of meeting 30 October 2004
circulated January 2005
4. Matters arising
6 Notices of Motion
"That the subscription for life members be £500 with
It is my view that the current life subscription is a burden on
existing members paying by annual subscription. No reserve has
been set aside in the accounts to service life members in the
future. If the life subscription is increased to £500 I
would suggest that any life subscriptions are put in a special
account and that a proportion representing the annual subscription
is transferred on an annual basis for general use
a. That the annual subscription for membership be £10 a
year or whatever sum a person can afford.
b.That the Executive not accept any applications for life membership
7. Election of Officers
8. General discussion
9. Date of next meeting
REPORT ON VISIT TO MAURITIUS
by Peter Challen, Chairman Christian Council for Monetary Justice
At the end of July 2005, a multifaith group, led from the new
Islamic Cultural Centre in Mauritius, invited me to join a group
of resource people from seven countries at a two-day seminar through
which to formulate a 'Project Mauritius' to help that multi-faith,
multi-ethnic community resist the deep degrading inroads of globalisation.
There was excitement among all participants, of which a small
majority were Muslims, that a Christian should come to affirm
the Islamic conviction that all trade and investment should involve
the sharing of risk and reward, of joy and sorrow. I was kept
intensely busy for not just the two-day seminar, but for the six
days of my stay. I hardly saw that beautiful island of "a
people born from the world in a land born of the sea," but
I reached deep into a dialogue about our common humanity to which
all aspects of faith in the God of the universe contribute.
In my discussions, I was keen to assert that the principles that
lie behind Islamic economics and most contemporary Islamic financial
instruments are to be found in all great faith traditions, though
references are scattered and in modern times often lost from sight
Unfortunately, the seminar programme contained no reference to
the global context in which the conference was meeting. I recorded
four hazards that raise serious questions over a slow process
of 'co-existence' and the introduction of Islamic Windows in Western
Danger of western coercion
The danger of coercion by or seduction into the present economic
paradigm far outweighs the likelihood of slowly converting the
western neo-classical economic paradigm, but participants at the
seminar were not aware of that.
I recorded for further study those hazards and the introduction
of Islamic Windows in Western Banks.
The four destructive giants - ogres - that stalk human society
on this precious planet are ;
a. an unquestioning acceptance of the present economic order.
[despite immense indications of global degradation in the recent
UN Millennium Eco-system Assessment (March 2005), which suggested
that the tipping point in major indicators of final collapse of
human life support on earth may well lie only two generations
b. a profound mal-distribution of land, assets, resources and
knowledge [Absolute property rights erode our understanding of
stewardship of 'the Commons'. The accelerating privatisation of
water, for instance, may be the next cause of war].
c. an inordinate power given to corporations [God's economy-world
or house-keeping-challenges corporate law, which requires 'externalities'
to be paid for by society at large not the originator of the detrimental
d. a deeply flawed bank credit/money system
Challenge to Mauritian Deputy Prime Minister
It was my privilege to be invited to meet and discuss with the
Mauritian Deputy Prime Minister, and later with the Minister of
Finance, aspects which I also recommended that the Project team
The challenge was that they should give detailed consideration
to the advice given in the 1980s by a member of the Christian
Council for Monetary Justice to Prime Minister, Dr Mahatier of
Malaysia: - [which advice led him to free Malaysia from the conditionalities
of the IMF]
a. Put immediate foreign exchange controls on your currency.
b. Reverse the liberalisation of the financial markets
c. There should be no inclination to privatise national assets
d. Avoid further borrowing and raise capital domestically [People's
money publicly used by the central bank - publicly owned and transparent
in all its transactions]
e. People must be housed and fed as a priority over any external
commitments. [We are all Mauritians,' is already your national
slogan - let a first call on your nation's wealth be a basic income
for all citizens!]
f. a serious afterthought- look frequently to your own security.
[Have the courage of your convictions - support one another -
serve one another - rise above the self-centredness greed and
control which is bred by finance capitalism and abhorred by all
the great faith traditions. ]
While the ministers graciously acknowledged the views presented,
my fear is that their advisers may well not have the impetus to
depart from their learned commitment to orthodox finance.
CCMJ AT CENTRE OF FIGHT FOR NEW WORLD
A report from CCMJ member Rodney Shakespeare
Firstly, two things about CCMJ:--
a) It is against interest. This immediately resonates with the
core beliefs of the three main monotheistic religions.
b) The name Christian Council for Monetary Justice has a surprising
efficacy in Islam.
Secondly, modernising Islam has a number of characteristics but
the following must be mentioned if this
report as a whole, and its significant "twist" at the
end, is to be understood. Modernising Islam:--
i) rejects all forms of riba/interest (but not administrative
ii) hates inflation
iii) desires to connect the money supply with the real economy
iv) upholds market and private property solutions
v) resents the way countries have been trapped into often unrepayable
debt which, because of the effects of interest, makes for an everlasting
drain on a country's resources
vi) desires more independence
vii) desires more democratic political forms
viii) wishes to evolve something distinctive
ix) has a strong sense of social and economic justice
x) has a sense of loss of status in the world combined with historical
memory of past achievement.
As far as is known, in the context of monetary reform, modernising
Islam sees only one way in which all of i) to x) above can be
resolved into a coherent whole. That way, in summary, is the use
of interest-free repayable and cancellable loans directed at productive
capacity in the following areas:--
* public capital projects
* private capital projects if wide ownership is involved and a
basic income results
* environmental capital projects including clean energy generation
* small and start-up businesses
In all cases, the use of interest-free loans halves or more the
cost and an increasingly wide acceptance of the general concept
The story starts with Peter Challen and Rodney Shakespeare calling
on CCMJ members for help in answering questions about what might
lie within Islam so that a truly global solution to present problems
could be set out in Seven Steps to Justice. Members were helpful
but some key questions remained unanswered.
There then occurred a remarkable incident at an inter-faith gathering
which opened the path to Masudul Alam Choudhury who is now undoubtedly
the leading Islamic economist. Choudhury provided information
about possibility inherent within Islam and, as a result, the
Seven Steps book was completed and then presented at a major Islamic
monetary conference in Kuala Lumpur in August, 2002.
Soon after, Rodney was invited to write the Foreword to Choudhury's
magnum opus - The Islamic World-system - and to submit a paper
to the October, 2003 Oman conference. The paper (which should
be understood in the light of i) to x) above) became central to
the conference whereon, and as a consequence, the main funder
of the conference, apparently determined to crush new thinking,
withdrew support. However, exhibiting remarkable resilience and
drawing on his ever-increasing stature, Choudhury managed to transfer
the conference lock, stock and barrel to Trisakti University,
Jakarta. Trisakti is the birthplace of the 1998 Indonesian reformist
revolution and, in January, 2004, it gave a splendid welcome to
the conference and its papers.
Peter was then asked to write the Foreword to another major Choudhury
opus and, in December, 2004, at the Chittagong conference in December,
2004, neoclassical argument was comprehensively defeated and the
monetary way forward agreed (in summary) as gold-backed 100% reserve
Islamic endogenous (as defined) loans directed at productive capacity
on market and wide ownership principles.
NB. The gold backing is essentially to assure that inflation will
be restrained (although the endogenous (as defined) loans are,
in practice, counter-inflationary - see Seven Steps), and the
100% reserve aspect is a way of saying that the banking system
would not be allowed to create any new money (although it can
administer newly created interest-free central bank money directed
at forms of productive capacity broadly on Seven Steps principles).
Trisakti has now established (since January, 2005) the first PhD
program in the world to teach the new thinking; about ten universities
are in various stages of, and connections with, the new thinking;
a recent conference (McGill, Montreal) was devoted solely to teaching
the subject; and in December, 2005 there is to be the Universal
Paradigm conference in Dacca attempting to set the new monetary
developments in relation to all - yes, all -- areas of human study
which might seem impossible but at least two universities have
fought for the honour of holding the conference. In general, much
university conference and other opportunity is now opening up
but the problem is essentially that no one person is able to teach
all of the subject and so conferences etc (which have many associated
practical problems) will still have to be organised.
November 2005 conference
So what is the "twist" mentioned early in this Report?
In Jakarta, at the end of November, 2005 there will be a huge
and crucially important conference organised by various key Islamic
bodies (including the body which withdrew funding in 2003) and
the indications are that the new thinking is likely to prevail
at the highest levels of Islamic academia including banking and
finance theorists etc. Indeed, the acceptance of endogenous (as
defined) money appears to be progressing so well that a key Islamic
conference at Harvard university in the USA in 2006 is essentially
being presented with a fait accompli namely that (in contrast
to the position of several important American Muslim academics
who say that Islam must accept interest if it is to ever succeed)
riba/interest is not only wrong but unnecessary (the unnecessary
aspect being an important part of the new thinking). In a fundamental
way, therefore, (in a development separate from Trisakti), everything
seems to be coming to a head at Jakarta in late November, 2005.
Everything? Well, maybe everything because Harvard has been asked
to choose between accepting the endogenous (as defined) money
supply as something developing easily and naturally from within
the existing system and improving upon it OR, if it does not accept
the validity of the supply, to see it being taken up separately
by Islamic societies who will soon be giving a moral, intellectual
and material lead. At the moment. Harvard is awaiting the outcome
of the late November Jakarta conference but the Jakarta die is
seemingly cast in favour of the new thinking
Fight for new world financial system
Or rather, the die did seem to be cast except that one of the
most powerful economic (and non-Islamic) institutions in the world
has now got wind of the situation and appears to be intervening
heavily because - and this is the "twist" of this Report
- it has realised that what is happening in Islamic academia will
directly and comprehensively change present conceptions of economics
and finance not only in the Islamic world but also in the non-Islamic
world as well.
So, in a perhaps strange and roundabout way, CCMJ is now at the
centre of the fight for a new world.
TO ALL MEMBERS
REPORT OF CONSTITUTION COMMITTEE
A draft of a revised constitution is attached. Your committee
has taken into account the matters raised at the last annual meeting
and a draft of our work was referred to a solicitor as sought
by a member on the basis that the advice cost nothing.
The solicitor advised that she could not give legal advice as
her solicitor's liability insurance only covered that for her
employers. However, through her husband, there were comments given
that the draft constitution was too short, lacked definitions
and consistency of terms. He advised that a standard document
be used as provided for the by Charity Commission.
Two members of the committee looked at two hefty documents supplied
by the Charity Commission and reached the conclusion that the
standard document referred to would probably cover some 18 pages
of constitution and related to those unincorporated associations
seeking registration with the Charity Commission.
Unless the members wish to go down the road of registration as
a charity, it would appear to the committee that our own proposed
constitution would be adequate for our purposes. The current constitution
just required tidying up. We believe systems are made for people
not people for systems.
However there were valuable aspects in the standard document that
have been incorporated in the attached draft, which is recommended
Colin J Whitmill
4 October 2005
CHRISTIAN COUNCIL FOR MONETARY JUSTICE
To bring together in association, all who seek, as part of their
faith, a more just financial system other than that currently
The association shall be called the Christian Council for Monetary
Justice [ CCMJ ]
a. To present a Christian Witness as to the true function of a
monetary system in society
b To examine the working of existing laws and international arrangements
which relate to financial institutions especially in regard to
their wider economic, social and moral implications
c To press for monetary measures that will contribute to economic
and social justice throughout the world.
d To develop and promote an economic reading of the Bible and
a biblical reading of the economy
e To resource the work of economic literacy and popular education
around domestic and global issues of economic justice in the faith
f To seek to enable people far and wide to stimulate a more general
awareness of the pertinence of faith to the economic order; and
in particular to the urgent need to generate monetary reform.
a. Membership shall be open to persons of all Christian denominations
who are interested in active furtherance of the aims of the Council
and to those of other faiths sympathetic to exploration of monetary
b Applications for membership shall be deemed to be provisional
until accepted by the Executive. Should the Executive decline
to accept a membership application, or a renewal of membership,
it shall advise in writing the applicant, who shall have the right
to appeal the decision to the annual general meeting for final
c. Members shall pay such financial subscriptions as contributions
to the work of the Council as are determined by each annual general
d. The membership of a member will be deemed to have lapsed twelve
months after the date when any financial renewal was due and for
the following twelve months it will be deemed to be that of an
e Applications for non financial associate membership shall be
considered on the same basis as outlined in rule 3b.
5. Annual General Meeting
Notice of the annual general meeting shall be given by the Executive
to all members no later than 14 days prior to the proposed gathering.
The purpose of the meeting shall be to elect officers for the
coming year, receive reports from retiring officers, and attend
to any matters brought to the meeting for consideration. Financial
accounts for the previous year shall be presented to the meeting
, but shall be audited before being approved by the Council. The
Executive shall arrange such audit as is required.
Officers of the Council, to be elected at the annual general meeting,
shall comprise a chairman, a vice chairman, a secretary and a
The officers will form the Executive of the Council and shall
have the right to co-opt such persons as they deem necessary for
the fulfilment of its work. Those co-opted shall not have a vote
on any matter requiring a ballot to reach a decision. Any vacancy
in elected positions may be filled by the Executive on a temporary
basis if necessary until the next annual general meeting.
7. President and vice presidents.
Appointments to the positions of president and vice presidents
may be made by the Executive, but shall require to be confirmed
at the annual general meeting
8. Meetings of the Council
a. The Executive may call, or approve of the calling of, any meeting
of the membership at any time between annual general meetings
in furtherance of the aims of the Council.
b All meetings shall be held at commonly accepted sociable hours
and at venues in the United Kingdom accessible by public transport.
c Only financial members will be eligible to vote on matters for
which a vote has been sought.
d A quorum for any meeting requiring a vote to resolve or determine
matters or elect officers shall be 20% of the total financial
membership at the time of the meeting.
e A change to the constitution shall require the approval of 75%
of those financial members attending unless the Council resolves
by majority vote that the matter should be determined by a postal
ballot of all financial members. In such circumstances a change
to the constitution shall require the approval of 75% of those
Be open to the spirit,
exude humble strength,
celebrate life emergent, and
find the promise of journeying