Cooper & Cary Have Words

There is a new podcast in town. As if the world needed more over-educated white men talking.

But actually, there’s not much out there in this area; serious but witty discussion of the Christian faith, culture, the arts, history and theology.

And so, Barry Cooper and James Cary present Cooper & Cary Have Words.

Subscribe on iTunes here. Or via Stitcher here. Or listen via Soundcloud here.

Show Notes – Episode 9: The Truth About Santa

Should Christians tell their kids the truth about Santa? James and Barry give Father Christmas some festive stuffing. Plus the faucet saga continues.

That extraordinary and worrying story on This American Life

Wendy Thomas Russell, PBS “Why you should lie to your kids about Santa”

100 Cupboards by Nate Wilson

Tweet us @cooperandcary or email us at Or find us on Facebook.


Show Notes – Episode 8: Answering Questions with Questions?

Is a faucet the same as a tap? And what on earth is a spigot? James and Barry consult an expert. Oh, and there’s also some less important stuff about evangelism and Christian movies.

Questioning Evangelism: Engaging People’s Hearts the Way Jesus Did by Randy Newman

Luther: The Life and Legacy of the German Reformer

Show Notes – Episode 7: The Forgotten Commandment

Barry & James talk about Thanksgiving and the importance of gratitude, and then look ahead to Christmas with an interview with comedian Paul Kerensa.


Mince pies: A small sweet pastry pie containing spiced fruit. Why Mince? It used to be minced meat. Why? It’s complicated.

Boxing Day: December 26th, which is a Bank Holiday in England & Wales. Why Boxing Day? It’s complicated.

Oliver Cromwell: Puritan Leader of Parliament who defeated Charles I, had him executed and had himself made Lord Protector of the Commonwealth/Republic. How did that all go? It’s really complicated.

The Most Repeated Command in the Bible

That Episode of Freakonomics about gratitude

People might also enjoy this TED talk by David Steindl on being grateful 

Paul Kerensa’s book Hark!: The Biography Of Christmas 

Paul Kerensa’s Comedians & Carols 

Tweet us @cooperandcary or email us at Or find us on Facebook.


Show Notes – Episode 6: The God of Open Options

Barry & James talk about Christmas lights, Middle English and the tyranny of choice.

The God of Open Options (Christianity Today article) by Barry Cooper

More Choices, Less Commitment (The Gospel Coalition) by Barry Cooper

Do You Suffer From Decision Fatigue by John Tierney in NY Times

Paradox of Choice by Barry Schwartz

A Secular Age by Charles Taylor

Our Secular Age by Collin Hansen

Principles of War: A Handbook on Strategic Evangelism by Jim Wilson

Bowling Alone: The Collapse and Revival of American Community by Robert Putnam

Up in the Air by Jason Reitman starring George Cloony

Show Notes – Episode 5: The Cult of Personality Tests

Barry (INFJ) and James (INFP) talk about personality tests, Myers Briggs, Enneagrams, Hamlet and Kevin Pietersen.

The Road to Character by David Brooks

The Road Back To You by Ian Morgan Cron and Suzanne Stabile

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Show Notes – Episode 4: Was Jesus Funny?

Barry & James ask whether Jesus was – or is – funny, as well as thinking about Luther’s jokes and the role of comedy in preaching.

That John Piper clip here.

You can hear Yvonne Lyon here.

The Humor of Christ by Elton Trueblood

Samson and the Pirate Monks: Calling Men to Authentic Brotherhood by Nate Larkin

Comment on our Facebook group Leave us a review on iTunes.

Tweet us on @cooperandcary or email us at

Show Notes – Episode 3: Hocus Pocus

Barry & James talk about the weather, obviously, and Halloween. Plus a cameo from Barry’s dad and a brand new theme tune.

Steve Jeffery’s brilliant ‘Do You Believe in Ghosts?’ talk here.

Barry’s Book:

Living Life Backward: How Ecclesiastes Teaches Us To Live In Light of The End by David Gibson

Worst Front Cover Ever?

James’s Book:

Unholy Spirits by Gary North

Barry’s Phat Beats:

Oh Wonder – Lifetimes (Everything Everything Remix)

Theme Tune: Time Track by Roger Taylor

Find more from Roger here.

A Monk’s Tale CD here.


Show Notes – Episode 2: Dreams, Doors & Casting Couches

Barry and James discuss Martin Luther, Ulrich Zwingli, Harvey Weinstein, the Mike Pence Rule and Puritans. And the weather. Briefly.

James Cary’s live show, A Monk’s Tale, is here

Barry Cooper’s Luther documentary is here

Article by James Cary about The Mike Pence Rule is here

The History Boys by Alan Bennet is here

Worldly Saints: The Puritans As They Really Were by Leland Ryken is here

The Road to Somewhere by David Goodhart is here


Show Notes – Episode 1: A Game of Hurricanes

Barry and James talk about Martin Luther’s 95 Theses, whether Christians should watch Game of Thrones, and recommend a couple of books.

Kevin DeYoung on Game of Thrones here and again here

James Cary’s live show, A Monk’s Tale, is here.

Barry Cooper’s Luther documentary is here.

Carl Trueman Lectures on Luther are here.

Get hold of The Righteous Mind by Jonathan Haidt here.

And The Divided Self by RD Laing here.