The unit focuses on three contemporary challenges to orthodox Christian belief – atheism, pluralism and changing notions of truth - seeking to deepen an understanding of their origins within a wider historical and cultural context. Particular attention focuses on the rise of the so-called ‘new atheism’ and the contrast with older forms of atheism. The social reality and theological challenge presented by religious pluralism is critically examined using a variety of theological resources. The related notion of truth, the rise of dogmatic pluralism and the associated breakdown in notions of authority are examined. Differing theological responses to these issues are examined through engagement with significant texts; the response of the local church to these challenges is addressed in a way that is theologically consistent with the Christian Faith and practically relevant.