While the blogosphere is working itself up into a pre-Lambeth peak of excitement .. hereabouts we’re doing a bit of light pruning in the Lord’s vineyard.
The Clergy Conference is nearly planned for next January – looking at worship and how it might meet the challenge in the Nine Marks … worship which transforms and renews. And I’ve been down in Alloa this evening helping them to explore how a congregation which has developed a strong collaborative ministry ethos might grow and develop without losing that.
It would be wrong to suggest that the big issues of Lambeth simply aren’t relevant to the kind of church which will develop at local level. But I find at that local level an absence of passion about the issue. Concern and interest – yes. But passion – no
Miss D, Egham Parish church near where I live has a plaque stating that Wesley ‘passed this way’. In fact he was chased out the town when he tried to preach in the churchyard. How times change. There have always been these painful transition periods — Luther etc. Perhaps best to take the long view?
I just wish we could get past all this political stuff and just go about doing the work that God has called us to do, to preach the Gospel, to feed the hungry, to clothe the naked, to house the poor, to visit the prisoner, to comfort the sick, et cetera . . . instead of all this schismatic talk of which I’m frankly extremely tired of of and wish God would just put a stop to.
But at deep, deep structure level there is a connection at the local church level throughout the UK. Closely linked with the current debates is the fact that in very general terms, churches these days can be divided into those which are ‘an extension of the parental living room’, and those where the parental living room is ‘an extension of the church’. These two types of church are not really aware of this, and are not really even aware that the other type of church really exists at this level. Researching this kind of thing at church coal-face level is very revealing and totally challenging to ‘we know this — yes, we all know this’. There are few things more humbling — and enlightening — than evidence.
Hmm, yes. I find there’s only so long one can spend perusing Thinking Anglicans before the flood of news becomes too much a torrent.
Having got the shape of the (remnants of the) Anglican Communion, passion has been lacking for about 3-6 months here.
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