Sunday, August 10, 2008

The Anglican Mission to secular society

The Christchurch Press, Saturday 9 August 2008, offers an editorial headed, "Anglicans should resist extremes as they struggle for unity". It is percipient in a manner suggestive of an Anglican writing it! I can imagine that some Anglicans in the Diocese of Christchurch may find some of its phrasings not to their taste, but I hope all Anglicans there, and elsewhere in western societies, ponder statements such as these from the editorial.

"[noting conflicts centred on the ordination of women and homosexuals] but those issues represent the much wider and more fundamental issue of how the Anglican Communion is to express its beliefs and conduct itself in a world increasingly secular, sceptical or organised religion and deaf to its message of salvation."

"But the Christchurch Diocese, like the wider church, cannot allow itself to be paralysed in the conduct of its mission by minority dissent that is uncompromising. The church must maintain its traditional openness to change and its ability to address the needs of its contemporary communicants, while toerating a wide expression of views within its fold."

Our gospel mission must go forward, not be diverted by conflicts which, relative to that mission, are petty.

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