Not much going on in my mind right now. But John Richardson has been doing some thinking about his troubled Church of England and the two 'parties' within it most affected by the consequences of imminent legislation. An excerpt from the whole which is here:
"The Catholic movement did not get where it did by waiting for the Church to enact legislation to provide what it wanted. Yet today it has four dedicated bishops and a dozen or so sympathizers, hundreds of clergy, a multitude of buildings and a host of people. Why, then, is it so much on the back foot?
Now for the Evangelicals. Our problem is simply this: many of us don’t really want to be Church of England, and it shows. As a result, we’ve never organized ourselves to be an effective force within the institution. Instead, we’ve laughed at bishops and ploughed our own individual parish furrows. We’ve never had a vision for the Church of England, because we’ve never really had heart for it. Indeed, for some of us, the prospect of ‘ejection’ is greeted not with gloom but elation, confirming as it does all our prejudices."
A vision for one's church? Now there is a thought! We have a lot of emphasis (in my experience) on vision for one's own local church. Want to grow your church, o vicar? First of all, get a vision, speak it out and make it happen ... but that is always about the parish, scarcely about the diocese, let alone the whole shebang. John Richardson's challenge is to 'think big.'
It is not as though far away Down Under we have no need of that big encompassing vision ...