Two underlying questions through all the years of this blog have been "quo vadis?" or "which way" is (a) Anglicanism headed and (b) Christianity in Kiwiland headed?
I note to you, therefore, in respect of the latter question, two public lectures advertised thus:
"You may be interested in attending one or both of these lectures host by the St Andrew’s Trust for the Study of Religion and Society held at St Andrew’s on the Terrace Church, 30 The Terrace, Wellington.
“The types of Christianity which flourish in New Zealand in some respects seem very sectarian. They take a very narrow approach to faith and they are exclusive in their membership and they are not particularly interested in interacting with wider social and political issues. Is this an indication of the future of Christianity, increasingly locked into a narrow cultural backwater? There is another side of the argument that certainly the religious landscape is becoming much more pluralist, but at the same time even the most sectarian of faiths – Pentecostal, Mormon, even Jehovah Witnesses and Exclusive Brethren – are being reshaped so that sectarian is not as narrow as it used to be.”"
Unfortunately I will not be in Wellington on either date so I can only hope that these (very apt, interesting and timely) lectures might be made available soon after for public reflection.
I am particularly interested in Peter Lineham's lecture topic. It looks like it is engaging with the observable phenomenon that as census numbers for Christians decline we see the congregation in the church up the road increasing its numbers.
I am also interested in his topic re the Anglican church because, arguably, in certain ways, both at liberal and at conservative ends of the spectrum of theologies, we are becoming sectarian; to say nothing of the question of whether adherence to "books" as main apparatus of our liturgical worship makes us seem as "odd" as some "sects" appear to be to the general secular public.
How we are seen by the general secular public relates to the focus of Geoff Troughton's lecture and thus reading (or hearing) both lectures will be highly interesting.
UPDATE: ON MONDAY I WILL POST AN ADVERTISEMENT FOR AN EVENT IN CHRISTCHURCH AT WHICH PETER LINEHAM WILL SPEAK RE THE FUTURE OF THE CHURCH ... IN CHRISTCHURCH!