Tuesday, May 06, 2008

general conference and the apostolic mission

I paint with a broad brush here, but Methodists have always been stronger at feeling and doing than thinking. I came to this realization at General Conference, where we would occasionally act on, ignore, or comtemplate studies of various subjects. At times, studies are floated for the purpose of avoiding action; this is not always bad---we have made terrible decisions "in the moment". Since we are so polarized at this meeting, it is worth noting that both left and right push issues to study groups when it in their interest to do so. I was pleased that we had some reflection on the place of the Trinity in relation to the proposed social creed; I participated on the floor on this, and was also pleased that it was finally described as a litany rather than a creed---I think this was more accurate. I also think it is good to continue to study the ordained ministry. We have an incoherent understanding of the practice of ordained ministry, and one thousand highly politicized and increasingly exhausted people are not best positioned to sort all of this out.

Since most of the Methodist blogosphere is dominated with questions of same-sex attraction and general conference, I would propose that anyone who was present in Fort Worth read Philip Jenkins' The Next Christendom (Oxford University Press). We can spend the next few years sorting out ways to organize ourselves in relation to Christians in the two-thirds world, for our own political or economic advantage, or we can join together in the mission of God with them, and/or we can learn something about the apostolic mission that is happening beyond our borders. Perhaps they can teach us to re-evangelize North American culture?


Blogger Craig L. Adams said...

Quote:Perhaps they can teach us to re-evangelize North American culture?

Or: perhaps they could be shunted off into a Regional Conference to make sure they don't.

6:30 AM  

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