The Marriage and Relationships Task Group of the Methodist Church has announced that it will present a report to the 2019 Conference with recommendations about various issues to do with relationships in general and marriage in particular. Details are reproduced below, together with some Ancillary Documents and links to other relevant material.
David Pocklington, "Marriage and Relationships 2019: Methodist Church" in Law & Religion UK, 14 May 2019
Our 29th Beer and Theology, in association with The Centre for Theology and Community and the Hurtado Jesuit Centre, will be with Graham Kings and Tom Greenwood (a researcher at Goldsmiths University working on Civil Society Futures) and Adrian Greenwood (Deputy Chair of Southwark Diocesan Synod and on Archbishops’ Council).
The subject will be "Civil Society Futures"
This is open to all and provides a chance to get together, have a drink, meet some new faces and talk about theology.
We shall be meeting on the ground floor of the pub, for wheelchair access.
It's 6.30pm-8.30pm on Friday 14th June at The Angel (101 Bermondsey Wall East, Rotherhithe, SE16 4NB).
Past Beer and Theology Events
Beer & Theology One. David Barclay 05/02/16 :- How churches talk about money
Beer & Theology Two. Rebecca Gormally 18/03/16 :- Crisis in Children's Care & Education
Beer & Theology Three. Jos Downey 13/05/16 :- Science and Theology
Beer & Theology Four. Angus Ritchie 01/07/16 :- What is Sacramental Life?
Beer & Theology Five. John Moffat SJ 16/09/16 :- Eucharistic Economics
Beer & Theology Six. Andy Walton 04/11/16 :- Strike A Happy Media
Beer & Theology Seven. Lily Botras 02/12/16 :- What Happened to the Arab Spring?
Beer & Theology Eight. Dr Muthuraj Swamy 06/01/17:- Inter Faith Dialogue: Is it Worth It?
Beer & Theology Nine. Jamie Klair 17/02/17:- London's Nigerian Pentecostal Proliferation
Beer & Theology Ten. Simon Lewis 17/03/2017:- A Christian's heart for Art
Beer & Theology Eleven. Richard Sudworth 05/05/17:- Christian-Muslim Relations
Beer & Theology Twelve. Dr Rachel Burke 16/06/17:- Personhood, Death and the NHS
Beer & Theology Thirteen. Prof Joanildo Burity 14/07/17:- Religion and Politics in Brazil
Beer & Theology Fourteen. Julie Gittoes 08/09/17:- Singleness
Beer & Theology Fifteen. Dan Warnke. 27/10/17:- A Disabled Church?
Beer & Theology Sixteen. Guido de Graaff. 1/12/17:- Friendship
Beer & Theology Seventeen. Elizabeth Adekunle. 19/1/18:- Feminism
Beer & Theology Eighteen. Buki Fatona. 2/3/18:- The Mind
Beer & Theology Nineteen. Loretta Minghella. 20/4/18. Power and Vulnerability
Beer & Theology Twenty. Rose Waite. 25/5/18. Women and Power in the Workplace.
Beer & Theology Twenty-One. Simon Stocks. 29/6/18. Lament.
Beer & Theology Twenty-Two. David Atkinson. 7/9/18. Climate Change.
Beer & Theology Twenty-Three. Jemma Gilbert. 27/10/18. Social Prescription.
Beer & Theology Twenty-Four. Dr Frank Curry. 23/11/18. Jesus, the Church and the Poor?
Beer & Theology Twenty-Five. Hannah Swithinbank. 11/1/19. International Development and Lifestyle Choices.
Beer & Theology Twenty-Six. Muthuraj Swamy. 22/2/19. Reconciliation.
Beer & Theology Twenty-Seven. Mark Clavier. 29/3/19. Consumer Culture: Insights from Augustine
Beer & Theology Twenty-Eight. Margaret Cave. 10/5/19. Being an Evangelist in the Parish
I was checking my diary for this week when the news came in of the death of Doris Day.
Bishop Nick Baines blog. 14 May 2019
An Anglican Church which was first created to care for English-speaking workers on the Suez Canal has celebrated its 130th anniversary.
The Bishop of Colombo, Dhiloraj Canagasabey, urges Sri Lankans to unite and appreciate religious and ethnic diversity in the country.
Brian Stanley, Christianity in the Twentieth Century: A World History (Princeton University Press, 2018)
Professor Brian Stanley is the doyen of British historians of mission and world Christianity. Christianity in the Twentieth Century: A World History (Princeton, 2018) is his magnum opus.
Stanley’s hinterland may be helpful in understanding the wisdom of his book. He was supervised for his Cambridge PhD in history by David Thompson. Stanley taught Church history at Trinity College, Bristol, before being invited to direct the North Atlantic Missiology Project of the Cambridge Faculty of Divinity. The project was based at the Henry Martyn Centre for the Study of Mission and World Christianity.
This six-year international and inter-university project (later called Currents in World Christianity) linked the universities of Cambridge, Edinburgh, and London with the University of Wisconsin, Boston College, and Fuller Theological Seminary. It published 27 volumes in Eerdmans’ Studies in the History of Christian Missions series, of which Stanley was the co-editor.
Stanley became director of the Henry Martyn Centre (now the Cambridge Centre for World Christianity) in 2002, before moving to the University of Edinburgh in 2009, to be professor of world Christianity and director of Centre for the Study of World Christianity. He has supervised 25 PhD dissertations, edits the Edinburgh journal Studies in World Christianity, and is a member of the editorial board of the Cambridge Journal of Ecclesiastical History.
His previous books include The Bible and the Flag: Protestant Mission and British Imperialism in the 19th and 20th Centuries (1990); The History of the Baptist Missionary Society 1792-1992 (1992); World Christianities c. 1815-c. 1914, Vol. 8 in the Cambridge History of Christianity (2008) [co-edited]; The World Missionary Conference, Edinburgh 1910 (2009); and The Global Diffusion of Evangelicalism: the Age of Billy Graham and John Stott (2013).
From this rich hinterland, Stanley writes a magisterial book. Part of its originality is the intriguing shape he has developed for each of the chapters: an introduction setting out the subject, two regions of the world as case studies, often manifesting unconventional juxtapositions, and concluding reflections.
The 15 chapters consider the following themes across dozens of countries: the First World War; Nationalism; Conversion; Church-State Relations; Belonging and Believing; the Ecumenical Movement; Genocide; Islamic contexts; Post-Colonialism and Vatican II; Liberation; Apartheid and Indigenous Rights; Gender and Sexuality; Pentecostalism; Eastern Orthodoxy; and Migrant Churches.
Stanley argues his case for using the phrase Global South in preference to Non-Western, Majority World, or Developing World. He states his purpose:
To understand how the churches of the world got to be the way they were in specific geographical locations at crucial turning points in the course of the [20th] century. (p.4)
He shows how the Christian faith is now a
culturally plural and geographically polycentric religion clustered around a number of new metropolitan loci in the non-European world, from Seoul to São Paulo. (p. 4)
Stanley manages to highlight the unlikely people of influence in history, such as Amir Sjarifoeddin, an Indonesian Lutheran layman and nationalist politician, and Patricia Brennan, a Sydney evangelical Anglican who shaped the Movement for the Ordination of Women in Australia.
If popes and archbishops find themselves playing second fiddle to comparatively unknown laywomen and laymen, that is no bad thing, for this is a history of Christianity in its myriad popular embodiments, not a narrow institutional history of denominations and their higher echelons of leadership. (p. 6)
Perhaps this perspective of Stanley, the Baptist layman, is worth contrasting with the work of the late Anglican historian and Provost, David L. Edwards, whose seminal early work was Leaders of the Church of England, 1828-1978 (1971).
The impact of women is also highlighted: Christabel Pankhurst, the English suffragette who was also an Adventist (Chap 1); Pilar Bellosilo, the Spanish President of the World Union of Catholic Women’s Organisations (Chap 9); and “Pandita” Ramabai Dongre, the Indian Pentecostal Leader (Chap 13).
More often than not the role of female Christians in the narrative remains inevitably veiled in such historical anonymity, but it must be stressed that anonymity need not imply marginality. (p. 7)
In his chapter on Migrant Churches, (Chap 15), he notes the significance of language:
By the year 2012, within the Catholic archdiocese of Los Angeles alone, the Eucharist was being celebrated in forty-two different languages. (p. 340)
Concerning the German Christian response to Nazism and the Catholic hierarchy’s response to the Rwandan genocide, he comments:
In both cases Christian thinkers had failed to provide robust opposition to fundamentally anti-Christian ideologies, and had reaped the harvest of their timidity. (p. 362)
Since this book was published, Pope Francis announced in February 2019 that the Vatican Secret Archives on the papacy of Pius XII will be opened to historians in 2020. These documents will enhance the primary source material available for debates about Pius XII’s response to Nazism.
Undoubtedly the most striking single contrast between the face of the world church in 1900 and that of the world church in 2000 is the salience and near ubiquity of Pentecostal styles of Christianity by the end of the century — forms of Christian expression that in 1900 were still uncommon and deemed to be at best eccentric and at worst heretical. (p. 365)
He concludes with a tilt at the prosperity gospel:
The most serious challenge confronting the religion in the twenty-first century looks likely to be the preparedness of some sections of the church in both northern and southern hemispheres to accommodate the faith to ideologies of individual enrichment. (p. 366)
Two minor points of criticism may be the lack of discussion of the Christian ecological movements at the end of the century, especially in the World Council of Churches, and a strange bibliographical lacuna: Diarmaid MacCulloch’s colossal History of Christianity: The First Three Thousand Years (Allen Lane, 2009).
This book, by a master historian, is exceptional and well worth buying, reading, and referencing. No theological or historical library should be without it.
This review first appeared on Covenant and we are grateful for permission to reproduce it here.
A new Research Centre has been opened in Cairo as part of a newly renovated archive facility for the Episcopal Diocese of Egypt.
Jean Vanier, the founder of the international L'Arche movement died on 7 May 2019. Theologian Stanley Hauerwas is a long-time friend of Vanier, and the two of them collaborated on a book titled Living Gently in a Violent World.
Stanley Hauerwas. ABC Religion & Ethics. 9 May 2019
Matthew Guest. Christian Today 11 May 2019
Justin Brierley. Premier. 11 May 2019
David Ford. LSE Blog. 10 May 2019
Emily McFarlan Miller, Religion News Service. 4 May 2019
The 17th meeting of the Anglican Consultative Council came to an end on Sunday with a Eucharist in St John’s Cathedral in Hong Kong.
Directors of programme areas at the Anglican Communion Office have reported on their activity over the past three years to ACC members.
A passionate debate at ACC-17 about sexuality ended with opposing bishops embracing while members sang “Bless the Lord, my soul”.
The Archbishop of Canterbury delivered a Presidential Address during the seventeenth meeting of the Anglican Consultative Council.
British Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt has affirmed the UK's commitment to addressing the persecution of Christians following a meeting of faith leaders at the official residence of the Archbishop of Canterbury on Wednesday.
Christian Today 9 May 2019
A senior Irish imam has paid a solidarity visit to Christ Church Cathedral in Dublin after the terror attack on churches in Sri Lanka.
The Archdeacon of Wairarapa, Waitohiariki Quayle, will be the first female Maori bishop when she is consecrated Bishop of Upoko o Te Ika.
The Bishop of Truro, Philip Mounstephen, has delivered "a truly sobering read" in a report about the global persecution of Christians.