Does the Church need Theology?

There I was standing in Waverley Station this morning waiting for SJ to arrive. This was a father and son outing. It was breakfast first then off to New College for a seminar on ' Does the Church Need Theology?" One thing I needed this morning was breakfast, We were surprised how many cafes were closed. We finally got one open on King George 1V Bridge. It was actually a good plate of scrambled eggs. So it was off to new college to see if my brain was scrambled. I guess I was intrigued by the panel of speakers, Dr Paul Nimmo of New College, Rev Vanessa Parr of St Paul's and St Georges's and practical theologian Kathy Galloway representing Christian Aid. I was pleasantly surprised to see such a healthy group of people turning up to engage with the topic. This was an opportunity to begin a dialogue between the local church and academia and also to hear from those involved in overseas development work. It was a brave move by the New College Missionary Society. All three speakers contributed to the topic with a great deal of warmth and enthusiasm and they created an opportunity for a wider discussion to take place. There is no doubt in my mind that the local Church needs to be reflecting on its theological practice. We need to be continually engaging with scripture and allowing the scriptures to speak and to be interpreted by the Spirit of God so that we can engage with the culture. We do this effectively when we are able to have contextualised and understood the world in which we live and the theology we say we believe. We also need to be aware that God speaks to us in the activity of service and obedience. Thus we can often reflect and reassess our theology as we serve God on the ground. It was because "the word became Flesh and dwelt among us", that we were able "to behold his glory" Anyway it was simulating Saturday morning and I found myself straying from time to time touching base with the four social programmes we run out of St Andrew's Bo'ness. More and more I'm convinced that faith is equally encountered in acts of mercy and service as it is through proclamation and academic rigour. One area that we need to reflect a lot more upon is how does the church connect with the corporate world of business. I'm convinced that the gospel has an equal attraction and judgement to make and offer to those who are looking for an alternative to corporate greed. So tell me what do you think

Posted By: italker   On: 14 Feb 2012   At: 11:39pm

Interesting Comment Helmut!


Posted By: Helmut   On: 14 Feb 2012   At: 7:15am

Radio Four (alas - not on LW, but on the computer) has it just now that many Christians have not read anything from the bible in a year, not prayed outside a church etc.

Mind you, at least we Christians have got something to be lazy about! I truly would not know what a member of the atheist or whatever society could possibly be lazy or forgetful about?


Posted By: italker   On: 14 Feb 2012   At: 12:14am

All this shows is that chaplains and people of faith are being perceived by the National Secularist Society as a threat to their philosophical position.  In many ways this kind of thinking is a type of ridged fundementalism that is unwilling to toleate any faith group to speak or contribute to the shaping of the public arena if it is not secularist. We need to promote the importance of tolerance in a just and balanced society. Such tolerance must allow people of faith to contribute to the wider social capital in our societies. If the work of the churches were to be discontinued society would be even more dysfunctional


Posted By: Mike Munro   On: 13 Feb 2012   At: 9:19pm

I remember being at the Try Praying launch last year and got talking to and praying with the chaplain to the business community in Edinburgh and he was telling me about what was needed at that time.Can’t remember his name. I also recall at one time there being an industrial chaplain for the Forth Valley, particularly Grangemouth, Hugh Ormiston. There is probably more need now than ever for the church to connect in this way.

I was also horrified last week to see the NSS writing to the leader of Edinburgh Council asking that chaplains be removed from schools in the city, and even worse, her saying it could be considered. We need to start standing up against these people, although they are confirming the accuracy of the Bible.Deceivers at least.

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