A Religious Liberal Blog

This site hopefully can provide some vehicle by which I can comment, complain, and once in a while praise the state of religion in this country and around the world from a liberal protestant perspective.

Thursday, December 01, 2005

Recently our UCC/Disciples ministry has sought to be included in an "all campus praise worship" event at our school. When we sought to join this event they presented us with a statement of faith which included statements about hell, christianity is the only way, bodily resurections, etc.

Correction:(They require member groups to endorse this statement. This has the practical effect of weeding out non evangelical christian groups.) Instead we drew up a tentative alternative statement. Still don't have word of their response but I thought I'd post that statement on this site to see what people think:

We likewise affirm our belief in God, the creator and upholder of all things, who has been made known to us in the life and ministry of Jesus the Christ whose life and teaching sought the reconciliation of humans to one another and to God. It is the communion table, open to all, where there are no strangers and outcasts, where this vision is most pointed to in the life of the church.

But we recognize that our world is marked by sin, by estrangement, by the denial of our interrelatedness, where dominion over others appears to be the final word. But we believe it is not, in that when God raised Christ into new life, the possibilities of a new way of life was made open to us and to our world, a life marked by concern for our neighbor and the building of a world where all are valued.

But this cannot come through the decision or will of humans. Rather it comes from the work of God, as expressed in the Holy Spirit, which transforms us to openness and concern for one another. It is that Spirit that calls and sustains the church in its mission of reconciliation. We look with expectation to the eventual union of the whole creation into God’s purposes.


At 7:40 AM , Blogger Sanctimonious Hypocrite said...

Surely they did not write their statement to weed out non-evengalicals, any more than you wrote yours to say, "Oh, Yeah? Let's see how you like it."

At 9:09 AM , Blogger Dwight said...

There was some background not included here: while the worship has been taking place for the last three years and last month we were told no such statement of faith existed within the last few weeks there was a statement produced.

A question could be raised why such a statement had been produced so recently for a group that has been active for the last several years. There could be any number of reasons,including getting clear about the committments of its members.

Likewise it made sense for us to try to work out something that locates the general thought of our ministry to not just engage the all campus worship group but for our own sense of self. Especially for a mainline campus ministry, this strikes me as an important process.

At 9:09 AM , Anonymous Chris T. said...

SH, one of the goals of the alternative statement was to formulate something all the groups could agree on. I don't see what an evangelical could find problematic in our statement, other than believing it doesn't go far enough or something.

At 10:32 AM , Blogger Sanctimonious Hypocrite said...

Certainly; and the presumption of good faith should go both ways.

At 10:59 AM , Blogger Dwight said...

Though to note: I didn't say that the statement was in the effort to weed out non evangelicals, only that the practical effect of such a statement does in fact do so.

At 1:16 PM , Blogger Sanctimonious Hypocrite said...

Fair enough; I should grant you the same presumption I urge you to adopt.

How have they responded to your statement?

At 6:37 PM , Anonymous Peter R. said...

It would be interesting to see the evangelical group's faith statement, and what exactly you objected to.

Having led an evangelical campus ministry myself, I would be very careful about working with another group in a way that might come across as an endorsement of that group's theology, if (as would seem to be the case here) said group held incompatible views on issues such as hell, salvation through Christ alone, and bodily resurrection. Obviously you have similar reservations, which is why you proposed an alternate faith statement.

At 10:15 AM , Blogger Bill Baar said...

Why do you want to join them? What's your goal and purpose to join them? Especially if you think them terribly wrong on things.


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