Saturday, 26 March 2011

The freedom of presbyterianism

I shared with my RevGalPals how, when I moved from my conservative evangelical fellowship in which I had grown up to pursue a call to full time ministry in the Presbyterian church, I experienced an immense sense of freedom. That provoked a few guffaws of laughter. Sometimes the strictures of the Presbyterian church can feel pretty stifling. But, on the whole, it is a broad church where many different approaches to theology can co-exist and where people with many different views can rub along together. That breadth is probably what I value most in Presbyterianism.
It is my hope and prayer that, when threatened with hard decisions and the possibility of schism that we do not become exclusive and sacrifice the breadth that allows the Church of Scotland to be a place of welcome for all.


Songbird said...

That's a good prayer. May it be granted!

Dot said...

A good prayer, indeed!
It's interesting how we see and value the strictures and the structures of the church, all so different and yet can still be the same church!
My recent experience of that broad church is that it is narrowing with a shift back to conservative thinking and conservative practice with different views neither encouraged nor celebrated, but I guess it depends what lens we are looking thro'. I am viewing from a fairly (altho' not radical) liberal perspective and over the last few years the congregation where I worship seems to have become more focused on one interpretation of Scripture (the right and only one!)
The Church of Scotland is a broad church but within that there is a wide spectrum and I am beginning to ponder whether each individual church has a pitch on that spectrum, but within each congregation there is one dominant theological stance?

The most amazing thing is that we are all worshiping the same God, the God of love, and I don't suppose it really matters to Him what church we attend or what theological stance we take, but how we live a life that is different because of His love.

Pray that we can continue being differently the same!

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