‘FULCRUM’ Event: Is the C. of E. Doomed to Fail?

Is the Church of England drinking in the last chance saloon? An invitation to discuss the future at our next Pivot^Point event on Thursday 16th April…

Dear Fulcrum Subscriber,

We realise this is a very busy time of year for many. But we wanted to let you know about our next Pivot^Point event – happening in a few weeks time.

Pivot^Points aims to get the conversation going about how we can play our part in growing God’s Kingdom. This series will look at a wide variety of topics, but will always revolve around that core theme. The next event is happening on Thursday 14th April from 6-8pm.

Earlier this year, a series of reports were published by the Church of England. In this session, we’ll attempt to explain what they mean, assess their strengths and weaknesses and answer the fundamental question: Will the reform and renewal programme play a part in reversing the decline in numbers in our congregations?

Our two speakers are:

The Rt Revd Pete Broadbent – Bishop of Willesden. He is the Chair of the Spring Harvest Leadership Team and was a longstanding member of the General Synod. He chaired the Church of England’s task group on simplification which has recommended wholesale changes to the way the church is administered.

The Revd Dr Ian Paul – one of the leading Christian bloggers in the UK. He is Associate Minister of St Nic’s, Nottingham, Director of Publishing at Grove Books and an honourary (sic) lecturer at the University of Nottingham. Ian has written about the Church of England’s reform process – especially as it affects ministerial training.

Chairing the event is The Revd Rachel Marszalek – Vicar of All Saints, Ealing. She’s a prolific blogger, involved in New Wine Women, the Junior Evangelical Anglican Network and the General Secretary of Fulcrum.

The event is happening in the newly opened conference centre at St James the Less, Pimlico – located very close to Victoria tube station. All you need to do to secure your ticket is to register via eventbrite simply by clicking here (also click that link for more information on the event).

Please pass this invitation on to anyone in your church (or anyone else!) who may be interested in this fascinating and vital topic.

With every blessing for a profound and joyful Holy Week and Easter,

The Fulcrum Team

This widely advertised ‘Pivot-Point’ conference, to be hosted by the Church of England’s Evangelical ginger group ‘Fulcrum’, promises to be a lively encounter – especially for those con/evos in the Church of England who happen to contest the way in which their branch of the Anglican Communion is handling its affairs into the future.

 The two advertised Speakers at this ‘conference’ will be examining the ways in which ‘Fulcrum’ believes the Church of England may be resiling from its responsibility for evangelism – as the national Church in England and Wales

Ostensibly, this conference is set to concentrate on the proposed reorganisation of the way in which the Church – amongst other proposed reforms – intends to deal with the future resourcing of ministry, principally through the authority of diocesan bishops, who have the task of accepting candidates for ministry, but who now will also be responsible for choosing how and where their candidates will be theologically educated.

This, of course, may be seen to threaten the economies of existing theological schools and colleges (some in universities), whose faculties are currently funded either by Church Trusts or by the State.

A recent Letter sent by theologians from various theological schools has already been addressed to Church authorities, protesting at the expected devolution of their centralised provenance to the bishops of individual dioceses of the Church. This would seem, also, to hand over selection of candidates for ministry – formerly exercised by a central authority (once known as CACTM: Central Advisory Council for Training for the Ministry) – to the dioceses in which they will be expected to serve.

While this is a serious matter for the Church, and for the theological institutions that currently serve the Church’s purposes in theological education, there will, undoubtedly, be other concerns that will exercise the proponents of each side of the arguments in debate.

While Bishop Pete Broadbent – a modern, Evangelical Bishop in the Church of England – is keen to forward the reorganization of the Church’s administration, to bring about what he sees as its necessary stripping down for evangelical action; his co-Speaker, Dr. Ian Paul, ‘ Associate Minister (sic) of St Nic’s, Nottingham, Director of Publishing at Grove Books and an honourary (sic) lecturer at the University of Nottingham’ is an ardent web-campaigner against Gay clergy and Same-Sex Marriage. He  is also concerned that the Church of England may be falling short of what he sees as its conservative evangelical duty to maintain the status quo in its judgement of matters of sexual morality.

Oh, to be a fly on the wall at this upcoming conference! It will be most interesting to see how these two, high-profile, Evangelical campaigners in the Church of England will asses the strengths and weaknesses of their Church, at this Fulcrum ‘tipping-point’ .

Father Ron Smith, Christchurch, New Zealand

About kiwianglo

Retired Anglican priest, living in Christchurch, New Zealand. Ardent supporter of LGBT Community, and blogger on 'Thinking Anglicans UK' site. Theology: liberal, Anglo-Catholic & traditional. regarding each person as a unique expression of Christ, and therefore lovable.
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