Church Times insert

26 October 2007

Page 1

'Delighted' to address MCU conference, proud to be liberal, aware that we're fallible - Gene Robinson.

If God turns you on but rigid beliefs turn you off the MCU might be just what you're looking for - Jonathan Clatworthy.

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Page 2

Who's who in the MCU.

The search for a truth that no-one can own - John Saxbee.

Questions can open our minds - Steven Shakespeare.

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Page 3

Struggle is on for the Anglican soul - the 2008 MCU Conference.

A still, small voice in a global storm - Paul Bagshaw.

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Page 4

Converted to Christ - but not often by Christians - Ray Gaston* at All Hallows Church, Leeds; A smart church with a radical message, 'people matter' - Charles Hedley* at St James' Church, Piccadilly - Betsy Grey.

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Page 5

Adrian Alker* at St Mark's Church, Sheffield - Above the floods but not the fray; 'Through openness, struggle, laughter and prayer we discover the sacred' Maggie Butcher* at St James' Church, Piccadilly - Betsy Grey.

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Page 6

If religion doesn't want to be seen as part of the problem it must work to be part of the solution - Alan Race.

Yes, there are liberal Christians on campus - Liam Purcell.

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Page 7

Strident atheists are the new fundamentalists - Richard Harries.

Beware of the Bible: It's the key to our understanding of Jesus. But he used scripture intelligently and so should we - Keith Ward.

Back with a vengeance, the curse of creationism - Paul Badham.

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Page 8

MCU Conferences: strong views, good friends, and healthy debate - Rosalind Lund.

The nocturnal prowl of the professor in striped pyjamas - Joan Dorrell reviews a history of theologocal education at Cuddeson by Mark Chapman.

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* Some articles had to be abbreviated for publication. The full accounts are here:

Adrian Alker

As floods of biblical proportions devastated low-lying areas of Sheffield in the summer, parish priest Adrian Alker had every reason to be thankful his house was on a hill. More precisely, on Broomhill, in the area west of the city once famously described by John Betjeman as "the prettiest suburb in England" ...

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Maggie Butcher

Maggie Butcher's brief is to preach the sermon at the eucharist on a typical Sunday morning at St James's, taking as her text the church's mission statement. As it happens she's not impressed with mission statements as a concept, associated as they are with image-making and branding in the commercial world. "I'm allergic to them", she admits ...

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Ray Gaston

Just before we meet, Ray Gaston reveals in his church newsletter that he has done his theological profile on the web-based Subversive Christianity 'blogspot'. This is how he looks:

Catholic 79%, Neo orthodox 71%, Emergent/Postmodern 54%, Evangelical Holiness/Wesleyan 50%, Classical Liberal 39%, Charismatic/Pentecostal 29%, Reformed Evangelical 25%, Modern Liberal 18%, Fundamentalist 0%.

Which is interesting, not to mention a bit depressing, because I thought I was going to meet a modern, liberal, Anglican priest ...

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Charles Hedley

When it's time for the notices during the Sunday eucharist at St James's Church, Piccadilly, there's the usual list of parish happenings to report. Tickets for a forthcoming concert are now on sale, proceeds to be shared between Christian Aid and the church restoration fund; volunteers and contributions are needed for the summer bazaar; the patronal festival looms, at which there'll be a bring-and-share lunch in the garden "weather permitting".

So far, so very Church of England ...

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