The Church as a Forum
Published on: March 16, 2011
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  • Wayne Lusvardi

    “Forum, Not Factor” sounds like Berger’s fellow sociologist James Davison Hunter’s call in his book To Change The Word for a Christian “faithful presence” instead of all the activism or reactionary movements in both Left and Right versions of American Christianity. What Berger seems to be pointing out above is that this “forum” or “faithful presence” needs an institutional locus. The experiences of the Bad Boll Academy may serve as a model for such institutions outside of already established seminaries. Whatever the issue (same sex marriage, pre-emptive wars, etc.) there is no institutional locus for the church to serve as reconciliators of social conflict that is all too often based on social class and not mere theological differences. Churches on the Left and some on the Right just use divisive social issues as the basis for fund raising and numerical growth of congregations while only breeding more social divisiveness and power seeking.

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