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john davies
notes from a small vicar
from a parish
in Liverpool, UK

    Thursday, January 09, 2003
    Where danger and opportunity meet
     
    "The church has always been in crisis" says David Bosch in Transforming Mission. And that's a good thing to learn in this time of crisis, because crisis, failure and suffering are what it needs "in order to become fully alive to its real nature and mission."

    Well, I'm glad of that insight, because it puts so much into perspective. It emerged today from discussions in the 'alternative' study group I'm in and while it sounds negative on the surface, it's not at all: as Bosch explains:
      "Let us also know that to encounter crisis is to encounter the possibility of truly being the church. The Japanese character for 'crisis' is a combination of the characters for 'danger' and 'opportunity' (or 'promise'); crisis is therefore not the end of opportunity only its beginning, the point where danger and opportunity meet, where the future is in the balance and where events can go either way."
    Blimey. They never taught us that at theological college either. And while it leaves us in a delicate position Bosch insists that the vast shifts the world is going through now, are not the first; the church has been through them before and Transforming Mission takes us through them again so as to be well equipped to face the present crisis. I bought it at college; never read it. Till today. I think it may be unputdownable.