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Mar 25 2008
outside US, church leaders seek new course

I found this article in the Globe and Mail to be quite interesting. The point seems to be that in Canada and Great Britain, church leaders recognize that their former followers can no longer believe in the Bible as "truth" and are now attempting to modify their religions to be less theological. (In other words, they seem to be changing the same way the Unitarian church changed long ago, into a source of ritual, uplifting music and inspirational sermons without the claims of divine inspiration or absolute truth.)

Ms. Vosper has written a book, published this week With or Without God: Why the Way We Live is More Important than What We Believe in which she argues that the Christian church, in the form in which it exists today, has outlived its viability and either it sheds its no-longer credible myths, doctrines and dogmas, or it's toast.

She is considered one of the bright, if unconventional, minds within the United Church, Canada's largest Protestant Christian denomination. She holds a master of divinity degree from Queen's University and was ordained in 1992. She founded and chairs the Toronto-based Canadian Centre for Progressive Christianity.

Other Christian clergy and theologians have talked about the need to dramatically reform the doctrines of a faith that, with the exception of its vibrancy in the United States, has lost huge numbers of adherents throughout the Western world it once dominated as Christendom. In Canada, where 75 per cent of the population self-identifies as Christian, only about 16 per cent attend weekly services.

Addressing those statistics, what Ms. Vosper proposes is not so much reform as a scorched-earth approach.

I particularly like the clause "with the exception of its vibrancy in the United States"...nicely put.

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