Some Christians will see this event as a sign of discernment, others as a sign of desperation.
The Anglican Diocese of Ottawa is presenting a symposium this weekend featuring emerging church guru Brian McLaren. The symposium will be held Friday (tomorrow) between 2 pm and 8:30 pm, and Saturday from 9 am until about 3 pm.
The Ottawa Citizen has the story on the controversial writer’s upcoming visit.
Can Brian McLaren heal the fractured Anglican church with a new vision of Christianity for the 21st century?
The balding, bespectacled baby boomer is one of the leading lights in a new Christian movement: church without speeches, rules, robes — sometimes without churches.
Ottawa’s Anglicans have invited this leader of the “emerging church” movement to speak tomorrow and Saturday so that he might show them how to stay faithful — and hopeful — during a time when Anglicans are undergoing one of the most wrenching times in their church’s history.
The notice at the diocese’s events page does not give a location but, according to the Citizen, the place to be is the St Elias Centre, 750 Ridgewood Avenue. Registration fee is $65.
I have not read any of Mr McLaren’s books nor have I attended one of his public lectures, so I can’t offer an informed opinion of his thought. Friends whose opinion I respect say that his theology is wishy-washy, if not problematic.
Of course, not everyone buys the emerging church philosophy. Critics say they are appropriating the word Christian to mean liberal and they wonder whether its lack of doctrine would lead it to come unmoored from the basic understanding of Christ. The emergent church also sees truth as a relative thing, which leans pretty heavily on faith as it is experienced, rather than dogma or orthodoxy, which can keep it on the rails, not only to individuals, but to communities.
Sounds like Mr McLaren could find a sizeable natural constituency in the Anglican Church of Canada.
Cross-posted at Magic Statistics.