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September 22, 2006

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Hi Andy

Next semester for the first time I am going to be teaching a course called 'Baptist Identity' so you just keep these posts coming and I will send the class there...

I am a great fan of the work of 'baptist' theologian, the late James William McClendon Jr. One of his ideas if I remember correctly is the importance of hearing the marginal voice as the voice that may in fact carry the truth.

One or two of us up North here are doing some further thinking on this Church meeting discerning things in terms of how an environment where such can happen needs to be created and that the ability to participate in such may have to be taught as a spiritual discipline rather than just assumed.

Stuart Jenkins

I am also embarking on, well, it won't be a series, but I'll be sneaking teaching about Baptist distinctives into sermons and services over the next few weeks.

I like all of Paul Fiddes' comments, and also Stuart Blythe's above, about listening to the marginal voices. I wonder, though, what that has to teach us about the conduct of church meetings. We're often most concerned about processing business accurately. How would a meeting concerned about listening to the awkward and unforthcoming go about its task?

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