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April 02, 2008


michael jensen

This to me is rather cheap point-scoring. But it revealing of how deeply nostalgic Milbank's vision of the church is. And therein, a problem...


As one who is increasingly concerned that the fresh expressions exercise may well be about domesticating missional Church it would be good to read the full thing.

Where can we find/buy the full text?


andy goodliff

If you see the post before this one titled Studies in Christian Ethics, its one of the articles, the link should take you to the abstract.


I think he gets close to making a decent point, but gets lost in defending parishes and 'going' to church.

I thought it was revealing that he suggests that Paul wrote to Galatia and Corinth, when he actually wrote to the churches in those regions.

It seems to me that a more missional article, perhaps considering the planting of churches amongst people-groups receiving the gospel for the first time, might have yielded more helpful conclusions.


Just read the full article, and I think Milbank makes some excellent points, that echo a lot of my concerns with these new attempts at doing missiological church.

I think he is right when he says Paul wrote to Corinth and Galatia, or the church there, rather than to the weaving club. It's clear from Paul's epistles, especially to the Corinthian church, that he is addressing a mix-matched group of people from different classes and cultures, who have nothing in common except that they are believers and they live near each other. Being the Church- being a cohesive community of pick-n-mix cultures, races, hobbies, classes etc- is, think, a far better wittness than trying to set up little homogenous clubs and societies of the like-minded.

But this is not, as Milbank himself alludes, at all a new debate. In Victorian England, the Church was debating the same thing. Should we be reaching out to young men by setting up snooker tables, swimming pools and gymnasiums? (the origin of the YMCA) or should we be trying to draw them into the Church? (see the Oxford and Pietist Movements).

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