Saturday, June 14, 2008

Cultural Diversity = Theological Renewal

Thomas Oden lists what would seem to be a rather generous forty-seven propositions for “theological renewal” of American Protestantism. Proposition seven states: “Christianity is a universal human community embracing all languages and all cultures, in which cultural diversity is essential to its universality. The renewing church reaches out to embrace every class, every culture, every historical and social situation, while seeking to maintain union with Christ” (Neuhaus R J ed. 1988:76). One wonders whether this is stated against the background of the alternative “homogeneous principle” first proposed by Donald McGavran of Fuller Theological Seminary (see elsewhere on this blog). Oden clearly considers that cultural diversity is essential to the renewal of the Church. Being the minister of a multi-cultural Church, I heartily agree with Oden’s proposition -- given, that is, that a Church exists in a multi-cultural environment. QUESTION: Just how does cultural diversity renew the Church? And just how does one "embrace" other cultures?

No comments: