As the Church grapples with widely divergent views of sexuality and the Christian faith, the term ‘Good Disagreement’ has begun to gain currency in the search for reconciliation and a way forward.
The Archbishop of Canterbury used the phrase in his Presidential address to General Synod last year in relation to a number of contentious issues including sexuality.
Accepting Evangelicals has always modelled ‘Good Disagreement’ in its membership by uniting both ‘affirming’ and ‘accepting’ evangelical Christians behind a common purpose of seeing the Church move forward to greater acceptance of same-gender relationships and LGBT Christians.
Now as the Church of England’s Shared Conversations on sexuality begin their next phase, we would like to generate a conversation about what Good Disagreement should look like in practice. To get the conversation going we have commissioned an article by The Very Rev David Ison – Dean of St Paul’s Cathedral – which you will find below.
If you would like to join the conversation, please comment on one of the links below or alternatively why not apply to join the Facebook Group Discussion on ‘Good Disagreement’ by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org ?
David Ison – Good Disagreement?
“Can different groups in the Church of England disagree but still live together? On one level that seems rather a nonsensical question: they’ve been doing it for centuries, with occasional upheavals and realignments, some of which make today’s issues look minor (1662 expulsions of non-conformist ministers, the later Non-Jurors and the secession of the Free Church of England come to mind). But it’s a pressing question today about issues relating to gender and sexuality…”
For the full article – follow this link.
Archbishop of Canterbury – Justin Welby
“Facilitated (Shared) conversations may be a clumsy phrase, but it has at its heart a search for good disagreement. It is exceptionally hard edged, extraordinarily demanding and likely to lead in parts of the world around us to profound unpopularity or dismissal.
This sort of gracious reconciliation means that we have to create safe space within ourselves to disagree, as we began to do last summer at the Synod in York, and as we need to do over the issues arising out of our discussions on sexuality, not because the outcome is predetermined to be a wishy-washy one, but because the very process is a proclamation of the Gospel of unconditionally loving God who gives Himself for our sin and failure. It is incarnational in the best sense and leads to the need to bear our cross in the way we are commanded…”
For a fuller excerpt and a link to the full address – follow this link.
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