Anabaptist Witness, Volume 2, Number 1, April 2015:
A Global Anabaptist and Mennonite Dialogue on Key Issues Facing the Church in Mission
Anabaptist witness, like Christian witness more generally, necessarily involves
interaction with persons and communities of other religions and none. This
necessity arises from two considerations. The first is the missional constitution
of the church: the church is sent into the world as a liberation community embodying
and announcing God's peaceable reign. As sent, the church's activity
takes the form of witness to its sender, Jesus Christ. This witness, as is evident
in global Anabaptist witness today, includes worship, prayer, collaboration,
protest, sharing, friendship, argument, teaching, learning, and many other
practices undertaken to, for, and with the world.
The other consideration is the reality of globalization and the geographical extension of religious pluralism that it has enabled. Although it is true that Christianity has always been in contact with religious others, many observers suggest that globalization represents a new context for Christian witness. Mass transportation and media enable people, goods, and ideas to circulate around the globe at unprecedented speeds. If rampant economic inequalities mean the world is far from “flat,” it is yet connected across its peaks and valleys like never before.
Consideration of the church's missional constitution and context lead, therefore, to the claim that interaction with religious others is a necessary element of Anabaptist witness. But what does this interaction look like? What should it look like? What resources do Christian theology and missiology offer as guides to understanding and engaging other religions? The essays in this issue of Anabaptist Witness offer various responses to these questions, questions that make up the field of the “theology of religions.”
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|Publisher||Anabaptist Mennonite Biblical Seminary|
|Call ID||NF 266 Pi|
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