18 April 2008

presbyterians remain together

As some of you may recall, around two years ago a bunch of us got together to commit ourselves in our own theological conversation to maintaining a sense of broad charity, ongoing patience, and careful listening, recognizing the complexities and diversity of our ecclesial tradition, even as bounded by the great confessional statements we share.

The result of this effort was a document we called (admittedly somewhat tongue-in-cheek) "Presbyterians & Presbyterians Together." Given subsequent events, conflicts, wranglings, and so forth, the document perhaps seems more quixotic than ever. Nonetheless, over 300 people have signed the document including some in the past few weeks.

While I suspect we still all struggle at times with how we conduct our theological discourse, I think the document has perhaps had a salutary effect in our public speech to one another. Moreover, I know that the document drew various people together and identified them to one another as sharing some important affinities and commitments. This has produced good fruit, including (in an indirect way) the "Conversation on Denominational Renewal" that occurred in February of this year.

The primary reason for my post today, however, is to alert readers to that fact that the original domain that hosted the document (presbyterianstogether.org) is scheduled to expire in a few days. I've created a version of the site on my own domain so that Presbyterians Together will continue to exist and bear witness. Nonetheless, I removed some of the functionality of the original site, in light of its moving to a more "archival" status.

I hope and pray that whatever small beginnings the document may have produced will continue to bear good fruit and that whatever shortcomings and missteps it may have involved may be forgotten or set aside.