Tuesday, January 15, 2008

The Church And "Para-Church"

In an illuminating discussion on the meaning of laity and clergy, Paul Stevens wrote, “Clergy must be liberated by laity from having the impossible task of representing the entire ministry of the church. Laity must be liberated from becoming clergy assistants to discover and embrace their own ministry. Pastors then become assistants to the rest of the people of God. This mutual liberation must be a ministry of love, not rebellion.”

Check out the Lausanne document on “The Relationship between Church and Para-Church Organizations”. In this paper, I try to describe a Para-church Organization I am a member of, namely Graduate Christian Fellowship, indicating its origin, reason for existence, particular emphases, and the way it relates to the church generally, suggesting how both the Para-church Organization and the Church can learn from the Lausanne recommendations that can enable them to function more harmoniously together and achieve their objectives more effectively. Views expressed are entirely the author's alone.

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