Academic journal article Anglican Theological Review

Anglican Diversity: Challenges for the Twenty-First Century

Academic journal article Anglican Theological Review

Anglican Diversity: Challenges for the Twenty-First Century

Article excerpt

Anglican Diversity: Challenges for the Twenty-First Century. By Patricia Bays' Toronto: ABC Publishing, 2001. 128 pp. CDN $14.95 (paper).

When I remarked to a friend that I was reading Patricia Bays's latest contribution to the literature of Anglicanism, he remarked that he thought I would have a good read.

Anglican Diversity: Challenges for the Twenty-First Century provides interesting discussion points and material. In general, it is a well-written little book based on the Martin lectures that Bays has given. In her introduction, Bays states that she wants to address some of the "many issues in that church, [which] have forced [Anglicans] to ask themselves: What constitutes Anglicanism?" (p. 9) This task she meets head on. Although no concrete solutions are offered-as, indeed, there are none in this reviewers opinion-she presents an engaging and insightful discussion of them.

Bays situates Anglicanism within the world context. In a period "of profound change" (p. 15), it is necessary to come to terms with the immediate world in light of the gospels. She asks questions such as: Is there a "distinctly Anglican approach to theology" (p. 14) which allows us to exist in the world and in the church at the same time?

Her last chapter is the most engaging because she grapples with the future of Anglicanism. This is a question Canadian Anglicans have had to ask, faced with the reality of a huge financial crisis related to the residential schools. Bays, however, takes the issue of the survival of Anglicanism as something more than the survival of a church hierarchy. …

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