Schwartzentruber Michael. (Editor). The Emerging Christian Way. CooperHouse. 2006.
The editor has assembled fourteen essays by authors of his choice that address for him “The emerging Christian way”. These authors are all associated with mainline churches, i.e. mostly United Church and several Anglican Church. It is their view of ‘emerging’, and some of the distinctives of those church views are a strong thread in their presentations. The ‘evangelical’ authors on this topic are not represented. Since there are so many authors my review will be limited to the titles, authors and brief comments on their point of view.
Marcus Borg. An Emerging Christian View. This essay is a condensed version of his book, The Heart of Christianity, sees book review on this one. Other authors make frequent references to this author.
Tim Scorer. Experience: The Heart of Transformation. Tim is a United Church pastor in Penticton. He was a member of the management team at the Naramata Centre, a retreat and education centre of the United Church of Canada.
Tom Harper. New Creeds. Tom is an Anglican priest who is best known as a Canadian author of topics of religion and contemporary spirituality.
Berry Thomas. The Great Work. Berry entered the monastery in 1934. From 1970-1995 he was the director of Riverdale Centre of Religious Research. The present ‘Great Work’ is to somehow reverse the destruction of the earth’s biosystems, to stop humans from being a “disruptive force on planet earth”. (75)
Sallie McFague. How Should Christians Love Nature. Sallie is a ‘feminist’ (her label) theologian in residence at Vancouver School of Theology. Nature should be viewed “with a loving eye- in terms of a subject knowing another subject especially on the analogy of friendship”. (91)
Matthew Fox. On Being a Postdenominational Priest in a Postdenominational Era. Matthew’s ‘thing’ is “Creation Spirituality”.
Bruce Sanguin. Being Christian in a World of Many Faiths. Bruce is a United Church minister in Vancouver. Bruce presents a “homage based ecumenicalism”. (139) The key to being Christian is being inclusive not in converting.
Anne Squire. Radical Inclusion. ‘Radical inclusion’ describes how Anne interprets Jesus’ teaching on the Kingdom of God.
Bill Phipps. Social Justice and a Spirituality of Transformation. B.P.-United Church activist. Without social justice there can be no spiritual transformation.
Mark Maclean. Worship: Pilgrims in the Faith. M.M.- National worship program coordinator for United Church of Canada.
Bruce Harding. To Sing or Not To Sing. Bruce is a musician/composer who has a concern about a trend that causes less and less actual involvement of congregational singing because of the overpowering amplification of worship teams and their band accompaniment. (I resonate with this evaluation.)
Susan Burt. Christian Education and the Imaginative Spirit. S.B.- Co-ordinating editor of an ecumenical publication in S. Australia. Her focus of Christian Education is within the activities of the church setting.
Donald Grayston. Pastoral Care for the 21st Century. D.G. - is an Anglican theologian and spiritual director. Spiritual direction needs to happen in an age appropriate schedule, i.e. child, adolescent, young adult, etc.
Nancy Reeves. Spiritual Discernment. N.R. - clinical psychologist, psychotherapist, author and poet. “Spiritual discernment is undertaken not just to make good decisions, but to develop a richer relationship with God.” (236)