I was born an evangelical protestant, and despite my contentions with this tradition, I still find myself broadly situated therein. However I am ambiguously so situated. To my mind protestantism is always the question, the objection, the provisional mode of protest that takes place within the wider presupposition of the givenness of the Catholic church. It is always protestants that must justify their identity as non-Catholics rather than the other way round.
On the basis of this, I have two questions, for myself and other protestants. First, what justification do we have for remaining protestant in light of what the Catholic Church is today? If protestantism is not a stable identity, but a provisional movement of protest within the Catholic church, we cannot assume the perpetual existence of protestantism. We must be open to the possibility of the end of protestantism if we are to be true to the aims of the Reformers themselves. Second, what was the purpose of the Reformation? If it is truly a movement of “reformation”, it must clearly have a limited number of reformational aims, which, when satisfied no longer merits a sundering of communion. So, if the Reformation is not over yet, what remains to be done?