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Category Archives: Rowan Williams

Anglicans and Anabaptists

Another interesting comment from Rowan Williams’ recent address focuses on the importance of the Anabaptist/Mennonite churches: One other crucial focus today is, of course, the act of reconciliation with Christians of the Mennonite/Anabaptist tradition.  It is in relation to this tradition that all the ‘historic’ confessional churches have perhaps most to repent, given the commitment […]

Bread for the world

Rowan Williams’ keynote address to the Lutheran World Federation Assembly is available online. Some deeply stirring remarks about prayer, the Lord’s Supper and the nature of the church are to be found there: The Lord’s Supper is bread for the world – not simply in virtue of the sacramental bread that is literally shared and […]

Baptismal identity

Rowan Williams has a great new lecture available online, which, to my mind is remarkably germane to some of our recent discussions about the nature of Christian identity: . . . the identity of the baptized is not first and foremost a matter of some exclusive relationship to God that keeps us safe, as opposed […]

On not kicking out Jesus

Jason Byassee has a great post on Rowan Williams up at the Duke Faith and Leadership blog. It gets at the heart of what a lot of people miss about Williams, his theology, and what it all means in terms of how we understand ecclesial faithfulness. Williams’ theology holds that Jesus interrupts our easy consensuses […]

God bless Rowan Williams

Apparently among fringe right-wing Christian groups Rowan Williams is catching some heat, yet again, this time for his comments in his Easter Sermon. Referencing some recent British political happenings about wearing crosses in public, Williams boldly called Christians away from facile claims to being persecuted victims in the big bad secular world, opting instead to […]

Not easy news

Rowan Williams has a characteristically excellent Easter sermon posted online now. Here’s a snip: The preaching of Peter and Paul and all the witnesses of the Risen Jesus says that two basic things are demanded of us. First: we must acknowledge our own share in what the cross is and represents; we must learn to […]

The church as digestive tract?

In his recent interview, John Milbank at one point comments that the church, contrary to appearances is not “an institution” (or at least it “isn’t primarily”).  Rather, according to Milbank the church is “the continued event of the ingestion of the body of Christ” which “alone mediates the presence of the God-Man.” Now, I’m all […]

Rowan Williams on the body of Christ, ctd.

What I have been proposing is that the empty tomb tradition is, theologically speaking, part of the Church’s resource in resisting the temptation to ‘absorb’ Jesus into itself, and thus part of what its confession of the divinity of Jesus amounts to in spiritual and political practice. Jesus is not the possession of the community […]

Rowan Williams on the body of Christ, ctd.

More from Rowan Williams’ Resurrection: The resurrection faith is bound up with the existence of the community, then; but that does not immediately answer the question of the source of both faith and community. . . . That is to say: there is something prior to the community. . . . [Thus] it is and […]

Rowan Williams on the body of Christ

Rowan Williams’ wonderful book, Resurrection has some very helpful thoughts on the nature of the church as the body of Christ, and, specifically on the relationship between the church and the risen, personal body of Jesus. We have already noted that Jesus as risen is a Jesus who cannot be contained in the limits of […]

Why Sex Doesn’t Matter

“What is baffling and sometimes outrageous to the modern reader is just this assumption that, in certain circumstances, sex can’t matter that much. And I want to suggest that the most important contribution the New Testament can make to our present understanding of sexuality may be precisely in this unwelcome and rather chilling message. We […]

Barth on Heresy

In §2 of Cd I/1 Barth has a number of interesting reflections on the nature of heresy and its relationship to faith: By heresy we understand a form of Christian faith which we cannot deny to be a form of Christian faith from the formal standpoint, i.e., in so far as it, too, relates to […]

All of it can be transformed

“…the resurrection becomes the moment which overthrows an idolatrous view of grace, idolatrous because it sees grace as serving my needs as I define them…Grace deals with us whole: it does not simply console me as a victim, for that would be to leave untouched the reality of my complicity in the hurt and damage […]

Rowan Williams’ Holy Week Lectures

This year for Holy Week, Rowan Williams has delivered a series of lectures entitled “Growing in Prayer: What the Saints tell us about the Spiritual Journey.” Here are links to the mp3 files of these presentations. Definitely worth a listen. Lecture 1: ‘The Early Church’ Lecture 2: ‘Reformers, Catholic & Protestant’ Lecture 3: ‘The Quest […]

Rowan Williams on Barth

From an interview with Rupert Shortt in God’s Advocates: What caught me and still catches me about Barth is that sense of exuberant bloody-mindedness, enlarged upon at huge length, the gusto, the verve of the theology, with all its outrageous misunderstandings of other people and its wonderfully sanctified egotism. Its a great performance, The Church […]

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