Week 8, Two Models for the Future Church: Basic Ecclesial Communities and Contrast Societies, (Fuellenbach)

November 19, 2007

This article highlighted conversation going on within the Roman Catholic Church about shifting paradigms of church ecclesiology, and reminds me in certain ways of the Emerging church discussion and cell church movement. I find have been strongly drawn to some of the attributes of the Emerging church movement, for example, the emphasis placed (similarly to BECs) on “the urgent need to inculturate the gospel message more deeply into the culture of the local people” (168). On the other hand, I agree with the authors insights regarding the limitations that arise when churches are widely spread into small local communities causing them to lose their strength to influence society, particularly on a political level, when they lack the “visible, well-defined leadership, and clear doctrine” common in institutional churches (173). I appreciated the suggestions made that the institutional model and the Basic Ecclesial Communities model need not viewed as mutually exclusive of one another, but rather complementary. There is much more I could add to my reflections, this was  a great article to read, but I will leave it that for the sake of the word count. : )

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