The Archbishop of Armagh Launches ‘Church and Culture’ Lent Course at St Anne’s Cathedral, Belfast
Added on 21/01/2014
The Most Revd Dr Richard Clarke, Archbishop of Armagh, last night (Monday 20th January) launched a new Lent Bible study resource produced by the Biblical Association for the Church of Ireland (BACI) based on the theme of ‘Church and Culture’. The BACI 2014 Lent Bible study resource is a five part series written by the Revd Dr Ron Elsdon and designed to promote thoughtful discussion of Christian attitudes to our surrounding culture.
Speaking at the launch in St Anne’s Cathedral’s hall, Archbishop Clarke remarked on the significance of Richard Niebuhr’s book Christ and Culture, defining culture as ‘those features which characterize a community and society, transmitted generation to generation as well as to newcomers’. The Archbishop suggested that changing a culture is ‘a process, and it is very important to bring Scriptures to bear on this’. In commending the booklet he said ‘We should never use the Bible to denounce or castigate others’ and concluded that ‘we should view all thinking Christians as “Bible Christians”’.
The Archbishop was joined at the launch by the Dean of St Anne’s, The Very Revd John Mann; the Revd Dr Ron Elsdon; the Chairman of BACI, the Revd Dr William Olhausen; and Canon Dr Ginnie Kennerley of BACI who also helped in the creation the resource.
The Revd Dr Ron Elsdon said, ‘This resource for the whole Church grew from diocesan engagement with the theme in Connor Diocese. It is simply a way in to the subject and the resource includes an extensive bibliography. The central question is “How do we actually engage with and understand culture as Christians?”’ The five areas focused on by the studies are: Affirmation and Celebration, Definition and Separation, Understanding and Compassion, Faithfulness and Service and Lifestyle and Proclamation.
The resource is available to buy in St Anne’s Cathedral, Belfast for £2.50 and from the Bible Society shop on Dawson Street, Dublin, or the gift shop at Christ Church Cathedral at a cost of €2.50. Alternatively it can be downloaded for free from BACI’s website www.bibliahibernica.wordpress.com.
Photo at top (L–R): The Very Revd John Mann, Dean of Belfast; the Revd Dr Ron Elsdon (author); The Most Revd Dr Richard Clarke, Archbishop of Armagh; Canon Dr Ginnie Kennerley and the Revd Dr William Olhausen (BACI chair), at the launch of BACI’s 2014 Lent Resource at St Anne’s Cathedral, Belfast, 20 January 2014
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