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The Fate of Communion: The Agony of Anglicanism and the Future of a Global Church [Paperback]

By Ephraim Radner (Author), Philip Turner (Author) & Stanley Hauerwas (Foreword by)
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Item description for The Fate of Communion: The Agony of Anglicanism and the Future of a Global Church by Ephraim Radner, Philip Turner & Stanley Hauerwas...

Overview
Foreword by Stanley Hauerwas Current debates over a host of issues, particularly those relating to homosexuality, have left the 70-million-member Anglican Communion straining to understand what it means to be a communion - and even wondering whether life as a communion is possible. In this timely book two priest-scholars, Ephraim Radner and Philip Turner, examine the future of the concept of "communion" as a viable church structure, tracing its historical development as a self-conscious Anglican third way between Protestant congregationalism and Catholic centralism. In examining this essential issue, Radner and Turner relate the specific challenges of the U.S. Episcopal Church to the unity of the worldwide communion, touching on such divisive subjects as the place of Scripture, liberal theology, and episcopal authority. Their discussion is at once measured and impassioned, erudite and practical. Compelling reading for Episcopalians and those in other traditions who are searching for a truly Christian approach to these thorny topics, The Fate of Communion is a forthright, direct examination of a church in turmoil.

Publishers Description
Current debates over a host of issues, particularly those relating to homosexuality, have left the 70-million-member Anglican Communion straining to understand what it means to be a communion -- and even wondering whether life as a communion is possible. In this timely book two priest-scholars, Ephraim Radner and Philip Turner, examine the future of the concept of "communion" as a viable church structure, tracing its historical development as a self-conscious Anglican third way between Protestant congregationalism and Catholic centralism. In examining this essential issue, Radner and Turner relate the specific challenges of the U.S. Episcopal Church to the unity of the worldwide communion, touching on such divisive subjects as the place of Scripture, liberal theology, and episcopal authority. Their discussion is at once measured and impassioned, erudite and practical. Compelling reading for Episcopalians and those in other traditions who are searching for a truly Christian approach to these thorny topics, The Fate of Communion is a forthright, direct examination of a church in turmoil.

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Item Specifications...


Studio: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company
Pages   306
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 8.94" Width: 6.5" Height: 0.8"
Weight:   0.96 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Feb 1, 2007
Publisher   Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company
Edition  Reprinted  
ISBN  0802863272  
ISBN13  9780802863270  


Availability  89 units.
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More About Ephraim Radner, Philip Turner & Stanley Hauerwas


Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! Ephraim Radner is professor of historical theology at Wycliffe College, University of Toronto, and an ordained Anglican priest with extensive pastoral experience in various contexts. Active in ecumenical affairs, he has written several books on ecclesiology and biblical hermeneutics, including The End of the Church: A Pneumatology of Christian Division in the West, the Brazos Theological Commentary volume on Leviticus, and A Brutal Unity: The Spiritual Politics of the Christian Church.

Ephraim Radner currently resides in the state of Colorado. Ephraim Radner was born in 1956.

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Product Categories

1Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Clergy > Ministry
2Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Protestantism > Anglican
3Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Protestantism > Episcopalian > General
4Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Theology > General


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Books > Church & Ministry > Church Life > Protestant Denominations



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Reviews - What do customers think about The Fate of Communion: The Agony of Anglicanism and the Future of a Global Church?

Not quite bold enough or deep enough  Apr 5, 2007
I write what I believe is the second review on this site about this book. For the past six months I have been focusing on the "issues" in the Episcopal/Anglican church and have learned most of what I know from articles and blog sites. The title of the book and a positive review in a journal prompted me to buy it and read it.

I was not entirely satisfied. One problem is the the situation in Anglicanism perhaps is morphing too rapidly to be captured in a book. What can and should be captured in a book is a long-term trend. It was, I believe, an Anglican Bishop (Stubbs) who said "The roots of the present lie deep in the past." "Deep" is an operative word in the quote. While Radner and Turner give us a good view of the recent past--their analysis of the "prophetic" voice of the Episcopal Clergy is spot on--they do not go deep enough into the past for us to more clearly see the trajectory that church has been on for over a hundred years, and possibly since its inception.

If one's purpose is to understand what is going on, then Radner and Turner simply don't given enough information. Their stated agenda is to propose a way out and forward. Given Radner's recent comments however, it does not appear that the program he outlines has gained much traction.

I am afraid that for a brief moment this book might have been quite useful, but that moment has passed. Now we must resort to quickly aging articles, or to more magisterial works that examine the church's history for a longer period of time.

I'd give the book 3.5 stars if I could. I'm glad I read it, but if I didn't have it so marked up, I would be selling it as a used book right now.
 
Highly Recommended  Mar 17, 2007
This book deserves far more attention that it is getting. The two authors take a discerning look at the current crisis within Episcopal Church and the Anglican Communion from a decidedly conservative stance. The book is divided into four segments. The first looks at the current situation in the Anglican Communion and the Episcopal Church. The second section considers the issue of authority in the Church. The third segment considers what it means to be a Communion. And the final section looks at some of the issues that could well impact the future of the Anglican Communion.

They have written a well reasoned book that manages to avoid much of the rancor that permeates so much of what is written about the current conflicts within the Anglican Communion and the Episcopal Church. They approach this subject from an unabashedly conservative point of view. A point of view that I do not share on the immediately divisive issue of human sexuality. I feel that I came away from this book with a better understanding of some of the issues surrounding the current Anglican crisis. And, I read the entire book without getting so pissed off that I threw it against the wall. Not once!

A few parts of the book stand out in my mind. Fr. Radner's chapter titled "Children of Cain" was particularly interesting. It examines the negative impact of the American cultural aspects of religious pluralism and religious marketplace mentality on the character and structure of the Episcopal Church. Fascinating material! I will let you read it for yourself.

Dr Turner's chapter titled, "ECUSA's God and the Idols of Liberal Protestantism" provides a very succinct (and perhaps too brief) an analysis of what he calls the Episcopal Church's 'working theology'. The reduction of theology to one of radical inclusion does, I think, lead to a de-emphasis on the concepts of atonement, holiness, discipleship, and even evangelism. I agree with him here. Anyone who has read the Episcopal Church's current Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori's recent book titled A Wing and a Prayer will realize that he is 'spot on' in his analysis. Again, well worth reading.

One issue that is alluded to but not fully examined is whether or not the Anglican Communion is simply a voluntary federation of independent national churches or 'something much more'. Both authors argue that the Anglican communion is decidedly 'something much more' although that is hardly a universal (and most likely not even a majority) view within the Episcopal Church. Certainly, the Anglican Communion has been slowly lurching towards communion, but as late as the 1978 Lambeth Conference, a resolution was passed that explicitly stated that the conference was not legislative body and so its resolutions were not binding.
 

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