Intentional Discipleship in the Anglican Communion

Just finished reading “Intentional Discipleship and Disciple-Making: An Anglican Guide for Christian Life and Formation.” This is required reading for the Anglican Consultative Council members who will be meeting next week in Africa. The editors of the various articles contained in the 117 page volume are The Rev. Canon John Kafwanka and The Rev. Canon Mark Oxbrow. Forward and Preface by The Most Rev. Ng Moon Hing, Primate of the Church of the Province of South East Asia and The Archbishop of Canterbury, respectively. Those names alone will give a hint as to its perspective and content.

The first eight chapters deal with discipleship viewed through the following lenses: Biblical Theology, discipleship in the early church, Roman Catholic theology, discipleship in the Orthodox tradition, Anglican formation, the Five Marks of Mission, healing and discipleship, and the role of the “instruments of the Anglican Communion.”

The final nine chapters deal with case studies from Africa, Asia, Europe, The Americas; children and youth; Bible and sacraments; discipleship resources, mission and development agencies ; and, finally,”making the case for intentional discipleship in the Communion. The content of the volume is quite mixed from my perspective, but probably accurately reflects the varying contexts around the Anglican world.

A fairly balanced critique predictably finds North America and Europe suffering from a kind of “spiritual malaise” and living in a post-Christendom environment but Africa, Asia and the “developing world” also face some criticism for relying on vast numbers alone without following up with adequate Christian formation and training for discipleship. Witness the corruption in some Provinces and the tragedy in Rwanda to see extreme examples of this.

The little book is well worth the read. For surely, regardless of our cultural perspective, all can agree that we need to do a better job of turning “followers” into “disciples” and “disciples” into “apostles.” A focus on resources which emphasize Bible study, sacramental worship, small groups, and mission outside the doors of the church cannot be all bad.

 

 

 

One Response to “Intentional Discipleship in the Anglican Communion”

  1. Scott Elliott Says:

    Here is a link to the document:
    http://www.anglicancommunion.org/media/220191/intentional-discipleship-and-disciple-making-an-anglican-guide-230316-.pdf

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