« This Side of 313 | Main | McLaren the Syncretist? continued... »

March 18, 2006


I often feel deeply saddened (occasionally amused and angry) when I see commentary in which the apparent interest is to malign another brother or sister without any effort to hold a real dialogue or put anything much more than a knee-jerk kind of thinking into these one-sided responses. But it is nothing new, and McLaren and others like him are not necessarily intended victims but the people who happened to get in the way of a comfortable system. Church history is filled with poor saps deemed heretics who later became saints and role models for the subsequent church. They stirred up fear, anxiety, and other negative emotions that are more easily pushed under the carpet than dealt with honestly.

I wish it were possible for these critics to hold authentic dialogue and relationship with those whom they disagree. But in order to do that, they would need to learn not just a number of skills but how to become different kind of people. Tall order. Those of us who can must continue to model this if there is any hope for genuine conversation in the future. And those of us who are not so good at this must dedicate ourselves to learning to become the kind of people who listen with ears and hearts.

The comments to this entry are closed.


Now available for presale

  • Buy on Amazon --
    U2: Rock 'n' Roll to Change the World

    From its beginning in 1976, U2 has consistently interacted with its environment, both influencing and being influenced by the world around. Giving as much attention to social, political and spiritual issues as it does musical creativity, this Irish quartet provides a unique case study in the intersection of artistic expression and cultural engagement.

The One Campaign

    Please join the ONE campaign to end extreme poverty and preventable disease, particularly in Africa.

About Me

Tim Neufeld

  • Full-time professor, part-time pastor, husband, father of two small boys, news writer for @U2 (atu2.com), just trying to find my way in a new world.

© 2006-2016 Timothy D. Neufeld


  • WWW