The After Christendom series of workshops takes a more personal look at some of the topics in the popular series of books of the same name. Written by authors who bring some of their Anabaptist-influenced perspectives to important contemporary subjects, these publications explore the implications of the demise of Christendom and the challenges facing a church now living on the margins of western society.
The authors share a conviction that as the Christian faith loses coherence within a society that has been definitively shaped by the Christian story, and as the institutions that have been developed to express Christian convictions decline in influence, a new culture emerges. Some call this emerging culture ‘post-Christendom’, some might label it something else. Whatever name it has, it represents that which emerges After Christendom.
The various authors all write from within the Anabaptist tradition and draw on this long-marginalised movement for inspiration and insights. They see the current challenges facing the church not as the loss of a golden age but as opportunities to recover a more biblical and more Christian way of being God’s people in God’s world.
Many people have appreciated the opportunity to engage with and listen to some of these authors during these workshops. See below for previous and future After Christendom events.
Reading the Bible After Christendom
Lloyd Pietersen is Senior Lecturer in New Testament Studies at the University of Gloucestershire. In this workshop Lloyd introduces some of the main themes from his book and unpacks some of the historical factors that influence how we read the Bible today, pointing out what can be seen when choosing to read from the margins instead. You can read a sample chapter of Lloyd’s book here.
Hospitality After Christendom
Andrew Francis is a community theologian, writer and published poet. In this workshop he helps guests to explore how to restore hospitality and community to its necessary place in congregational life. Together participants re-examine Jesus’ intentions, the wider biblical material, and congregational practices of sharing Communion and draw on radical church history to investigate how, despite increasing marginalisation, hospitality and community are essential to the church’s nature, well-being and mission.