Tuesday, March 06, 2007


As part of the development of the new Ekklesia website (http://www.ekklesia.co.uk/) launched on 1 March 2007, we have put together and revised a values statement which spells out where the think-tank and news briefing is 'coming from', so-to-speak. Here it is...

EKKLESIA is an independent public policy think-tank seeking to examine the role of religion in a creatively critical way. It is rooted in the Christian tradition, but not tied to any one denomination or major church body.

Through its commitment to an honest dialogue about faith and politics, Ekklesia is positive about finding common ground with people of other convictions (religious or otherwise), while simultaneously retaining its own distinctive outlook.

In the media Ekklesia has been variously described as ‘liberal’, ‘evangelical’, ‘catholic’, ‘protestant’, ‘left-wing’, 'traditional', 'progressive', and more. This is perhaps the best illustration that the stance it adopts does not fit conventional categories, trying instead to transform received labels.

Ekklesia’s approach to issues of religion in the public sphere is primarily shaped by a strong theological and political critique of ‘Christendom’ – the historic collusion of institutional churches with state power and vice versa.

Instead, through research, publishing and commentary, Ekklesia seeks to reinvigorate a different understanding of the church as an alternative-generating ‘contrast society’ within the wider civic order: one that is politically active, but not seeking dominance.

The Greek word ekklesia denotes a people's assembly within the public square. It is also a key New Testament term for ‘church’, summoning the followers of Jesus Christ to a fresh form of social existence based on mutuality rather than self-aggrandizement. Continued in full here.

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