A theological tool kit for the city
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A Theological Tool-kit for the City. Bits of the kit. Marking time: kairos meets chronos Gospel themes Mission modes (Re)sources for an urban theology. Marking Time: waves of urban theology. 1. Intellectual: Secular optimism. Cox: The Secular City (1965)

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Bits of the kit

  • Marking time: kairos meets chronos

  • Gospel themes

  • Mission modes

  • (Re)sources for an urban theology


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Marking Time: waves of urban theology


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1. Intellectual: Secular optimism

  • Cox: The Secular City (1965)

    • Secularization and urbanization as liberation from tradition

    • Urban expression of theologies for social change

    • City as cultural icon – not lived reality


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2. Socio-political: Poverty & Partners

  • Faith in the City (1985)

    • Urban reality: UPAs, riots & poverty

    • Urban advocacy: a ‘marxist plot’ ?!

    • Theology of compassion: ‘remember the poor’

  • Regeneration: Partnerships & programmes Church Urban Fund; MAP; UTU;

  • Focus on inner-city & urban estates

  • Church as faithful urban remnant


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3. Global: contested space

  • Faithful Cities (2006):

    • Religious & cultural diversity

    • Poverty & prosperity

    • Globalization: gift and threat

  • What makes a good city ?

    • Holistic urban vision

    • From exclusion to participation

    • Social cohesion

  • Faithful capital: religion back on the agenda


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Kairos meets Chronos ?

  • Distinctive periods – but overlapping waves

  • Deprivation alongside diversity

  • Religious confidence alongside secularism

  • Contested space…conflicting voices


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Theme(s)

  • 1. Homelessness

    • Poverty and exclusion (security)

    • Exile and dislocation (belonging)

    • Community and disconnection (relating)

    • Post-modernism and displacement (engaging)

    • Ecology and alienation (earthkeeping)


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Mission modes

1. Pastoral – service delivery

2. Priestly – sacramental presence

3. Prophetic – public square

4. Parabolic – intentional community


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Theological (re)sources

  • 1. Biblical

    • City in Biblical Perspective (Rogerson/Vincent)

    • First Urban Christian (Meeks)

    • Mandate to Difference (Brueggeman)

    • Liberating Paul (Elliott)

    • Transforming Power (Linthicum)

    • The Word on the Street (Saunders/Campbell)


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2. Theological

- Urban Christianity & Global Order (Davey)

- What Makes a Good City ? (Graham/Lowe)

- The Home we Build Together (Sacks)

- Is God Colour-Blind ? (Reddie)

- Doing Theology in Altab Ali Park (Leech)

- Spirituality in the City (ed Walker)

- Worship in Context (Burns)

- Voices from the Borderland (Shannahan)