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Boundaries not barriers. Alternative spirituality and new religious movements (nrms). The Church of England and other faiths. National Policies. Inter faith policy and new religions/new spirituality policy are different at NATIONAL level in the Church of England

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Boundaries not barriers

Alternative spirituality and new religious movements (nrms)



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National Policies

Inter faith policy and new religions/new spirituality policy are different at NATIONAL level in the Church of England

We have formal relationships with other members of the ‘nine’:

Judaism, Islam, Buddhism, Hinduism,

Sikhism, Jainism, Zoroastrianism, Baha'i



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Christianity and other faiths

  • Engagement

  • Advocacy

  • Dialogue

  • Exchange

  • Diplomacy

  • Sharing

  • Debate

  • Friendship, hospitality, mutuality, faith-sharing



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NRM portfolios

The NRM umbrella covers everything else

  • De facto New Religious Groups

  • Personal Development Movements

  • Pagan traditions

  • Alternative spiritualities

  • Alternative spiritual practice

  • Atheistic belief and morality systems

  • Extreme political groups

  • Organisations offering NRM services and ceremonies



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Inter faith: basis of engagement

  • Historic

  • Leadership

  • Conformity

  • Common elements

  • Deeply rewarding, but often difficult

  • Some NRMs show some of these elements, some have none of them



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NRM policy

  • We have NOformal engagement with NRMs, why?

  • 3000+ groups

  • want formal access

  • change fast

  • not accountable

  • difficult to monitor


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What then?

We encourage informal contacts with NRMs

  • Knowing neighbours

  • Getting info

  • Removing suspicion

  • Supporting families

  • Open door

  • Appropriate engagement



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The Good Stuff

In addition to free calendars…

  • Many peaceful and friendly

  • Good, helpful contacts

  • Enable pastoral care

  • Mutual boundaries


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The Bad Stuff

  • Church of Celestial Light

  • Redeemed Christian Church of God

  • Church of the Holy Blood of the Lamb

  • Holy Spirit Church of Love and Fellowship


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The Bad stuff

  • Unnacceptable behaviour

  • Harm

  • Exploitation

  • Hostility

  • Two-faced

  • Contrary to the gospel


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Boundaries not Barriers 1people

What do boundaries do?

  • Protect from harm

  • Protect from exploitation

  • Protect the vulnerable

  • Help leavers


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Boundaries not Barriers 2Christian faith

What do the boundaries do?

  • distinctiveness, integrity and authenticity

  • avoid compatibility issues

  • insist on Christian values

  • set apart from racist and supremacist groups


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The network

  • Every diocese should have an NRM/AS adviser for pastoral support

  • INFORM provides information

  • INFORM provides access to counselling, legal advice etc

  • AR provides specialist advice eg ecclesiastical law


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Policy

  • No formal engagement, only informal contacts

  • No access, advocacy,

  • Listen, encourage, support informal engagement

  • Use INFORM for information

  • No suppression of groups


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Resources

  • Sense Making Faith

    www.spiritualjourneys.org.uk


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We provide

  • Information

  • Guidance

  • Pastoral care

  • Negotiation

  • Support

  • Access to specialist

    ministries (eg deliverance)