April 24, 2020

What a Changed World Makes Possible

If you're not an Episcopalian, this may not be of interest to you but because I am, here's what I'm thinking about this morning. If there is anything here that is unclear to the uninitiated, I'd be happy to have a sidebar conversation with you. Just message me.

The Episcopal Church experienced massive shifts in it's priorities and practices post-World War II. This was not necessarily from it's governing bodies. Rather, it was at least in part due to what economic growth in the U.S. made possible. A tradition that had not previously normalized having a priest in every congregation or celebrating the Eucharist every week moved towards both. Along with this came a further centering of local power and authority in the paid professionals among other shifts.

In other words, if you could time travel and drop your average pre-World War II Episcopalian into a post-World War II Episcopal Church they might have been a surprised by what they experienced. Even in a denomination understood by outsiders and insiders alike as "traditional" dramatic changes do happen (and have).

It is additionally worth pointing out that 1979 Book of Common Prayer would not have happened if it were not for the changes that occurred in local congregations post-World War II. Certainly, there is much more than the post-World War II realities in the U.S. that resulted in the changes within the new prayer book but it cannot be denied that 30+ year evolution in practice did not prepare a tradition for this.

There are things happening right now that will change us. Permanently. There will be a pre-coronavirus and post-coronavirus world in the history books. What are those changes?

Some of those changes are going to make new things possible. What are those possibilities? The world has changed. Let us begin to move into what this changed world makes possible.

No comments :

Post a Comment