Dwight Zscheile notes that the American cultural landscape has changed. “The church no longer stands in a privileged position of moral authority within American society.” (Page 29, People of the Way.)
Not only do most of us lament that, including me – but we continue on as if it were not so. That we make assumptions that the rest of the culture knows the Episcopal Church and what we are about. They just have to come and find out.
Dwight invites us to consider another, more ancient strategy: to be less institutional and more incarnational. To go out empowered and enlightened by the Jesus’ incarnational, cross-shaped mission. (Page 27.)
The Episcopal Church retains much of its privilege. And as long we have that privilege, “by all means the Episcopal Church should be leveraged for the common good.” (Page 27.)
We are learning how to do this more authentically. It will take time. We will give it time. We are moving from a benefactor paradigm – which involves doing good works and retaining a superior status, to a relational paradigm – where the face of the living Christ is manifested in everyone. Giving the opportunity for everyone to be changed.