Orthodoxy and Wesleyan Scriptural Understanding and Practice

October 25, 2022 by  
Filed under Events, Featured, Missions, News

“I sit down alone: only God is here; in His presence
I open and read this book to find the way to heaven”
– John Wesley

Our search for the theological and practical connection between Pentecostalism and Eastern Orthodoxy continues with yet another publication by St. Vladimir’s Press titled, Orthodox and Wesleyan Scriptural Understanding and Practice. The book represents an ongoing dialogue between the Orthodox and Wesleyan confessions and it emphasizes how theologians from both sides are attempting to discover commonalities in theology and praxis. To come together, not so much as theologians and thinkers, but as practical doers motivated by the proper interpretation of Scripture. As observed from the title, as well as through the text, these similarities are not necessarily in theological convictions, but in the proceeding Biblical approach toward interpretation of Scripture.

Orthodox and Wesleyan Scriptural Understanding and Practice is a compilation of essays from the Second Consultation on Orthodox and Wesleyan Spirituality under the editorship in 2000 of S.T. Kimbrough, Jr., who contributed the chapter on Charles Wesley’s’ Lyrical Commentary on the Holy Scriptures. I must issue the caution that the book is not an easy read. But it is by no means a book to be easily passed by Pentecostal scholars searching for the Biblical roots of Pentecostalism within the Eastern Orthodoxy.

The book begins with an interesting observation of the exegesis of the Cappadocian Fathers by John A. McGuckin, and continues with an article on the spiritual cognition of my personal favorite, Simeon the New Theologian by Theodore Stylianopoulos. Although the discussion on Gregory the Theologian, Basil of Caesarea and Gregory of Nyssa was thoughtful and presented in an interesting manner, the essay on St. Simeon struck me as well structured, but somewhat shallow.

An interesting approach was taken in Tamara Grdzelidze’s essay where she presented an orthodox perspective of the Wesleyan position on authority of scriptural interpretation. The essay had a very strong exposition in regard to the Wesleyan understanding of the importance of Scripture in Christian living. The latter part, which dealt with the influence of tradition, however was not investigated to its full capacity, which left the text (perhaps on purpose) open to multiple interpretations. Nevertheless, this issue was resolved later in the book by Ted Campbell that dealt with the subject from the Wesleyan perspective.

A central theme throughout the book was the comparison of prayers and song lyrics from both camps. Although I am no musical expert, I must agree with the authors when they say that theology in music has played an important role in both Orthodox and Wesleyan traditions. Music continues to be important in the everyday spiritual experience of the Pentecostal believer. This rather practical approach seemed to be the heart of the discussion where both sides could agree.

Finally, the role of the Holy Spirit is viewed as central for the reading, understanding and practicing of Scripture in both the Orthodox and Wesleyan traditions. For the Pentecostal reader, it may be easy to accept this presumption as similar to the Pentecostal experience, yet the book describes it in terms which will be somewhat foreign to many Pentecostals. Similarities between these interpretations of Scripture may be self-explanatory for the western Pentecostal reader. But due to the ever-present tension between Orthodox and Protestant denominations, those in an Eastern European context may disregard these similarities. But even if the Pentecostal scholar gathers nothing else from this book, they must recognize that the time has come for a formal Orthodox-Pentecostal dialogue, like the one which the World Council of Churches has been trying to put together since 1991.

Departures from Orthodoxy and Ministry Implications

September 30, 2022 by  
Filed under Featured, News

Dony K. Donev, D.Min.: Eastern Pneumotology Lectures

Eastern Orthodoxy can be expressed in one word: theism. The purpose and meaning of life is to become more like God. Deification is pursued by all means of human existence. This quest for divine likeness often includes the typical for the Eastern Church, speculation on the divinity and humanity of Christ, traditions on the doctrine of the Trinity and non-traditional mystical experiences. They appear in the context of both physical and spiritual characteristics in individual and corporate ecclesiastical environment. The role of the Spirit in the process of deification is threefold and involves: creation, re-creation and theism. Eastern Pneumotology follows the graduate process of theism development. The Spirit is involved in the original creation of the world as well as the new-birth experience. His work however, does not end there, but continues throughout the process of personal deification of the believer.

 

Departures from Orthodoxy

And thus, we arrive at the point of departure from Orthodoxy. Similar to Eastern Pneumotology, this departure can be expressed in one word, dualism. A prime example of the dualistic heresy is the Messalian movement. Arising around AD 360 in Edessa, the Messalians are described as polytheistic. They believe that every human creature has a personal demon, and that Satan and the Holy Spirit together can dwell in the individual. The believers receive a share of the divine Spirit and become equal to God in their incapability to sin.[1]  Interesting enough, the Messalians are highly feministic allowing their women to the top of the ecclesiastical hierarchy.

A similar movement arises under the name Paulicians. Due to the mass persecution through which the Paulicians go, the preserved documents about their existence in history are limited. We do know that they appeared in Armenia and the Byzantium Empire. The final trace of Eastern dualism is in on the Balkans, and more particular in Bulgaria under the name Bogomils. 18[2]

Ministry Implications

The next three brief ministerial applications are inspired and drown from the above research on the experiences of the Oriental Orthodox. They are taken in chronological order in its direct context of Pentecostal practices.

  1. Prayer is the constantly present element through which pneumatic and mystical experiences in the East are obtained. For example, Pallamas reports that the gifts of the Spirit are obtained only through intense mental prayer, which is often accompanied with tears. [3] In the same charismatic context Cassian concludes that after a season the gifts will disappear. My personal implication is that this is precisely the season when prayer and have become strange to the church, and when tears have become are sign of weekends rather than a sign of humility in the presence of the Almighty God. Unfortunately, at the end of the twentieth century, this is precisely our general present satiation.
  2. Peace of Heart: Hazzaya gives five practical signs for recognition of the works of the Holy Spirit: (1) love of God burns within the heart of the believer, (2) growth in humility of the soul, (3) kindness to all people, (4) true love and (5) vision of mind. His main tool to recognize demons and demonic visions from God and divine revelations is the peace of heart, which follows the heavenly presence.[4] I am persuaded that today the rule of the peace of heart is still true in the hearing of the voice of God.
  3. Return, reclaim and preservation: The Armenian faith practices focus on preservation of the apostolic doctrines and habits.[5] Symeon the New Theologian also calls for a return to a radical living of the Gospel.[6] In a similar way, the early Church of God claimed to have as a main goal the reclaiming of the power of Pentecost; however, the church today has evolved to a structure that is quite far from this former idea. Furthermore, in this process the church has become too distinguished, replacing the primitivism of the Pentecostal experience with higher education, development programs, sophisticated structures, etc. And while a century ago we were the persecuted and ridiculed, now we are the people who reject and mock churches that carry the Pentecostal primitivism. Through this, we not only deny our historical relationship with them, but also abolish our Pentecostal heritage, which we often like to brag about.

Nevertheless, similar to the early Pentecostal movement, revival will not come to our churches through sophisticated worship liturgies, but rather through a genuine return to the initial Pentecostal experience. At the end of the twentieth century, simply reclaiming the power of Pentecostal is not sufficient. We need to preserve the Pentecostal primitivism in the reality of our present ecclesiastical setting. Only then we will be who we claim that we are.

[1] John of Damascus, De Haeresibus Compendio, 80, PS 3/1:col. clxxvi.

[2] Steven Runciman, The Medieval Manichee: A Study of the Christian Dualistic Heresy (Cambridge University Press, 1974), chapters 2, 4, and 5.

[3] Burgess, 52-53.

[4] Ibid., 173-74.

[5] Ibid., 113.

[6] Ibid., 62.

13 Titles and Resources at Flower Pentecostal Heritage Center

June 30, 2022 by  
Filed under Featured, News, Publication, Research

Author/Creator: Society for Pentecostal Studies–Annual Meeting, 2007 ; Donev, Kathryn.
Author/Creator: Society for Pentecostal Studies–Annual Meeting, 2010 ; Donev, Dony K.
Author/Creator: Donev, Dony K.
Author/Creator: Donev, Dony K.
Author/Creator: Society for Pentecostal Studies–Annual Meeting, 2011 ; Donev, Dony
Author/Creator: Donev, Dony K.
Resource Type: Books

Spiritual Fullness (Fullness in the Spirit) among Early Bulgarian Pentecostals and Today

June 5, 2022 by  
Filed under Featured, Missions, News, Publication, Research

Bulgaria’s early Pentecostals insisted on a spiritual fullness that included: (1) salvation, (2) water baptism and (3) baptism with the Spirit.[1] As a formula of spiritual experience, it satisfied the witness of blood, water and Spirit (1 Jn. 5:8) on earth; but also corresponded with the triune God in heaven (1 Jn. 5:7), from whom the believer’s spiritual experience originated. Many conservative Pentecostals in Bulgaria today still uphold “the fullness” teaching and would not use Bibles that exclude Johannine Comma (1 John 5:7) for these three “bear record in heaven.”[2]

However, even with the already present Trinitarian experience of the believer and the enormous theological Methodist influence, it is astounding that the doctrine of sanctification was not taught as a separate work of grace among Bulgarian Protestants. Even when after Pentecostalism spread in Bulgaria, it was not included in the tri-fold formula for “spiritual fullness” of the believer. During the persecution of the Communist Regime, speaking in tongues during Communion was done as a spiritual confirmation that the person has “fullness in the Spirit” or is not a government agent sent by the police to spy on the rest of the church. Interpretation often followed to confirm the spiritual stand of the believer. Early Bulgarian Pentecostals did not distinguish between the initial evidence and the gift of speaking in tongues. Even communist propaganda author Boncho Assenov, who categorized Pentecostals as a sectarian cult, defined this fullness as fundamental for the sacramental theology of the early charismatic communities in Bulgaria.[3]

[1] Mollov, 209.

[2] Zarev, 28.

[3] Boncho Asenov, Religiite i sektite v Bŭlgariia (Sofia: Partizdat, 1968), 167, 367.

See also:

The Practice of Corporate Holiness within the Communion Service of Bulgarian Pentecostals

Sanctification and Personal Holiness among Early Bulgarian Pentecostals

Water Baptism among early Bulgarian Pentecostals

First Pentecostal Missionaries to Bulgaria (1920)

Pandemic, Green Certificate and War Scares

March 1, 2022 by  
Filed under Events, Featured, News


While most Western Europe is now slowly abandoning the idea of a vaccination Green Certificate for travels, Bulgaria is still firmly using such as a permanent requirement. The improvements from the European Union seem to matter little in our Balkan reality, and our churches here have been forced to deal with this since the Pandemic hit.

As if this is not enough, the war in Ukraine is just too close to ignore. Seems like Bulgaria is now pressed between Ukraine and Macedonia in the European Union, and between Russia and NATO in a more global context and this will continue for the foreseeable future.

We have been praying and fasting in the months past that God’s mercy is upon the people and the ministry. Now, that most of denominational ordeals here seem to have come to a sad end, please continue to remember the people of Bulgaria, our decades long commitment to the work of the Great Commission and the many souls that still need salvation, discipleship and ministry on the Balkans.

PUBLICATIONS and NOTABLE MENTIONS

February 20, 2022 by  
Filed under Featured, News

European Legal Cultures in Transition By Grødeland, Åse B. Miller, William Lockley (p. 522)
European Pentecostalism by William Kay; Anne Dyer. Series: Global Pentecostal and Charismatic Studies (p. 242-43)

Global Temperance and the Balkans: American Missionaries, Swiss Scientists and Bulgarian Socialists, 1870–1940 By Nikolay Kamenov.
Brother Doni[y] Donev always found time to respite from his theological studies in order to instruct me in the factual history of the Protestantism in BULGARIA…

Dave Emmett in his W.F.P. Burton (1886-1971): A Pentecostal Pioneer’s Missional Vision for Congo, 2020 (p. 84 and 315) on Pentecostal Primitivism

Journal of European Baptist Studies: Historiography of Baptists in Russia
Authors: Wardin, Albert of the Baptist Convention’s Historical Library and Archives
“With the help of an American Pentecostal of Bulgarian descent, Dony Donev, and the archives of the Assembly of God in the USA, I have assembled an extensive collection of material on the Voronaev movement.”

Charismatic Reformer, Mystic or Father? The Reception of Symeon the New Theologian by Pentecostal/Charismatic Theologians.
by Lysack, Maxym Faculty of Theology, Saint Paul University
Source: Religions; Jun 2021, Vol. 12 Issue 6, p389

In People of the Spirit : The Assemblies of God By McGee, Gary B.
Ed.: Revised and updated. Springfield, Missouri : Gospel Publishing House. 2014

In Religion and Politics in Post-Socialist Central and Southeastern Europe
Challenges Since 1989 on behalf of the East-West Church and Ministry Report

ALSO Church, State, and Democracy in Expanding Europe
By Lavinia Stan, Lucian Turcescu · 2011-2021

The Politics of Language and Nationalism in Modern Central Europe
By T. Kamusella · 2008

Religion and Politics in Post-Socialist Central and … – Page 284 Sabrina P. Ramet · 2014 ·

im Sinne des bulgarischen Church of God Theologen Dony K. Donev der darin die Bedingung für das (er-)leben ..

Geisterfahrer zwischen Transzendenz und Immanenz – Page 54 Giovanni Maltese · 2013

Church of God Evangel vol. 84 1994

Historical Theology in Brill’s Encyclopedia of Global Pentecostalism
• Voronaev, Ivan Efimovich
• Zaplishny, Dionissy Michailovitch
• Nikolov, Nicholas
• Anna Ladd Bartleman

Recent Biblical Studies for the Pneuma Foundation

• Mission of God Study Bible
• Maxwell Leadership Bible
• Fire Bible
• Spirit Filled Life Bible
• Strange Fire?

Bulgaria in the Tension between NATO, Ukraine and Russia

January 25, 2022 by  
Filed under Events, Featured, Media, News, Publication

Bulgaria‘s strategy in the crisis over Ukraine, adopted at today’s cabinet meeting, will be aimed entirely at the Bulgarian army, and our country will make every effort to resolve the conflict peacefully. This was announced by Prime Minister Kiril Petkov after the government session.

Some of the information during today’s sitting is secret and will not be announced, including to the deputies in the parliament, Kiril Petkov told the ministers. Later, it became clear from his words to the media that Bulgaria will focus all its efforts on resolving the Russia-Ukraine conflict through diplomatic channels. And our defense system will be aimed at developing the potential of the Bulgarian army.

Less than a day was the deadline given by Prime Minister Kiril Petkov to the Minister of Defense Stefan Yanev to prepare a draft of the national position of our country and measures to strengthen the security system in Bulgaria. The project was submitted and approved at today’s meeting.

The Council of Ministers decided to prioritize Bulgaria‘s strategy towards fully de-escalating tensions between NATO and the Russian Federation, as well as to use absolutely all opportunities through diplomatic channels to resolve this conflict. Our defense strategy will be based on the Bulgarian army. That means Bulgarian troops, Bulgarian command and Bulgarian military leadership, said Kiril Petkov, prime minister.

The Prime Minister expressed regret that over the years our army has been underfunded and stressed that we will work actively to cover precisely these deficits by avoiding the purchase of equipment that is not systematically selected. From now on, Bulgaria should not be just a consumer of security. It should be a constructive partner of NATO, said Kiril Petkov.

The Minister of Defense Stefan Yanev announced that together with the diplomatic efforts Bulgaria must develop its defense potential in the direction of preparing a battalion battle group with Bulgarian troops and Bulgarian command”. On BNT he explained the details:

This will happen with a limited contingent, if we talk about what size – the order is not more than one battalion, not more than 1,000 people. A joint exercise is not a task, but a means, a joint exercise is a means to increase training and capacity. The battalion will take part in joint NATO exercises, which have been planned since last year, Yanev said. According to him, the decisions made today will be the Bulgarian position in the framework of the discussed measures in NATO.

Neither the Prime Minister nor the Minister of Defense commented today on the information from the last days about the possible deployment of NATO ground troops and fighters in our country.

Source from Brussels: Bulgaria is Ready to Accept French Soldiers

And the Foreign Minister reminded that since December at all diplomatic forums our country has consistently insisted on the need to find a diplomatic solution to the conflict. These efforts will continue in the future. We hope that the conflict will be resolved diplomatically. However, diplomatic speech must be supported by the necessary evidence that we have the necessary defense capabilities, said Teodora Genchovska – Minister of Foreign Affairs.

 

The National Assembly heard out Kiril Petkov and ministers on Russia-NATO tensions at an extraordinary meeting today

The Prime Minister, the Ministers of Defense, the Ministers of Foreign Affairs, and the heads of the services in connection with the Russia-NATO tension and the Bulgarian position were heard in the parliament.

Bulgaria is not a consumer of security – this was stated by Prime Minister Kiril Petkov before the National Assembly. He added that in the current situation the Bulgarian army will be prioritized with a battalion, which will probably be formed in April-May. There is also a readiness to withdraw Bulgarian diplomats from Ukraine, but there is no such need at the moment.

The Minister of Defense highlighted the deficits in the Bulgarian army. The Foreign Minister pointed out that our country gives precedence to diplomacy.

MPs outlined dialogue as the best mechanism for resolving the crisis. They expressed concern about the state of the Bulgarian army and the possible economic consequences of escalating tensions.

The de-escalation of tensions is a top priority for Bulgaria, Prime Minister Kiril Petkov reaffirmed before parliament.

Bulgarian PM: Bulgaria is a Sovereign State. Russia should De-Escalate

“The escalation is real. We monitor all developments in this conflict on a daily basis. Our strategy for the first time has the idea of ​​not being security consumers, but partners. Over the years, there are clear deficits in equipment in the Bulgarian army. We have different options – to prioritize the Bulgarian army, with Bulgarian troops, with Bulgarian command,” said Kiril Petkov.

The Minister of Defense further developed the idea of ​​prioritizing the Bulgarian army.

“A Bulgarian battalion will be made and everything will be done through national communication channels. This means that this battalion will increase the pace of preparation. We do not envisage escalation. We do not envisage plans to defend national territory. Nor do we envisage plans for another team to go elsewhere, to a different place”, said Stefan Yanev – Minister of Defense.

The Foreign Minister pointed out that our country gives precedence to diplomacy.

“Obviously, Russia is trying to divide allies by dividing them into categories,” said Teodora Genchovska, the foreign minister.

Opposition party GERB expressed concern that our country may behave as a security consumer.

“We will support you if you stop raising dust with phrases such as ‘national interest’. For us, the national interest is to be a strong member of NATO. GERB governments have done a lot for our defense capabilities – we paid for ‘Cougars’ and ‘Spartans’, you will order and pay the next F-16s. If you offer us a meaningful position – we are ready to support you,” said Daniel Mitov of GERB-SDS.

“The only thing to say whether we are a consumer is how we set our priorities. Our priority is the Bulgarian army with Bulgarian troops,” said Kiril Petkov.

The political party Democratic Bulgaria expressed concern over the state of the Bulgarian army.

“The mission of the Bulgarian army is constitutionally set, but we are all aware of the degree of readiness of obsolete equipment and delayed modernization,” said Hristo Ivanov.

The opposition party Movement for Rights and Freedoms outlined the best solution to the problems in this crisis.

“Through discussion, transparency, and everything that leads to military action. What would be the economic consequences?” Mustafa Karadayi said.

“The main risks are in the energy sector,” Kiril Petkov replied.

And the coalition party “There Is Such a People” focused on the possible economic consequences of escalating tensions.

“Is there a scenario for the energy sector?” Victoria Vasileva of TISP asked.

“We have a clear plan and we are in communication with the EU on how this can happen. Bulgarian households and businesses will be able to count on it,” said Kiril Petkov.

The Bulgarian left welcomed the ruling party’s decision to de-escalate tensions.

“The key for Bulgaria is to maintain its position in this hysterical situation. Bulgaria will not engage in hostile and military action,” Christian Vigenin from the Bulgarian Socialist Party said.

The nationalist Vazrazhdane (Revival) party asked the prime minister if he thought Russia posed a threat to Bulgaria‘s national security.

“There is an escalation of hysteria in Bulgaria. Russian troops are just doing standard exercises. This is being used in the domestic political debate. We are not just a consumer of security, we are using security as a maneuvering ground,” party leader Kostadin Kostadinov said.

Russia has launched Military Maneuvers near Ukraine and in Annexed Crimea

Bulgarian PM: Bulgaria’s Sovereignty is Above Everything

“We have no master. No one can say otherwise,” said Kiril Petkov.

East Coast Bible College and Byrd Dorm

January 15, 2022 by  
Filed under Featured, Missions, News

Exclusivism, Pluralism and Inclusiveness

December 10, 2021 by  
Filed under Featured, Missions, News

Exclusivism as most relevant and easiest to detect in a church or a ministry. It seems that marginalized people tend to respond to a Divine authority that either empowers them to address the social evils of society, or to rise above the impoverishment and inequities of their existence through a sense of spiritual realities that supersede the material world. We are regarding this dynamic as clergies often create a separate “clericalism alternative” to genuine Biblical ministry. The laity sometimes separates itself from the church experience. And the congregation is left with the painful experience of continuous and cultural dislocation. There is, however, some steadiness and perseverance through such uncertainty in way of reinventing the church. This new church demands a new theology localized away from the academy to the missionary frontier. It also requires a better sense of community. Nonetheless, the renovation process within the community of believers is an intergenerational mission thus transmitting those forms of community discovered by the present church to the future one.

Pluralism brings the highest recommendation to every Christian who is seeking wholeheartedly the will of God for his/her life. If you want to practice theology in a pluralistic society at this time, however, the evangelical churches must be prepared and ready to resist these unacceptable media attacks that restrict religious freedom and impose pluralistic values to the Body of Christ. The discussion on the Kingdom of God implies partnership with non-Christians which in holiness circles may be viewed as inappropriate. Kingdom values are to replace worldly values to indicate the influence of the Kingdom. Certain guidelines of cooperation then must be drawn in order that any partnership of such kind does not radically change the identity of the church negatively, but rather serves as a positive transformational factor for all participating Christians and non-Christians.

Inclusiveness must note that the climax of Christ’s mission was the cross. His suffering was due to a preexisting conflict which was resolved though His sacrifice, a transformational statement that included justice and restoration. The Church is also called to engage in the struggle for justice and social equilibrium, which is not only its earthly mission, but part of its eschatological hope as well. The sign of social change is then, not so much, the coming city, but the cross outside the gates. The involvement of the individual believer and the church as a corporate body in suffering on behalf of the oppressed is not viewed by God as failure. On the contrary, it is a transformation that changes both the world and the church after the image of Christ. The all-inclusive (available to all who seek) Kingdom of God creates inclusiveness within God’s redemption for the creation. It is His redemptive participation in human history through which all people are challenged to repent and live a life of participating in Kingdom business, while the Kingdom remains an already-not-yet reality. This reality gives a new status to every believer, who is transformed after the image of Christ, in order to participate in His Kingdom. In this sense, the Kingdom is not a personal Kingdom or personal transformation alone, but it is community which God creates for all with the purpose of being inclusive toward all.

The Early Church lacked no diversity. When we turn to Scripture it appears that God Himself has chosen to challenge the homogeneous unit principle.  For example, He chose to send Peter to the home of Cornelius (Acts 10).  Who else could God have sent?  He could have sent an angel.  In fact, we are told that an angel appeared to Cornelius in a vision.  But instead of preaching to Cornelius and giving the Good News, the angel told him to send his servants to Joppa and call on Simon Peter (Acts 10:1-6).  Why did God send Cornelius to a Jew?  I suspect it was as much for the spiritual growth of the Jewish Christian church, as it was for the salvation of these Gentiles. Further, we are told that in a vision Peter rejected God’s instructions to transcend culturally held beliefs and he argued with God.  God did not placate Peter in his protest, but challenged him with these words, “Do not call anything impure that God has made clean” (Acts 10:15, NIV).  God was investing a vision for racial/cultural diversity into Peter, and by extension, the church.  This set the stage for the arrival of the Gentiles seeking Him.  God had a plan for the inclusion of more people than just the Jews.

Trends and Issues Affecting Asian Missions and The Next American Spirituality

September 30, 2021 by  
Filed under Events, Featured, Missions, Publication

“Three Trends and Three Issues Affecting Asian Missions” and the figures given by David Barrett present a Macedonian Call to 3.7 billion people with some 9% Christians, which is no small issue in global missions today. At the same time, America becoming the third largest mission field in the world is the obvious antipode of missionary need in the Western hemisphere. The parallels in post-modernity are many.

About 20 years ago, a book called “The Next American Spirituality” summarized the culture of today’s American spirituality and its relation to the apostolic church. The main question is, “What would a theology of the church look like that took seriously the fact that North America is now itself a mission field?”

To answer the question, Gallup and Jones examined how America does Biblical spirituality, using the gathered data to analyze its shift and direction. According to their survey, the marks of the next American spirituality were going to be (in short):

  1. Bull-market church growth
  2. Self-centered religion of me and thee
  3. Hunger for experience – any experience
  4. Search of roots amid the relativism
  5. Quest for community resulting in self-belongingness and self-realization

In our current context of ministry two decades later, all of the above signs are evident and true. This is due on hand to the constant shift in the cultural paradigm, as well as the obvious shift in the identity and practices of the Christian church in the postmodern context. It almost seems like instead of being the model, the church is following a model, which not only changes the churches identity but interferes with its original evangelistic goal and global mission.

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