Join us for the launch of Church Matters: Essays and Addresses on Ecclesiastic Belonging (Coventry Press) by ACC&C scholar Rev Canon Scott Cowdell.
The book will be launched by Dr Paul Collins, with a welcome from ACC&C Executive Director Professor Anthony Maher and contributions from Hugh Mackay AO and the author. Books will be available for purchase at the launch.
Refreshments to be provided.
This selection of essays and addresses, most of them previously published either in books, journals or online between 1996 and 2021, reflects the theological journey of a distinguished Anglican priest and theologian. Written primarily within the Anglican tradition where he has worked as pastor and teacher, the reflections raise significant issues of concern for churches everywhere.
Informed by sources as varied as Banjo Paterson and Ignatius of Loyola, the essays throughout raise primary questions of how the church matters in contemporary Australian society, where Christianity and church are increasingly at the margins of people’s concerns and where various ways of being church compete for the attention of congregations and their leaders.
This ‘gift of secularisation’, he suggests, is an opportunity for the church to reconsider what is important in its traditions and structures; and asks what may be needed to bring the churches to a fresh understanding of the reasons for their very existence.
Informed, challenging, accessible and encouraging, Church Matters is an important book in these difficult times for the churches in Australia and beyond.
Cowdell writes with the authority of ‘a critical friend’, who for more than twenty-five years as a scholar- priest has wrestled with the church as experienced by many postmodern Australians, provoking it to become more visibly what it actually is: an instrument of God’s just and inclusive reign. – The Rt Revd Dr Richard Treloar, Bishop of Gippsland
Scott Cowdell’s aim is ‘to keep the Church and the Eucharist at the heart of Christian life and imagination’. He does this as a thoroughly well educated, urbane Anglican, open to the good influence of other faith traditions and ever attentive to the many fine fruits of secularisation in contemporary Australia. ... He’s real and he is good company on the page. – Fr Frank Brennan SJ AO, Newman College, The University of Melbourne
Offers a vision of the church ... centred not on individualism but on the living presence of the Spirit in the eucharistic community, leading it more deeply and authentically into worship and mission. – The Revd Canon Professor Dorothy A. Lee, Trinity College Theological School. University of Divinity, Melbourne