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William Storrar

Abstract

The simultaneous launch of the International Journal of Public Theology and its sponsoring Global Network for Public Theology represents a 'kairos' moment of opportunity for theologians and other scholars working in the emerging field of interdisciplinary theological inquiry into contemporary public issues. Such moments happen, this article argues, when a disruptive social experience calls for the response of collaborative theological inquiry into the public issues generated by such disruptions. By telling an autobiographical story of a public theologian and by reflecting on the history of the pioneering Edinburgh University Centre for Theology and Public Issues, the article identifies common factors that have led a growing number of scholars and research centres around the world to identify with the phrase 'public theology'. Such factors include a commitment to the ecclesial and the emancipatory dimensions of doing theology and employing research methods that include the marginalized as agents of social transformation.

William Storrar

Abstract

Since Public Theology for the 21st Century was first published, the world has witnessed the terrorist events of 9/11 and is now experiencing a growing economic crisis. While the contributors to the volume could not have addressed these events specifi cally, the discussions within the book contain valuable analyses of democracy, active citizenship and the notion of social capital that are highly pertinent in the current climate. Public theology must grapple with and adapt to these changed and changing social and political circumstances.

William Storrar

Abstract

This article draws on the sketch of an emerging paradigm of mission provided by David Bosch and adopts the premise that we can see a new public paradigm operating in the field of public theology. A truly public theology operates in the public sphere. Today the public sphere is global, torn and divided. Public theology should help to create a more inclusive public sphere in which the public anger of the silenced and excluded voices of the oppressed and marginalized can be heard and addressed by policymakers and practitioners. Public theologies have the task of bringing that public anger to effective policy resolution, while resisting the privatization of areas of national life that once were scrutinized in the public domain. Public theologians have to identify issues of public concern that have already been removed from public scrutiny, developing civic and political strategies to bring them back into an expanded public sphere.

Edited by Katie Day, Esther McIntosh and William Storrar

Edited by Katie Day, Esther McIntosh and William Storrar

Yours the Power

Faith-based Organizing in the USA

Edited by Katie Day, Esther McIntosh and William Storrar

Despite shifts in the religious landscape in North America--reflected in the significant increase in those with no religious affiliation and emptier pews across the religious spectrum--there has also been a rise in participation in faith-based grassroots organizations. People of faith are increasingly joining broad-based organizing efforts to seek social change in their communities, regions and country.

This unique volume brings together the most current thinking on faith-based organizing from the perspective of theologians, social researchers and practitioners. The current state of faith based organizing is critically presented, as it has evolved from its roots in the mid-twentieth century into a context which raises new questions for its philosophical assumptions, methodology, and very future.

Originally published as issue 4 of Volume 6 (2012) of Brill's International Journal of Public Theology.

Randall Kennedy, Mac McCorkle, R. Bruce Douglass, Katie Day, David Gushee, William Storrar, Don Browning and Jason Byassee