Attendees at the 'Ordinary' Christians and the Bible workshop

Workshop: ‘Ordinary’ Christians and the Bible

Held at the Old Deanery, Exeter Cathedral

Thursday 11 February 2016, 10.15am – 4.00pm

Recently, in the Hind report and elsewhere, there has been a cross-denominational call for increased biblical knowledge among ‘ordinary’ adult Christian believers (i.e. those untrained in academic theology and biblical scholarship):  the role of the ‘professionals’ in this regard (ministers and academic theologians) is to train the rest to reflect theologically. At the same time, concerns have been raised over a perceived lack of biblical and doctrinal literacy, and a low level of confidence in the ancient texts, among ordinary Christians. This Workshop, funded by St Luke's College Foundation, provided an excellent opportunity to hear about and discuss recent research in this area. Topics covered included what ordinary churchoers actually believe (‘ordinary theology’, presented by Prof. Jeff Astley, Durham University), how they think about and use their scriptures (Prof. Andrew Village, York St John University), how the course Exploring Christianity was received in parishes of this diocese (Rev Dr Tim Gibson of SWMTC) and how various resources designed for training ordinary Christians might be used to maximum effect (Dr Cherryl Hunt, University of Exeter).

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