TV coverage of the General Assembly has been patchy in recent years, so I was interested to see the programme on BBC2 last night fronted by Sheena Macdonald. It set out to introduce viewers to the idea of polarity in theology. Thus, interviews with two ministers from different backgrounds were used to illustrate something of the divide between evangelicals and liberals in the church. It did not so much enlighten as fudge the issues yet further. However, it succeeded in showing that we are all the one church. Apparently, the idea is to use this theme as a means of understanding some of the debate on the floor of the Assembly. Interesting that it is almost to politicise the mission of the church. And I suppose it is not surprising really, since debates in the Assembly Halls over the last months have been those of the Scottish Parliament with their obvious (or not so obvious) party political roots. There are some who would have us think that there is a distinct party at either end of the religious spectrum – not so, we all have our foibles, and the truth is that there is a tendency to veer towards one view or another according to personal experience or prejudice. All we can really do is to seek to be true to the God who thankfully, has everlasting patience with us.
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