Thursday, April 29, 2010
Grounded in the Gospel
Christians worldwide are putting efforts to spread the good news of the gospel. The recently concluded Alpha conference in Kuching reminded me of the work at hand. Alpha is a worldwide phenomenon that was pioneered by Nicky Gumble of Holy Trinity Church, London.
Historically, the Church’s ministry of grounding new believers in basic Christianity is known as catechesis.
Many who are familiar with the Catholic faith will be able to identify with the term catechism. The Catholic Church usually have catechism classes for their members.
In the early days of Christianity, many claimed to be Christians but did not know Christ. In order to reverse this trend, greats like Luther and Calvin restored the office of catechist to the Church – hence, catechism. Interestingly, Reformers like Luther and Calvin influenced the Roman Catholic Church in taking catechism seriously. Roman Catholic undertook catechesis with vigour, but the evangelicals have been left behind in this area.
Where once Roman Catholic learnt from the evangelicals, it now appeared that it is the evangelical Protestants who have much to learn from them.
However, most importantly the good news of the gospel is spread to many non believers regardless of which denomination is taking the lead.