Hope for the Anglican Communion: The Koinonia of communicative action

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Abstract

This article explores the importance of the New Testament word koinonia as ameans of hope for the Anglican Communion at the present time through the process of communicative action. It suggests that through the gift of koinonia, Anglicans can participate in the life of God and each other in fellowship and sharing, despite differences in tradition and belief. Koinonia is more universal and fundamental for the Anglican Communion than the tensions related to the particularity of presenting issues such as sexual ethics. The polity of the Anglican tradition is discussed in terms of difference of approach where there is a comparison between what can be termed contemplative pragmatism and more confessional approaches. The reflections of the German philosopher, Jürgen Habermas, in relation to communicative action, are explored to suggest a way forward for the Anglican Communion, bringing hope through a commitment to koinonia and the interaction of dialogue, rather than the prosecution of exclusive positions of truth. While it is recognised that Habermas is a secular voice, there is much within his theory of communicative action that can be of benefit to the Anglican Communion and applied in affirming koinonia as a hopeful path for the Anglican Communion. In this sense, Habermas’s voice is notseen as antithetical to Christianity, but as a critical voice which can bring the Anglican Communion hope in a situation of division and tension.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)7-22
Number of pages16
JournalColloquium
Volume52
Issue number2
Early online date2020
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2020

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