A Conversation Waiting to Begin
the Churches and the Gay Controversy
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In "A Conversation Waiting to Begin", Oliver O'Donovan, one of the most respected moral theologians in the UK, evaluates the current debate in the Anglican Communion and asks whether we have actually begun to ask the right questions.
He argues that we need to understand how and to what extent sensibility with regard to homosexuality has emerged in specific historical conditions, and how the conditions may require, as an aspect of the pastoral accommodation that changing historical conditions require, a form of public presence and acknowledgment not hitherto known? These two questions come together as a single question: how are we to understand together the particularity of the age in which we are given to attest God's works?
'In tones of characteristcally elusive profundity, Oliver O'Donovan forces the reader of his new book to realize that contemporary 'gayness' represents an enigma which demands a long period of sustained cultural, ethical and theological reflection before the Church can hope to reach any well-grounded consensus on this issue.' -- John Milbank, University of Nottingham
'Oliver O'Donovan's reflections on the current troubles of the Anglican Church are quite simply of unique significance. He consistently takes us to the questions others are not asking and refuses the ready-made questions and answers that paralyse our thinking about the sexuality debates. Anyone wanting to understand what is most deeply at stake theologically ought to read and meditate on this invaluable book.' -- Rowan Williams, former Archbishop of Canterbury
'Oliver O'Donovan see the current crisis in the Anglican Communion for precisely what it is - an invitation into the heart of the God. Anyone who wearily feels they have heard it all on these issues will come away from the book challenged, deepened and refreshed.' -- Sam Wells, Duke University, Durham, NC
'Amidst Anglicanism's ongoing confrontations on the issue of same-sex relationships, it is rare to hear voices urging a patient and authentic wrestling with Scripture. Thankfully, Oliver O'Donovan's excellent and challenging A Conversation Waiting to Begin is such a voice'. Church of ireland Gazette, August 2009
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