Transforming Faith Communities argues for a model of being church that combines congregationalism with a constructive approach to church-state relationships. Congregationalism within a vision for a renewed Christendom is commended here as a viable option for Christian mission in the twenty-first-century world. In making this case, two movements are explored--those inspired by sixteenth-century Anabaptism and late twentieth-century Latin American liberation theology. Each movement is held up as a mirror to the other. A continuing vision for the transformation of church and society emerges from this book as a number of contemporary resonances begin to sound. These include an outline of some likely common features in the development of radical religious communities, an examination of some of the factors that create world-affirming Christian faith communities, and many examples of effective and constructive engagement with church and society across the centuries.
Endorsements & Reviews-
"The experiences of the sixteenth-century Anabaptists and the advocates of liberation theology have not been compared in the systematic way evidenced here. The conclusions Bochenski reaches, with twenty-first-century mission in mind, are fresh and challenging. His work is a pleasure to read. It is rigorous in the way it pursues an argument, but at the same time it is thoroughly accessible." --Ian Randall, Senior Research Fellow, International Baptist Theological Seminary
"Bochenski, in a way I count as inspired, brings two significant faith traditions together in this erudite work. In so doing he brings to light--by contrast and comparison--a series of insights of benefit to all who aspire to live faithfully in and as the community of Christ's followers. This book and its contents serve us well." --Nigel G. Wright, Principal, Spurgeon's College
"Bochenski has produced a stimulating work exploring insights from early Anabaptist and Latin American base communities. Though separated by over four centuries of Christian life and development, they exhibit challenging parallels. . . . The points of contact are vital in the search for the continuing reformation of the church." --Keith G. Jones, Rector, International Baptist Theological Seminary
Michael Ian Bochenski Christopher Rowland
Michael Ian Bochenski has had very wide pastoral and academic involvement. He has degrees from both Cambridge (social and political sciences) and Oxford (theology) Universities. He has been a local church pastor, committed to community praxis, for over thirty years. He has led two local homelessness charities, has been the President of the Baptist Union of Great Britain, and for four years was the Rector of the Polish Baptist Seminary in Warsaw, Poland.