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Cokesbury

Embracing the Wideness

The Shared Convictions of The United Methodist Church
  • By Rev. Kenneth H. Carter JR.
  • Foreword by Bishop William H. Willimon, Stanley Hauerwas
The Shared Convictions of The United Methodist Church
  • By Rev. Kenneth H. Carter JR.
  • Foreword by Bishop William H. Willimon, Stanley Hauerwas
$12.79
($18.99)
$12.79
($18.99)
Product Description
Embracing the Wideness contrasts a generous orthodoxy with the culture wars that seek to drive a wedge between Christians with deep faith convictions. A generous orthodoxy is possible for The United Methodist Church because scripture supports both a confessing movement and a reconciling movement.

In addition to our divergent understandings of holiness in The United Methodist Church, we apparently have two distinct conceptions of church. These two conceptions of church present in American Methodism grew from seeds planted in the earliest practice of British Methodism:

A separatist church, which views holiness as a calling that separates us from the world—“come out from among them and be separated” (2 Corinthians 6:17). Here holiness is a quality that distinguishes Christians from the world.
An activist church, which understands holiness as a movement for change in an unjust world. The boundaries between church and society are blurred, with the “wheat and tares” growing together (Matthew 13) until God’s final judgment.


At times, a denomination is able to hold these two conceptions of church in tension. And at times, as in recent experiences of American Christianity, there is fragmentation and division. The division may finally be the result of clearly articulated values that are not compatible. And the division may also be the result of how leaders do harm to each other.
What great things could be accomplished if we rediscovered orthodoxy in service of the healing, instead of dividing, of our bodies—our churches! Such a generous orthodoxy would help us not to become immersed in the emotional processes that pit people against each other. Such a generous orthodoxy would keep us from becoming stuck in cycles of harmful collusion and escalating conflict. Such a generous orthodoxy would know that the source of our capacity to be healed of our schisms is a miracle beyond our human power or goodness or intelligence.

At times, a denomination is able to remain viable despite divergent understandings of holiness, and the church can accomplish its mission regardless of believers’ differences. Other times, those differences cause fragmentation and division with each side doing harm to the other. In Embracing the Wideness, author Kenneth H. Carter, Jr. discusses two distinct conceptions of church within The United Methodist denomination: a separatist church which views holiness as a calling and an activist church which sees holiness as a movement to change an unjust world. He challenges readers to accept a “generous orthodoxy” to avoid becoming immersed in the emotional processes that pit people against one another and to acknowledge the miraculous source of our capacity to be healed of our schisms.

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  •   eBook ($12.79)
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  • Additional Details
  • Additional Details
    Product Specs
    • SKU: 9781501871566
    • Manufacturer: Abingdon Press
    • ISBN 13: 9781501871566
    • Publication Date: 09/04/2018
    • Format: Paperback
    • Page Count: 152
    • Author: Stanley Hauerwas
    • Author: Rev. Kenneth H. Carter JR.
    • Author: Bishop William H. Willimon
    • Width: 5.50 inches
    • Height: 8.50 inches
    • Length: 8.50 inches
    • Weight: 0.41 pounds
    • SKU: 9781501871573
    • Manufacturer: Abingdon Press
    • ISBN 13: 9781501871573
    • Publication Date: 09/04/2018
    • Format: Electronic Media
    • Author: Rev. Kenneth H. Carter JR.
    • Author: Bishop William H. Willimon
    • Author: Stanley Hauerwas
    • Width: 1.00 inches
    • Height: 1.00 inches
    • Length: 1.00 inches
    • Weight: 0.06 pounds
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    This item is not available for return. Cokesbury uses a variety of methods for ground shipping. At your request, we can also expedite order shipments for an additional charge. Cokesbury partners with UPS for these expedited deliveries.