Rev John Sylvester was aMethodist minister and teacher. He wrote from a different perspective with this Appeal in the 1990s.
An Appeal to the Methodist Church to be True to its Catholic Tradition
- The starting point for Christian thought today must be an awareness that we live in a post-Christian age.
- Radical theology is not a real answer because of its persistent scepticism.
- Apologetics are a necessary and viable first step towards positive belief.
- A vital theology must be grounded in revelation.
- A vital theology must be Christocentric.
- A vital theology must be catholic.
- Such theology is dependent upon scripture.
- An understanding of the Bible requires a critique of both liberalism and fundamentalism.
- Scripture records and interprets the initiatives and furtherance of God's creative and redeeming purpose.
- In this sense the acts of God are charismatic.
- The Evangel tells of God's charismatic acts of salvation and calls upon men and women to respond.
- The Protestant Reformation rediscovered the charismatic nature of the Evangel and the priority of the Gospel over the Law.
- Methodist Evangelical Doctrines coincide with the Protestant Reformation, but go a step further, emphasising growth in grace and loving service as a natural result.
- There is a Christian activism engendered by Christian faith. It must relate to the secular order and at the same time be a manifestation of the Kingdom of God.
- The Christian perspective sees this finite world as one with God’s cosmic purpose. Because of its faith in God through Christ it anticipates with confidence the consummation of God’s kingdom.