Rowan Williams's Theology of Conflict,Unity and Solidarity
The church has known tension between identity and difference since its beginnings, with frequent disagreement and conflict. The primary purpose of this study is to ask how conflict in the church and society may be understood theologically, through a study of Rowan Williams’s response to that question. Williams’s thesis is that conflict and difference are constitutive of human oneness, theologically and historically—especially in the church. Is conflict therefore a necessity in God’s scheme of things?
The second purpose in this project, related to the first, is a critical study of how Rowan Williams envisages unity within the church and in society. Solidarity is examined as category through which to understand the oneness of the church and of all creatures in Williams’s theology. Christians work for solidarity in Christ even as they struggle with differences and conflict.
I took up theological study after retirement from long career as a research librarian. Having completed honours and masters, specializing in systematic theology, I am pleased to be able to work on a research task of great interest to me.
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