I was interviewed by the Moderator of the Presbyterian Church (USA), Rev. Bruce Reyes-Chow, today for his video podcast -- or modcast. We talked about my essay Rebuilding the Presbyterian Establishment. I thought our hour-long conversation was quite substantive, and brought out some concerns that I had (evidently) not addressed clearly enough in print.
The whole discussion can be seen here. I am told that more than 180 people connected live through ustream, and a further group were commenting (which we could not see) through twitter.
Reyes-Chow's main concern was that will still needed official structures to keep the church accountable for overcoming past sins. He did not think that our consciousness of the benefits of diverse voices was strong enough, nor that our leaders, himself included, could keep the church on the right track. This is a point on which reasonable people may reasonably differ. I am conscious of the way that mandates create a backlash, so they should be used sparingly. Likewise, it is dangerous, and ultimately becomes counterproductive, to use false or misplaced categories such as race or sex, whether for inclusion or exclusion.
The ideas in this essay have been growing for some years, in my mind and in conversation with others. If some of them prove helpful in renewing some useful authority in the church, Rebuilding the Presbyterian Establishment will have done its job.