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Great Emergence: How Christianity Is Changing And Why Paperback – Illustrated, September 1, 2012
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From the Inside Flap
"Without exaggeration, I say this book is a masterwork, and it will be cited for decades to come as the most pointed articulation of the church and Christianity that is emerging from the compost of Christendom. I don't know which I admire more: Tickle's erudition, her brilliant writing, or her faithfulness."--Tony Jones, national coordinator, Emergent Village; author, The New Christians
As an internationally renowned expert on religion, Phyllis Tickle has incisive perspective on the trends and transformations of our time. Here, she invites us into a conversation as she shares her reflections stemming from not only personal faith but also decades of observation and analysis. The result is a work that meets the challenge of chronicling a pivotal time in the church's history so we might better understand where we have been and what the future holds.
Tickle clearly lays out the gradual steps leading up to this transformation, including the influences and effects of Darwin, Freud, Einstein, the automobile, and technological advances. She then sets her sights on where we're going, leaving us with a vision of an exciting future for the Church.
Includes a study guide by Danielle Shroyer.|Phyllis Tickle (1934-2015) was founding editor of the Religion Department of Publishers Weekly. One of the most respected authorities and popular speakers on religion in America today, she was the author of more than two dozen books, including The Great Emergence and Emergence Christianity.
From the Back Cover
Well, not exactly. But according to internationally renowned religion expert Phyllis Tickle, this is an accurate summary of the Church's massive transitions over time. According to the pattern, we are living in such a time of change right now. Tickle calls it "the Great Emergence"--a time of dizzying upheaval and hopeful promise during which various sectors of today's church swirl into a great confluence at the center.
"Phyllis Tickle offers a creative and provocative overview of multiple social and cultural changes in our era, their relation to previous major paradigm shifts, and their particular impact on North American Christianity. This is an immensely important contribution to the current conversation about new and emerging forms of Christianity in a postmodern environment--and a delight to read!"--The Most Reverend Katharine Jefferts Schori, Presiding Bishop and Primate, The Episcopal Church
"One thing I've learned to appreciate as I've grown older is big theories--and that is what Phyllis gives us. Within a few pages you'll be wondering if she's onto something. If she is, then we're in the eye of a storm."--Scot McKnight, professor of New Testament, Northern Seminary
"Once in a great while, a book comes along and makes things make sense. With understated humility, The Great Emergence unpacks the chaos of contemporary cultural upheaval and the religious consequences of the changes we now face. After reading these pages, neither the church nor the world looks the same."--Diana Butler Bass, author, Christianity for the Rest of Us
- Publisher : Baker Books; Illustrated edition (September 1, 2012)
- Language : English
- Paperback : 220 pages
- ISBN-10 : 080107102X
- ISBN-13 : 978-0801071027
- Item Weight : 8.3 ounces
- Dimensions : 5.5 x 0.56 x 8.5 inches
- Best Sellers Rank: #63,940 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
Top reviews from the United States
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Phyllis Tickle’s The Great Emergence is a broad-strokes description of how the Christian religion has gotten to where it is today and how it is currently going through another historical transformation. Tickle uses sophisticated language and some lite references to roughly survey of the evolution of changing authority behind Christian beliefs, including the authority of the Emperor Constantine to form a Bible and clear doctrines, of monasteries which preserved the Bible and doctrines through the Dark Ages and thus anchored them in culture, of the Eastern Orthodox Patriarch and the Roman Pope, and of the Bible as the “Word of God.” She also goes about briefly showing how Christianity debunks its own authorities about every 500 years (not on a strict schedule, but as cultural conditions change and in unison with cultural changes). She concludes with some very specific formative points of the new Emergent and Emerging Christianity, which is in process, but sadly those points get smothered in a lot of other discussion unless one is paying close attention.
Somewhat wordy, but well worth reading. Tickle’s book helps me to get a handle on the history of church and institutionalized religion and their relationship to several elements of current culture that are changing both church and religion. She also gave me some very specific ideas of some forces that are clearly influencing and forming the Christianity of the next 500 years.
This is a great book for the sincere spiritual seeker coming out of the Christian tradition. www.ChristopherAune.com
Tickle's thinking in terms of where the Great Emergence is headed is supported by many helpful diagrams that become increasingly complex as various factions emerge and shift emphases.
My assessment is that it's a tough read, but will be a worthwhile study to those who are interested in where Christianity has been and where it's going.
Ernest G. Barr
Top reviews from other countries
Phyllis Tickle's thesis is that every 500 years or so something occurs in Church history which effects a change so profound that a new era can be discerned. She refers to events in the 6th century, culminating in Pope Gregory the Great's support and encouragement for Monasticism - arguably Christianity's lifeline through the Dark Ages. The Great Schism of 1054 is the 11th century's defining moment, as the Western Catholic Church separates from the Eastern Orthodox Churches, The 16th century Great Reformation produces the seemingly never-ending variety and diversity of the Protestant traditions, as well as a renewed and reformed Roman Catholicism. And, so our author contends, the early 21st century is witnessing The Great Emergence of new ways of being and doing church. Sometimes referred to as Emerging Church or Emergent Church, these alternatives to the inherited structures of the existing churches and denominations are seen as offering hope for a new kind of church, as well as offering the prospect of a form of renewal and reformation of the inherited structures from which they have come.
The overview of church history was simple without being simplistic, and maintained a hopeful and optimistic outlook throughout. This will not be the only book you will need to read on the subject, but would make a good starting place for many.
Phyllis Tickle was an experienced and respected academic, writer and publisher, and was the founding editor of the religion department of Publishers Weekly. In 2015 she was diagnosed with lung cancer, and died in September 2015.