Father, Son and Holy Spirit: do we really need this idea today?

...that they may all be one, just as you, Father, are in me, and I in you, that they also may be in us, so that the world may believe that you have sent me. John 17:21. THE RECENT Colloquium, convened by SEARCH journal, addressed the question ‘what is the Spirit saying to the churches?’ The necessity and indeed the urgency of this topic was emphasised by the keynote speaker, David Hewlett, who had observed, from across the water, the seismic changes convulsing Irish society in recent years.

In the midst of such dynamic cultural shifts it is pertinent to ask what role the Church can now play and what implications this might have for its ministry? At a time of diminishing congregations and the church’s perceived irrelevance for much of society, the colloquium asked if current patterns of ministry are really fit for purpose. This paper will not go over ground already covered during the colloquium, but will attempt to address the deeper theological issues at stake.