Paul Goodliff was sworn in as General Secretary of Churches Together in England in September, and had a chance to outline his vision for CTE and plans for the future when he addressed the Enabling Group last month. He said
“As we begin a new chapter in CTE’s life, with the implementation of the 2017 Theos report our priority, what will be our vision for the life of CTE, and, indeed, the life of the churches together in England in uncertain — perhaps, perilous — times?
“First and foremost, we must develop our renewed ecumenical identity with greater focus upon our common witness and collaboration in mission. The churches in membership with CTE have identified and called for this, and the challenge of the times demands it. Not that CTE is called to become another mission agency, but rather, an ecumenical space where greater collaboration in mission becomes possible, and even inevitable — a broad tent under which we can gather and share life.
“The growing ecumenical character of the Archbishop of Canterbury’s initiative, Thy Kingdom Come reflects such a move. The broad tent resembles, more accurately, a marquee, with the sides wide open to receive the breeze of God’s Spirit and enable ready access to the world beyond. At its very centre is the Lord Jesus Christ, who is the head of the body, pointing us to the Father through the Spirit, present within and also beyond those gathered under the shelter of the canvas. The very first direction of our gaze must always be the triune God, even as he then calls us to join with him in looking to the whole of creation and the world he creates, sustains and loves…”