Churches Together in Britain and Ireland will be gathering more than 300 representatives of member churches from all four nations at Swanwick next week for an Assembly: In Search of Holy Ground. The aim is to take an honest look at the way people today think, at the reality of the churches and at how they can build bridges together with Christian integrity. "Churches often fail to find the common ground where our experience of God in Christ can connect with the culture around us," said CTBI general secretary Dr David Goodbourn. "In this Assembly, we shall be in search not just of common ground, but of holy ground - of those spaces and touching places where people encounter the holy, where our gospel and the spiritual quest of people today can engage with one another," he explained. The Assembly will meet at The Hayes Conference Centre at Swanwick in Derbyshire from Tuesday 26 February to Friday 1 March, with preparatory sessions on Monday for newcomers. The last Assembly was held in 1999. There will be time to explore the work of the Churches Together in workshops and lively discussion; there will be major speakers and the life of the Assembly will be firmly grounded in worship. Daily Bible studies will be facilitated by the Bible Society. There will be a mixture of presentations and discussion to teach delegates new skills to successfully bridge-build between Bible, faith and cultures. The main speakers include Dr John Drane, professor of practical theology at the University of Aberdeen; Dr Grace Davie, senior lecturer in sociology at Exeter University; and Dr Mary Grey, professor of pastoral theology at the University of Wales, Lampeter The Rev Canon Joel Edwards, general director of the Evangelical Alliance will give the address during the closing worship.
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