Ephesus E symbolAims & Objects

Aims & Objects

Why Ephesus

The name stems from the tradition that it was at Ephesus that John took the Jewish understanding of the life and ministry, death and resurrection of Jesus, and transposed it into the Greek understanding of the world and ultimate reality.  The result was John's Gospel.

Ephesus in Wellington suggests that in the secular culture which has evolved over the past 200 or so years, a transposition of similar proportions is necessary if the truths at the heart of the Judeo-Christian tradition are to be known and experienced today.

Ephesus has the following emphases:

  • The starting point for all participants is openness in the faith search.  They may or may not have a current association with the Church.
  • It is centred on the Jesus of the gospels.
  • Each person is free to think of God and express that understanding in his or her own way.
  • It takes for granted that we are secular people in a secular culture.
  • It is affirming of people in their spiritual search.
  • It looks for creativity, wholeness, the sense of Godness in people gathered together in faith and the search for faith.
  • Participants are willing to do theology together.
  • It looks for connections between faith and theology and
    - culture
    - Social trends
    - contemporary science
    - spirituality
    - psychological understandings
    - morality
    - ways of knowing (including different forms of prayer, meditation).
  • It will see expressions of faith consistent with the above.

Ephesus is therefore concerned to:

  • Identify the key questions of life and faith in today's world, and work on them together.
  • Provide safe ground for people who have doubts or questions, but find it difficult or inappropriate to express then in the setting of their own parish.
  • Link people across parishes and denominations, and also beyond them.
  • Discover what contemporary theologians and thinkers are saying.
  • Reflect and where possible act on some of the pressing issues in contemporary society.

Ephesus sees itself as rooted in the life of the Churches - a shoot from the stump.

Most participants belong to a local congregation: for them, Ephesus complements parish worship and church activities.

Others have no church connection.

Both groups are comfortable to explore together.

Ephesus is ecumenical, looking beyond denominations and denominationalism.

Ephesus links informally with similar groups in other parts of the country, especially the Sea of Faith Network in New Zealand and St. Andrews trust for the study of Religion and society.

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