You know me! I can’t stand cosmetic unity and I am not talking about the foundation that you apply to your face. When it comes to pretending that major differences don’t exist coupled with the avoidence of contentious issues, then I am afraid my time is too precious.
However, when we are agreed on the fundamentals and insularity hinders unity then we do have a problem. What bothers me in our Presbyterian movement is that some will not worship, plan or work together even with those who share similar values. Not only is there no theological basis for this apartheid system but it is both unbiblical and unhelpful.
So you can imagine the delight of Good Friday at Greenwell Street. The preaching by Steve Cave had been excellent and the presence of God at communion memorable. However, what made it all the more fulfilling was the that more than 300 Presbyterians from our local churches not only gathered together but worshipped, prayed and yes celebrating communion together. This was more than a cosmetic exercise in unity but a deeply moving appreciation of ‘why’ we are united. As the church continues to be marginalised it is important that we make every attempt to show Christian solidarity. For the world needs to see that Presbyterians, who share an evangelical ethos, have a deeper bond that unites than trivia that separates them.
It might have been possible for Mary to stumble upon the resurrection but we have had 2000 years to recognise him and the same length of time to sort out our petty differences. It is my prayer that next year we may even have to use the gallery.