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another CC church question...progressive

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I believe the terms "progressive" and "liberal" have been used interchangeably for decades. When one label took on a negative connotation, they would change to the other one. It just goes back and forth. That's how it appears to me, anyway, from studying liberalism in society and how it has evolved over time.


As to the question about churchspeak, it appears to me that this is a liberal church who will look to man's reason and societal approval over God's word. Progressives believe in the humanistic principle of "man-centered" as opposed to "God-centered".


Maybe the best thing to do is talk to the pastor and ask about their beliefs and mission statement, then see how it matches up to what the Scripture say. That's the only way to know for sure.

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Progressive, historically, was the term used to differentiate hard-line, more extreme ;iberals from the more mainstream, suburban liverals. It has also become synonymous with "liberal", and began to be used by liberals in CA who thought the liberals in the mainstream were not, well, liberal enough.

This is from Wikipedia, so take it for what it's worth:


Progressive Christianity is the name given to a movement within contemporary Christianity characterized by willingness to question tradition, acceptance of human diversity with a strong emphasis on social justice or care for the poor and the oppressed (see Minority groups) and environmental stewardship of the Earth. Progressive Christians have a deep belief in the centrality of the instruction to "love one another" (John 15:17) within the teaching of Jesus Christ. This leads to a focus on compassion, promoting justice and mercy, tolerance, and working towards solving the societal problems of poverty, discrimination, and environmental issues. They stress Collective Salvation as a requirement toward salvation of society.

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I guess I'm not up on the lingo. What would you think it means if a church calls itself Progressive but Not liberal? They also mention progressive as "open and inclusive love of God." That is "churchspeak" for........?


It sounds like churchspeak for "we're trying to confuse you" to me. "open" and "inclusive" are often words that signal gay-friendliness, but emphasizing "not liberal" wouldn't seem to go along with that. My best guess is that they're trying to appeal to younger people who might be looking for a progressive congregation, but that they're actually conservative. That would be a strange strategy around these parts, but maybe you're somewhere where the term progressive holds wider appeal?

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I think I will call and ask for a coffee talk. I just thought I might be missing something because I was certainly confused....though I do not think it is meant to be confusing. I have been to many,many,many churches at both ends and the middle of the liberal-conservative specturm. Perhaps as the "most conservative of the liberals" and the "most liberal of the conservatives" I am hoping I have found my place :001_smile:

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