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Christianity may become ’irrelevant’

Church people must lead by example, Filipino Protestant bishop says

Christianity may become ’irrelevant’
Protestant Bishop Marino Inong (right) and leaders of other churches at a service during the global week of prayer for Christian unity
Maurice Malanes, Baguio City

January 28, 2011

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A Filipino Protestant bishop has warned that religion, particularly Christianity, may become irrelevant if Church people fail to live by its tenets. “Religion will lose its relevance if we fail in our mission, which is to reconcile the world with the Lord,” said Bishop Marino Inong of the United Church of Christ in the Philippines. “Let us become agents of healing and reconciliation in the world,” the bishop told a gathering of Christian leaders from Catholic, Protestant, Evangelical and Pentecostal Churches at the end of a global week of prayer for Christian unity in Baguio City. Bishop Inong said the gathering was a “good initial step” toward reconciliation. “As we fold our hands together in prayer, we are actually beginning an uprising against disorder in this world,” he said. He warned however, that Christians should look beyond their own circles to outgrow biases, stereotypes and “holier-than-thou” attitudes and tendencies. “Let us not allow the devil to use our prejudices and biases for his evil designs,” the bishop said. The mission of Christians includes “our reconciliation with Mother Nature and all of God’s creation,” he continued, adding that natural disasters “clearly show our broken relationship with what God created and provided for us.” Other church leaders attending the gathering also stressed ways of uniting Christians. “In these times, the Holy Spirit, that inherent love among us, and prayer can unite us all,” said Father Andres Cosalan, vicar general of Baguio diocese. Father Henry Kiley of the Episcopal (Anglican) Church of the Philippines called for the “sharing of what we have as the early Christians did.”   Related reports Catholics, Protestants pray during unity prayer week Prayer week unites Philippine Christian Churches PL13072.1638
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