But What Is the Church For?


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About the Author

Neil Darragh is a pastor and theologian in Aotearoa, New Zealand. His lectures and publications result from his commitment to combining social and pastoral engagement with academic research. Most recently his publishing interests have focused on compiling and editing original research on the interaction between church and society such as But Is It Fair? Faith Communities and Social Justice (2014) and Living in the Planet Earth: Faith Communities and Ecology (2016). Most recently, it is the local Christian community and its mission that has absorbed his attention.


""But What is the Church For? asks a very important and challenging question essential for any follower of Christ today. . . . My hope is that this book will be read, prayed with, reflected on deeply, so that in living the gospel, all will work for the good of one another, our society, our world."" --John Cardinal Dew, Archbishop of Wellington ""This is mission theology at its best--grounded in God's mission, focused not on the church but on its role in working with God for the 'well-being' of all creatures, . . . ecumenically sensitive, honest, and practical at every turn. If you are going to read one book on mission, read this one. . . . It may be the best book you will read this year, and you will be inspired and changed."" --Stephen Bevans, SVD, Catholic Theological Union, emeritus ""But What Is the Church For? is a well-structured and integrated argument for a church that is fundamentally missionary in service to the realm of God. Darragh clearly and convincingly articulates the role of the 'citizen theologian' in the local church who is engaged within contemporary secular, pluralist societies to enhance human well-being and care for the earth."" --Robert Gascoigne, Australian Catholic University, emeritus ""Darragh is convincing in his claim that mission does not happen 'out there' or 'over there.' Mission in today's pluralistic, multireligious, and multicultural Western world is to be place based, and its practitioners . . . are to be actively engaged at the local-church and societal levels to ensure the well-being of all. This will mean the Christian community is at the service of the realm of God."" --Susan Smith, University of Auckland, emerita

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