A year ago, in the February issue of The Post-American, we focused upon the charismatic renewal and speculated hopefully about the potential of new relationships developing between some of those who had been active in charismatic movements and some of those involved in the radical evangelical consciousness of the last few years. Many radical Christians who have been acting on their social and political commitments were being led into community and coming to understand the work of the Spirit in building community as foundational to the prophetic impact if the church in the world. Similarly, others in the charismatic renewal had also been drawn into community and were seeing from scripture that the coming of the Spirit will produce an active commitment to social and political justice. Starting from very different places, it seemed that some of those in both movements were being led to many of the same conclusions about the nature and structure of the church and its prophetic and pastoral mission in the world.
The editorial from that February issue projected:
“Should the community of radical Christians at large begin to integrate the strengths of this [charismatic] renewal movement into the renewal of social consciousness among themselves, the new synthesis could cause one of the greatest spiritual explosions in the history of the church.”
We went on to suggest that renewal movements need each other to hear all that the Spirit is saying to the churches. A keener awareness and deeper experience of worship and the work and gifts of the Spirit seemed integrally related to the building of community, ethical and political discernment, and the shape of active involvement in the world.