The Great Emergence: How Christianity Is Changing and Why by Phyllis Tickle
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
The Great Emergence by Phyllis Tickle is a sociological study on the history and possible future of Christianity.
This text is unusual for its inclusion of and respect for both Catholicism and Orthodoxy in its 163 pages of exploration on how Christianity has changed, from just prior to the Reformation until today.
Its basic thesis is that society, and as a result, the church, changes drastically every 500 years, beginning with the rise of Monasticism about 500 years after Christ, with the transition periods being the most disruptive.
She talks about the effect of a myriad number of things on Christianity including such diverse phenomena as Charles Darwin, Alcoholics Anonymous, Rosy the Riveter and Leave it to Beaver.
The book really is a hopeful one all in all, of the survival of Christianity and even leaves us, in the footnotes, with a prophesy by Joachim of Fiore, that divides Christianity into bi-millennial units emphasizing the Father (from the beginning of time to the birth of Christ) , the Son (up to the year 2000), the Holy Spirit (from 2000-4000) and a glorious union of the three from the years 4000-5000 AD.
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