“I respectfully disagree with you. What isn't progressive about the Social Principals? John Wesley was largely into social justice, grace, and reading the Bible with the quadrilateral (bringing experience and reason is progressive). Open Communion is a beautiful thing because it meets everyone where they are at and brings them to the table. Infant baptisms are more traditional, but there is nothing better than coming together as a congregation and pledging to help that child grow in the way of God.”
Chaplain Kathleen on Mar 25, 2011 at 13:52:12
“My only concern with the Social Gospel is that in these modern times, it seems that the mainline churches choose to emphasize "social" more than "gospel".
It's important to bring a child into the congregation to be raised in the Christian faith; I'd just call it something different. Believer's baptism is the Biblical pattern, but I perform baby blessings/dedications with great enthusiasm because, working in a nursing home, I don't get to do them very often! (And I could never do them in a church building, because that's a role for the pastor, and I'm excluded for gender reasons.)
On the topic of Communion, I hold to a members-only position because in 1 Corinthians 11, Paul sets the order of service for Communion, including severe warnings about receiving the ordinance "unworthily", which in context excludes non-believers and those in a state of flagrant personal sin. As Paul states that taking Communion in these conditions leads to sickness and death, the safest pattern is members-only Communion in a church which practices Biblical church discipline.
However, I work with the sick, aged and dying. I'm looser on the "closed Communion" issue in practice than in theory. I believe in "viaticum" -- bread for the journey to the afterlife -- to make the process of dying more comfortable. But if I led a church, I'd adhere to the 1 Corinthians 11 standard.
But then again, I wouldn't ever pastor a church (being female), so that's a moot point. *wink*”