Robert Wells, D.Min. deposited A Deep Description of Cross Pressured Christian Identity in the group World Christianity on Humanities Commons 6 years ago
According to Charles Taylor, faith in a secular age is cross-pressured; that is, it is contested by the presence of multiple accounts of belief and unbelief in contemporary Western culture. According to Taylor, these multiple accounts fragilize our own accounts of faith. This fragilization is what nurtures the conditions for believing today and even creates a kind of epistemological crisis whereby we wonder whether our own accounts of faith are true, and whether or not we can have enough confidence in them to live a life of fullness according to them. This project seeks to understand the nature of cross-pressured faith on a phenomenological level and does so by locating cross-pressures in the ways in which the research participants attempt to narrate Christian identity. The research is composed of eight in-depth interviews that have been analyzed, coded and interpreted to produce a deep description of cross-pressured Christian Identity via a phenomenological text. The phenomenological text highlights that a core theological concern is the epistemological crisis initiated by these cross-pressures. In a secular age, one is faced with the question of what it means to know God and what it means to live a life of meaning and fullness in light of this knowing. This project utilizes a covenantal epistemology as a framework for reflecting on this crisis and offering pastoral and missional strategies for ministry practitioners to address them.