Bishop Vincent Long has released an Easter message which calls on the church and its leaders to follow the example of women throughout salvation history and create a future of hope despite the darkness which surrounds us. By embracing a relational model of radical love, mourning with those who have previously experienced exclusion in our Church and celebrating the gifts of both women and men followers of Christ, Bishop Vincent believes we can build a church which embodies the Good News of the gospel and where all experience and encounter the Risen Lord.
Bishop Long’s Easter message, urges us to forge a bold new future, just as the women disciples did throughout salvation history.
At Easter, Bishop Vincent proclaimed we are “emboldened to move from the shadows of crucifixion into the light and life of the Risen Christ”. We are called to live this message daily.
Mary of Magdala, Puah and Shiprah, Ruth, Esther and Mary Mackillop are offered as models for us in this challenge.
Bishop Vincent believes the church must embody the relational paradigm of radical inclusivity, mutuality, compassion, and the powerlessness of Jesus rather than continue a paradigm of triumphalism, elitism, male supremacy, and clerical dominance.
“If the Church is to be faithful to the biblical narrative and responsive to the living presence of God, it must reclaim a discipleship of equals and empower men and women disciples to share their gifts for human flourishing and the growth of the Kingdom.”
The Bishop calls on Christian leaders to mourn with those previously excluded in order to build a church where all can meet and experience the Risen Lord. By going beyond our community, we can encounter and witness to Jesus in our ‘acts of solidarity, communion and service to the common good.’