Praxis or Talk about Praxis? The Concept of Praxis in Ecclesiology

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Churches are in crisis. The turn to praxis in ecclesiology appears to attend to the current crisis; yet, the appearance might be deceptive. Since post-liberal ecclesiologies – such as John Milbank’s – consider neither quantitative-empirical nor qualitative-empirical accounts of concrete churches, the turn might be assessed as a turn to talk about praxis instead of a turn to praxis. Confronting Milbank’s concept of praxis with the ecclesiology of Ernst Troeltsch (1865–1923), I argue that Troeltsch allows for accounts of concrete churches since he conceptualises the identity of Christianity not as a proposition but as a project. Hence, praxis is the criterion for the evaluation of concepts of identity. Both churches and reflections on churches are to be ‘elasticised’ in order to attend to the current crisis
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)120-136
JournalEcclesial Practices
Issue number1
Early online date14 May 2016
Publication statusPublished - 2016


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