Attended a public talk today by Dr Mathew Mathews, a NUS sociology professor on the topic “Christianity and the secular sphere in Asia”.

He started by examining secularization, which he observes, has brought about a decline in power, popularity and prestige of religion, as well as modernization, which has resulted in the public and private sphere becoming increasingly separated. He then went on to touch on the rationale for secularization, the rise and response of conservatism, conservatives and political action, and the cultural cosmopolitan reaction.

What I found most noteworthy was his conclusion on what the church can champion (both for and against), making reference to David H. Lumsdaine’s Evangelical Christianity and Democracy in Asia.

  • contributing to democracy
  • championing causes
  • dialoguing with other faiths
  • providing platforms for democratic leadership
  • helping the poor and marginalized

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