The Bishop of Oxford, Steven Croft, told bishops from 165 countries gathered at the Lambeth Conference that the world will see the ‘greatest changes in science and technology ever seen in human history over the coming decades.
Christians will miss their
calling to play a central role in responding to crises like climate change,
extinction, disease and the “careless use” of new technologies unless they can
speak confidently and courageously about science, bishops have heard.
The Bishop of Oxford, Steven
Croft, told bishops from 165 countries gathered at the Lambeth Conference that
the world will see the ‘greatest changes in science and technology ever seen in
human history over the coming decades. The Lambeth Conference is a gathering of bishops from across the Anglican Communion for prayer and reflection, fellowship and dialogue on church and world affairs.
the theme of ‘God’s Church for God’s World - walking, listening and
witnessing together,’ this year's conference is exploring what it means for the
Anglican Communion to be responsive to the needs of a 21st Century
“These changes will raise
significant questions around justice, about ethics, about employment about what
it means to be human and to build flourishing human communities,” he told the
Conference. He added that the world faces multiple challenges in the coming
decades from climate change, from the careless use of technologies to the
proliferation of Artificial Intelligence, particularly its weaponisation.
“It is absolutely vital that the
Church is able to speak confidently and courageously to these issues otherwise
we will be seen to have nothing to say to a world which is probably going to be
in multiple crises.”
Bishop Steven Croft who was part
of a year-long UK House of Lords select committee enquiry into Artificial
Intelligence was speaking as the Conference heard a ‘Call’ inviting every
Church of the Anglican Communion to recognize within science ‘God-given
resources for the life of faith’ and offer ‘the wisdom of faith to the work of
He said that Churches should make
science and faith a priority with every Church in the Anglican Communion
designating a lead bishop for science. The bishops said the perception of a
rift between science and faith should be laid to rest.
The Call coincides with the launch
of the Anglican Communion Science Commission bringing together scientists,
church leaders and theologians from across the world. The Commission is working
in partnership with the Equipping Christian Leadership in an Age of Science
Bishop Steven, a Co-Chair of the
Commission, was joined at a press briefing by Commission members Dr Emily
Onyango, Assistant Bishop in the Diocese of Bondo in Kenya and Dr Renta
Nishihara, Bishop of Chubu in Japan.
Dr Onyango spoke of her hope that
science and technology can help tackle the impact of the climate crisis and
Dr Nishihara highlighted the Fukushima nuclear disaster of 2011 and
also spoke of his hope of a world free of nuclear weapons, on the anniversary
of the atomic bombing of Hiroshima on August 6 1945