UNITY IN DIVERSITY
Religion is a unique force in most contemporary societies. It motivates individuals to do both good and evil. Historically, it has promoted an end to slavery, racial integration, equal political rights for women, and equal rights for various minorities. It has motivated individuals to create massive support services for the poor, the sick, the hurting, and the broken. Conversely, it has been used to justify slavery, racial segregation, and oppression of women, discrimination against and extermination of minorities, genocide, and other horrendous evil.
Religion motivates many to dedicate their lives to help the poor and needy. Amongst those are people such as Ghandi, Schweitzer, and Mother Teresa. It drives others to exterminate as many “heretics” as they can. Consider the mass murders and genocides in Rwanda, Bosnia, East Timor, Indonesia, India, Kosovo, The Middle East, Northern Ireland, Philippines, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Tibet, and the list goes on and on. Religion has the capacity to generate unselfish love in some people, and vicious, raw hatred in others.
There are many outside the confines of organised religion who have the profound conviction that meaningful and creative experiences between peoples can be more compelling than all the ideas, concepts, faiths, fears, ideologies, religions, exclusivity and prejudices that divide them. They believe that such experiences when sustained over a sufficient period of time deepen the common ground of relationship with a sense of unity that can undermine any barrier that separates one person from another.
The AFSP is the central authority in Australia and acts as a
representative and administrative body for member Congregations. The
fellowship is both a Church and an association of Chartered Churches
that accept the basic doctrine of the AFSP - “One God Many Names”.