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Equip Christians to talk about their beliefs, says CoE report

The report was included among the General Synod papers published ahead of February's meeting of Church leaders in London.

The papers say that the Church of England needs to undergo a major "cultural shift" in order to mobilise members to spread the gospel.

The report, "Setting God's People Free", calls for an atmosphere in which lay members can recognise that they are equally equipped "in worth and status, complementary in gifting and vocation, mutually accountable in discipleship, and equal partners in mission" as clergy.

Christians, the document emphasises, should be equipped to live out their faith in their work and personal lives in order to bring others to Christ.

The paper is a key element of the lay leadership strand of Renewal and Reform, an initiative from the Archbishops of Canterbury and York, to help grow the Church.

The first circulation of Synod papers also includes further updates on the process of simplification of Church regulations and safeguarding.

The General Synod will also mark the 500th anniversary of the Reformation which the Church sees as an opportunity to strengthen ties with churches across Europe, work towards ecumenical reconciliation and promote reflection upon keeping Jesus at the centre of faith.

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