Ruth Gledhill reports:
Anglicans were effectively mandated today by the Church of England to go out and convert Muslims and other non-Christian believers.
For decades, their fellow Christians have joked about Anglicans that it is unfair to say they believe in nothing. They believe in anything.
But in a move that led one bishop to condemn in anger the "evangelistic rants", the Church of England yesterday put decades of liberal political correctness behind it.
The overt embrace by the established church of the tenets of evangelistic fervour could jeopardise decades of carefully constructed dialogues with other faiths. For Muslims, to convert to another religion is condemned as apostasy.
The Church’s General Synod meeting in London overwhelmingly backed a motion to force its bishops to report on their "understanding of the uniqueness of Christ in Britain’s multi-faith society" and offer guidance in sharing "the gospel of salvation" with people of other faiths and none.
The move echoes 19th-century missions to Britain’s overseas colonies, with the difference being that modern-day evangelicals want to be mandated to carry out these missions on home turf.