The Rev. Dr. J.I Packer who is with the Anglican Church in North America (ACNA) is one of the leading evangelical theologians of our time. He was also the chief editor in the production of the English Standard Verson (ESV) of the Bible. The following is extracted from a "Living Church Magazine" article on J.I. Packer by William Murchison, February 7, 2010.
Dr. Packer said at St. Matthew’s Cathedral in Dallas on Jan. 9, 2010 that he yearns for the return of catechesis, “Bible-based, Christ-centered, declarative in style,” at a time when “the Christian value system is virtually disappearing from schools.” “We are drifting back into paganism…”
“Ongoing learning is part of the calling of the Church,” he said. “It has to be taught in all churches at all times…” He called it “ridiculous to think that no more learning of the Faith is necessary after confirmation has taken place.” Recovering the traditional emphasis on careful, lifelong instruction in Christian faith “will be totally uphill all the way,” he said. “We shall be challenging the dominant trends in our culture, and it won’t be easy…”
“Teaching the catechism should be a regular, continuing project for churches,” Dr. Packer said. “Crucial topics include the authorship of Scripture; the reality of God’s being; the holiness of God’s law; the centrality of Jesus Christ; the graciousness of salvation; the power of the Holy Spirit; and the praiseworthiness of God.”
Dr. Packer urged Christians, “Pray for your clergy, stand behind them as they seek to adjust congregational patterns to the need for intensive grounding in the Christian essentials. Every parish priest should be — among other things— a catechist.”