Monday, August 07, 2006

The Ever-Seductive Temptation To Fill The Pews By Emptying The Service

Via Rachel at Tinkery Tonk, here's a story about an English churchman trying to coax his fellow agnostics onto his premises for fun & psychobabble. What emptiness! Meanwhile, churches that make demands of their members continue to grow. There are doubtless plenty of good zingers from First Things's archives that could be posted in counterpoint, but here's what I've got ready to hand:

When a church doesn't take itself seriously, neither do its members.[...] When your religion says "whatever" on doctrinal matters, regardsJesus as just another wise teacher, refuses on principle to evangelize and lets you do pretty much what you want, it's a short step to deciding that one of the things you don't want to do is get up on Sunday morning and go to church. [...] So this is the liberal Christianity that was supposed to be the Christianity of the future: disarray, schism, rapidly falling numbers of adherents, a collapse of Christology and national meetings that rival those of the Modern Language Assn. for their potential for cheap laughs. And they keep telling the Catholic Church that it had better get with the liberal program - ordain women, bless gay unions and so forth - or die. Sure.
-- Charlotte Allen, "Liberal Christianity is paying for its sins", Los Angeles Times, July 10, 2006


(Note: I may have blogged the above quote earlier, but I'm too lazy to go back and check. No charge, in any case.)

No comments: