Monday, October 27, 2008

Stay away from the panic button

Most Protestant mainline denominations in the western world are getting anxious of what they would become a few years down the road. The trigger to this is the numbers, the numbers are down, they are experiencing shrinkage, not growth. Their members are gray headed folks that do not spawn new believers, they are in maintenance mode. They want their church to be comfortable, for themselves, but in the process alienates the new generation. So it is sensible to ask, would their synod/denomination still be around? People are starting to panic. Logic says that if the trend continues, the future is grim.

Something like this has always happened in the corporate world. We know the companies that survive a crisis in numbers are always the ones that have enough rope to weather the storm. So if you are small company, your hope is for a big one to buy you. In denominational terms, you ask the question, should you merge with another? Some are of course, thinking now of jumping ship.

Stay away from the panic button. Only in the Western world is Christianity losing its influence and numbers. Think globally. Christianity is growing in Asia, Latin America, Africa. It is dying in the Western world but the Western world is not the Whole World. That is giving too much credit where credit is not due.

3 comments:

Fraser Pearce said...

And even if it were shrinking globally, what of it?

Christ on Good Friday wasn't much of a prospect for life and growth. At least, from a human point of view.

L P Cruz said...

Pr.Pearce,

Correct, so what even if we were shrinking globally.

It is not a matter of who is having the numbers. At the time of Athanasius, the orthodox were the ones in the minority. And just after the resurrection with the Christians being persecuted, you got all the reason not to become one. Yet it flourished.

LPC

steve martin said...

If the Western mainline churches want to continue to "play church", God will let them play church. Churches do that all the time. Will their candlestands be removed?

Western mainline churches are turning this whole thing (Christian faith) into a big law project. It's all about 'your doing'. Digging another well, feeding more hungry, clothing more naked. There's nothing wrong with that stuff...indeed, we ought do it. But they are forgetting their first love. They are not speaking of Jesus as being the Savior (for that is offensive to people). And the last thing they want to do is offend people. They would rather be liked by all, than speak of Jesus and be hated by most.