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The church in decline? What to do?

The church in decline? What to do?

If the church is in decline, what should we do?

How Dying Churches Can Turn Things Around

By Barrett Owen in EthicsDaily

We think we’re dying, and we don’t have much more to offer God.” This is the saddest picture I can imagine for the church.

It may help, though, to know this isn’t the first time God’s people have reacted this way. Have you ever read Isaiah?

When these Judeans returned from exile – back to their homeland, back to where they used to worship – and see a city that is but a shadow of what it used to be, they almost drown in despair.

Homes lie in ruins, crops are withered and the temple is reduced to gravel. And the people around to rebuild all of this aren’t even the ones who saw it destroyed. They were born into this mess of a life.

To rebuild a burnt city, wasting energy and time for what appears to be no reason, sparks little to no creativity.

It’s as if you can hear the Judeans’ collective consciousness saying, “We’re dying, and we don’t have much more to offer God.”

We are similar to post-exiled Judeans.

We look at the work it’s going to take to rebuild our mainline churches and we’re met with anguish, difficult times and frustration.

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Peter Pearson

Perhaps we have to take a moment and look at the places where we have made business-as-usual an idol, where we have forced folks to tend to the museum of past glory instead of building a home that people today can live in (which obviously can include elements of the past without making us reenactors of a former glorious age). We have to BE the church that inspires, invites, thrives where people are hurting and hopeful. Only then do we even deserve a chance.

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revsusan

"Helpless anger is a familiar sensation today. We all feel that way at times about government and helplessness seems to be a daily part of life on many levels. Americans who pride themselves on their ability to get things done are bound to feel a deeper sense of frustration in the face of events they cannot control." -- “The Episcopalian” – October 1969.

Susan Russell

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revsusan

"Helpless anger is a familiar sensation today. We all feel that way at times about government and helplessness seems to be a daily part of life on many levels. Americans who pride themselves on their ability to get things done are bound to feel a deeper sense of frustration in the face of events they cannot control." -- “The Episcopalian” – October 1969.

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