A few days ago a very interesting article appeared in the Daily Telegraph newspaper about the state of Christianity in the UK. It compared the current decline in church attendance to a similar pattern in the 18th Century and how that situation was reversed in the 19th Century and people started going back to church. You can read the whole article here.
What I found particularly interesting was the final three paragraphs and the challenge that it contained:
"You’ll never bring people to Jesus if you don’t tell people about him. And the Social Attitudes Survey proves that you can’t rely on inherited tradition to bring people into the pews.
Put it this way. Imagine, say, that the Anglican Church was like Tesco. If Tesco stopped advertising, people would stop shopping there. If Tesco constantly banged on about how its own products are old fashioned and in need of updating, people would stop shopping there. If Tesco said that it would be nice if you’d visit once in a while but entirely understood why you don’t, people would stop shopping there. Christians have become their own worst enemy – killing their faith with silence.
Advertise. Speak up. Tell people about your beliefs. At the centre of the faith is the truth that Jesus died and rose from death to herald a new era. The power of the Good News is so great that it cannot fail to win converts. Time to share it."
Although the article majors on the Church of England what it says is true for any kind of church. If we care passionately about the state of Christianity in our country and if we care what kind of church we are going to pass on to our children and grandchildren, we have to take up this challenge. We also have to take responsibility. For me the very simplest way to share our faith is to talk about what it means to us and to invite people to come with us to a church event...very simple, very easy.
Will you do it?