Many hands have been wrung, brows furrowed, and laments raised over the church’s uncertain future. In some church such wrestling has been going on in earnest since the 1980s. Other congregations are just now starting to engage the questions as they see their membership grow older, offerings decline, and fewer youth involved. What is the church to do?
Tom Ehrich, writing in The Lutheran magazine, examines this question in an excellent article entitled “Business as Usual is off the Table.” In it, he calls the church to re-examine its ministry, moving from a Sunday morning is everything approach, to a day by day ministry approach that engages people in smaller groups and in new ways.
It’s a good read, so, here’s a link to it.
We need to challenge our people to consider what it means to be a church that exists not only as a gathering for those who are “in” the church, but also – and perhaps even more so – as a church that exists for the sake of those around us. Remember, Jesus didn’t engage in ministry for the sake of his inner circle, but for the sake of the world. He gathered the few so that they would go out and serve in his name.
The photo above, entitled “Time for Change” is by Marsmetn Tallahassee. Its use is in accordance with Creative Commons (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0) license.