Thursday, 16 May 2013

A simple job made complicated.

I was taking a school assembly this morning about Pentecost. We began by recalling the Ascension of Jesus which a colleague had taught the children about last week. I then asked them what job Jesus had left the disciples to do. They responded straight away: 'Go and tell everyone about Jesus'. That was it. Of course doing it is another matter and that's where the Holy Spirit comes in.

A few days ago the Church of England published its attendance statistics for 2011. There has been a mixed response to the figures and the stats have been spun in different ways; viewed by some as encouraging and by others as evidence of continued decline. The British Humanist Association sought to use the figures to bolster their argument for disestablishment.

David Keen has done an excellent job on his blog of analysing the figures in a post entitled Church of England: Not levelling out. David injects some hard headed realism into discussions, challenging some of the complacency that was doing the rounds when the figures were initially presented. He has continued to post related articles on the issue of church growth and strategy including one today about Archbishop Justin Welby's address to the Diocesan Church Growth Strategies Conference. ++Justin's priorities are summarised as:

  • prayer and renewal of the church's spiritual life 
  • reconciliation, within the church and as an agent in the world
  • evangelism
As I read this straightforward summary, I think back to this morning's assembly and the children's summary of the task Jesus has given his followers: 'Go and tell everyone about Jesus'. How have we made it so complicated?

h/t anglican memes for the picture.

1 comment:

Nick said...

Keep it up. Keep blogging. Looking to reading your next post.
msm group