CHURCHGOING is in freefall in Britain because clergy and ministers are failing to stand up for moral values and treasured beliefs, a new survey has found.
Churches are being “silent” and “lukewarm” in the face of moral and social collapse, according to the £20,000, year-long study of 14,000 British churchgoers and those who have left the Church.
**Researchers found “a widespread sense of anger and frustration” at what was happening to churches in the UK and Ireland. The 42-page report is an indictment of modern preaching and worship, illustrating how excessive liberalism and lack of conviction are driving worshippers from the pews.
The report portrays a desire for sermons based on the Bible and traditional teaching, rather than on politics, social affairs or audience-pleasing stunts. **
The report calls for better apologetics, or Christian teaching, and claims that many clergy are unable to mount a convincing argument in defence of Christianity and are not interested in trying. When asked to explain why Christianity might be true, the common response is: “It is just a matter of faith.”
The report says: “This has resulted in a growing number of people being left with the false impression that there are no strong reasons for Christian belief. Ultimately they abandon churchgoing and are mystified that Christianity continues to grow elsewhere in the world.”
The report blames the contemporary practice of teaching the universal nature of God’s love. Because people believe God will continue to love them no matter what they do, they no longer see any need to go to church to confess their sins or seek guidance on how to change their lives. The aim was to explore the reasons why Christianity is in decline in Britain and Ireland but thrives in other parts of the world, including prosperous countries such as the US.