Tag Archive for ‘Church Growth’
Just as the New York Times was front-paging a supposed upsurge in atheism came complementary tidings from the Pew Research Center. It’s not church spats over “gay marriage” or pedophilia that seem to be driving explicit Christians out the door. A complex of concerns causes their switch to another religion or none at all: namely, disgust with perceived churchly hypocrisies, the rejection of teachings perceived as false, failure to meet personal spiritual needs, and so on.
My grandfather has congestive heart failure. I hate to say it, but I probably won’t see him this time next year. “Gramp,” as I’ve called him since I can remember, taught me how to shoot and hunt, taught me how to change the oil, taught me how to drive a truck, taught me how to run a trot line and how to shake a catalpa tree for worms. He helped me buy a hotrod and a Fender strat. His daddy’s gun sits by my bed, and I have paper money from Okinawa that he brought back from the War. For half of my life, we lived in the same house. I named a son (Carl) after him.
Here’s what I can’t figure out: How in the world did Saint Patrick evangelize all of those Druid priests and clan chieftains without a mission statement? After all, history and tradition tell us that he walked around preaching and performed an occasional miracle. But how did he know what his mission was?