Monday 30 March 2020

Catch 22 for Churches

If people are left bereft by the closure of churches, withdrawal of sacraments, withdrawal of fellowship etc. etc. - they will feel themselves to have been spiritually betrayed; and will never again trust their Church.

But if people adjust-to the coercively-imposed unilateral-withdrawal of their Church; and manage their spiritual lives satisfactorily, well, or better than when they attended Church - these people will realise that they do not need the Church.

It is Catch 22.

Either way - Churches are finished. By which I mean that, even if they survive in some form as institutional structures; for serious Christians, Church will never again be the origin and focus of their Christian life.


Mike A. said...

Or, you have someone like me, who is managing quite well from the confines of my own home in administering the sacraments of my faith to my family. Yet, with every week that passes, I find myself missing more and more the sociality and friendships from my local congregation.

I miss singing the hymns as a group. I miss the sound of the organ. I miss greeting my friends, and listening to their sermons. Could I be guilty of taking all of that for granted?

I am profoundly grateful that I am able to receive the essential ordinance of the sacrament of my church each week, regardless of current world events. It is truly a blessing, and I have an increased appreciation for the Priesthood that I possess.

However, I cannot wait for the day to be reunited with my friends again to raise our voices jointly in worship of Christ. I now have a new appreciatIon for joining the "fold of God, and to be called his people, and [to be] willing to bear one another's burdens...and mourn with those that mourn." (Mosiah 18:8-9).

I will never take it for granted again.

Bruce Charlton said...

Watch this on closure of churches and suspension of holy communion from 11:30 - - that's it.

ajb said...

This is especially true for the Catholic church.

ajb said...

I have similar feelings.

Either the Eucharist really is as important as they say, in which case extraordinary measures should be made to continue the Mass. (You can do it in Church parking lots with everyone in their cars, and distribute the Eucharist carefully.) Or, it's not - in which case, the Church looks less important than it claims.

But simply indefinitely shuttering Masses only leaves the latter option in terms of what the Church actually believes.

Bruce Charlton said...

@ajb - Agreed. But it applies to all churches in varying degrees. They have committed suicide - for whatever motivation.

There seems to be near zero recognition that this is - here and now, done and dusted - By Far the single greatest catastrophe in the entire history of Christianity; and it was self-inflicted, and indeed done with moralizing zeal from the leadership.