I WAS interested to read the letter from Pat Moor in the Worthing Herald of April 21.
I do not believe it is inevitable that faith will decline and disappear. People have been foretelling this for centuries and it has not happened yet! In every generation, people of faith have looked again at their beliefs to see how they apply in their situation. Also, recent surveys show that many people (72 per cent of the population according to the 2001 census) believe in the existence of God, although this is not always expressed by church attendance.
It is true that some churches are closing down. With limited numbers of people going into the ordained ministry and small congregations, it makes sense to combine church congregations. Other churches which close are quite often those which hold on to old-fashioned traditions, and fail to show the relevance of Christianity to modern life. Some churches, like the one I attend (Broadwater Parish Church), are thriving.
Our congregation has increased over recent years. We now have a large congregation which includes not only older people, but also younger people, couples with growing families, and many children and young people. Other churches include less formal styles of worship, such as a café-style meeting, which gives people a chance to discuss matters of faith and ask questions about Christianity.
Such churches are drawing in many interested people.
Pat mentions TV programmes proving that faith is unsustainable. Some of these programmes are very biased, and some channels (including the BBC) seem to give more airtime to sceptics and unbelievers (especially if they are scientists) and do not allow Christians the chance to give a proper response to the points raised.
Scientists who believe in the so-called “Big Bang” theory of creation claim that an explosion in space started the process which caused the world to evolve. But what caused the explosion in the first place?
Scientists admit that the odds against such an explosion producing the conditions necessary to support human life are enormous. Many scientists believe it was the hand of God which caused the explosion and started the process of evolution.
Perhaps if Pat were to visit one of the more lively churches in Worthing, she might find herself reconsidering some of her opinions.
Broadwater Parish Church will be open on Friday, April 29, from 4-9pm to support the Royal Wedding Picnic being held on Broadwater Green, so perhaps I will see her then!