Friday, December 22, 2006

Why Liberal Christianity is in Decline

As many in the know understand, the more orthodox the Christian and the parish, the greater the life of the community. Thusly creating more vocations, an increase in devotions, larger congregations, and more holiness overall. In contrast to the more liberal the church a drop in Sunday Mass attendance occurs as well as the practicing of our beautiful Catholic faith. An excellent example can be seen in our separated brethren the Episcopalians as they experience heterodoxy and watered down teachings, especially with the defections of the more orthodox (conservative) churches in the Episcopal Virginia diocese:

All those liberal strands of Christianity are paying the price for their devil's bargain with secularism in vastly diminished numbers, as members figure out that when a religion lets them do whatever they want, one of the things they don't want to do is go to church on Sunday. The mainline denominations, which once represented 40% of US Protestants, now represent only 12%: 17 million out of 135 million. To put it bluntly, liberal Christianity is in meltdown. The election of Jefferts Schori, a theological liberal who prayed to a female Jesus at last summer's bishops' convention, together with the bishops' vote not to endorse the bedrock Christian proposition that Jesus is Lord, proved to be the last straw for many Episcopalians who believe that the essence of their Anglican faith isn't "tension" but fidelity to the Bible and the Christian creeds.

In fact, those conservative Northern Virginia churches that split off on Sunday may be few in number, but they represent an island of vibrancy in an otherwise moribund denomination. They are large, prosperous, highly educated congregations in large, prosperous, highly-educated Washington, DC, suburbs: Fairfax, Falls Church, Sterling, Woodbridge. They join four other Northern Virginia churches that have similarly severed their ties with the Episcopal Church, and two more churches are likely to schedule similar votes in January. These 14 churches, together with a 15th that had been expected to announce a vote on Sunday but did not, constitute only 7% of the Episcopal Diocese of Virginia's 197 parishes, but represent 11% of its baptised membership of about 90,000 and 18% of its average Sunday attendance of 32,000. Live people instead of dead people pay for their upkeep. What happened in Virginia is a sign of growing awareness among conservative Christians that they are not - contrary to the way they have been painted by the liberal denominations and their sympathetic friends in the liberal media - a theologically backward, inevitably diminishing minority of dissenters from the enlightened Christian mainstream. ...For years the wealth, historic prestige, and trendy theology of the Episcopal Church have secured it outsize press attention that has obscured its marginal status in worldwide Anglicanism and American Protestantism. The election of Jefferts Schori as presiding bishop and the pomp surrounding her installation at the National Cathedral in Washington seemed designed as displays of liberal triumphalism.

Sadly many of these same types of liberals infect our Catholic faith. Fortunately we have the Holy Spirit guiding the righteous into orthodoxy while the heterodoxical priests and bishops fall into heresy and indignity. For the article click here.


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