I ran across an interesting article today. In it a Unitarian pastor was interviewed. The title caught my eye because it says, “Local Church Welcomes Atheists, Agnostics, Firm Believers.” there is something cool about this and also something possibly disturbing. I feel like the church should welcome and expect people of all beliefs, especially with the intent to share the good news of Jesus to those who don’t know and are interested. I’ve grown up with friends of all different faiths and found it sad that many of them felt too judged to come to church, especially when they were truly curious. Shouldn’t Church be the place people are most comfortable asking questions about deep and meaningful topics? Yet this particular church goes so far as to accept all as they are… The pastor says they are free to “believe in no god, one God, or many gods.” What? I’m so confused… I don’t even know if I could label that “spiritual,” let alone Christian. I wonder, how healthy is this?
In the article, the pastor says, “The church and the world ought to be on the same page.” I feel like I agree with him, but not in the way he is saying it. I mean, I think the church should be relevant and aware of what is going on around it. It should be light in the darkness. After all, we have the Incarnational example of God. But how similar to the world should we be? Should we really be on the “same page?”
I wish the gap between the pulpit and the people was less expansive, and I think we need to do a better job as bridge-makers. But in this church, where is the bridge going to? Can a vine detached from its root bear good fruit? Or maybe the argument can be made that this church helps people get to a spiritually “closer stage.” That is, This church doesn’t proclaim the full gospel but it brings people closer to it. Does God weep over this church or can we learn from it? Any thoughts, anyone?