The Christianity in Britain is changing and if you look at the census result for 2001 and 2011 you will notice that in 2001 71.7% declared they were Christian and in 2011 just 59.3%. Hardly 1 in 12 people regularly attend church. The church has less influence on society and culture today than at almost any other time in the last millennium. School are also spending less and less time teaching about Christianity and assemblies are become more and more about values rather than God and who he is.
David Hay and Katie Hunt in August 2000 researched, looked at people who were not regular church goers and ask them to share in detail their view about spiritual experiences. Criterions for the research were people who had no contact with the religious institution and yet considered themselves to be either spiritual or religious. They looked to greater detail at 50 people and choose to share information about 3 conversations that they had.
Beyond the Fringe is a report by Revd. Yvonne Richmond’s looking at spiritualty in people outside the church. Here are some of the comments people made about church.
I think there are certain flaws with the established Church in that it is patriarchal and is built on rites and rituals. It has so much dogma that I think the established Church could be tried in a court of justice and found guilty of killing off spiritually. (Female, empty nester).
If you go back to how people use power I think there has been corruption within the Church and through the media it has been well highlighted…I think the top of the Church are corrupt. (Male, young family).
People perceived 6 problems with the church
1 The church was dull and anodyne.
2 people perceived it as being unfriendly to the consumer.
3 People believe that the church was often hypocritical.
4 People felt alienated and nervous was they had attended.
5 People experience of inflexibility ad absolutism had driver them away from the church.
6 Many so the church as unnecessary.
Written by Sarah Hibbard – A Member of Hope Church