Where is the church today? It appears to be a global phenomenon. Church leaders, the world over, seem to be displaying their absolute commitment to remaining as irrelevant as possible, and that, during the darkest period our generation has ever endured.
Sure, we shouldn’t overlook the exceptions. In Australia, over 3,000 church leaders signed the Ezekiel Declaration in opposition to the implementation of vaccine passports, particularly in the church. But, largely speaking, there has been a deafening silence from our mainline denominations and their leadership. And when they do speak up, what message do they have for their weary flock? Stay home, wear a mask, don’t sing, get vaccinated, and whatever you do, don’t forget to rinse and repeat.
Rather than a word of hope, a defence of the oppressed, or a stand for what’s right and true, our spiritual guides have assumed the role of the government’s mouthpiece, mindlessly reiterating to their struggling congregations every minor alteration to the current public health order.
But their silence where it matters has not gone unnoticed. Many folks, both inside and outside of the church, are asking the same questions: Where is the church today? What are they actually doing?
In a recent segment for GBN, author and commentator Mark Steyn noted that over the last two years, there has been a great absence of the church in the life of the nation.
“When Covid showed up, churches throughout Christendom were deemed non-essential,” Steyn said.
“You would think a society in the slough of despond, in and out of lockdown for almost two years, would be a grand opportunity for Christian ministry. Instead, the church meekly accepted their designation as non-essential.
“They stuck laminated notices on the church door saying, ‘Don’t even think of praying here.’ And according to Douglas Murray in The Spectator, [they] actually encouraged the government to close them down.
“In the fullness of times, the garden centres reopened, the pubs reopened, but churches didn’t.”