RESPONSE FROM REV. ROB ANNING, FORMERLY OF THE IPSWICH CIRCUIT
The Salvation Army put their limited resources – both financial and personnel – into their churches according to the following categories:
Planting – identified areas where congregations should be planted.
Progressing – Growing churches with vision, which the Army backs with resources.
Parked – Churches that are just maintaining a tradition; they get just enough resources to tick over.
Pruned – Churches that have been closed.
In which category does your church fall?
RESPONSE FROM JOYCE WELFORD OF WATTON METHODIST CHURCH
Some statements and questions a non-churchgoer might want to say or ask:
- You can teach me what to believe but I have to experience it for myself.
- I can only experience God by seeing him at work (in you … and then in me).
- I will need to ask questions that are difficult.
- Are you willing to listen to them and not skate over the difficult ones?
- I will need to find the answers (with your patience love and guidance) for myself.
- I may not wish to follow a conventional path.
- I may not understand why you value your tradition.
- I will want to know you accept me (and my family) just as we are.
- I may have some very good ideas.
- I may not want to attend church regularly.
- I may not be able to attend church on Sunday.
- I may not have a complex idea of faith but I may have been through some complex experiences and you may be able to learn from me.
- I may not feel comfortable in church – and for all sorts of reasons…hard pews, difficult or old words; I don’t dress, speak or behave like you do.
- Do you want to listen and offer me what I need or do you want to offer me what you think I need?
- If I don’t come to church, how will I meet you?
RESPONSE FROM ELY & NEWMARKET CIRCUIT
This response is available as a PDF download.