2 a: still in existence, force, or operation*

Screen Shot 2013-05-27 at 7.46.12 AMThe Mother Church is running a campaign to rejuvenate the CS movement called “Church Alive.” Interestingly, there are a number of other religious groups that are also using the theme of “Church Alive.”

The Catholics have a “Church Alive” website, there is a Church Alive YouTube channel, a  TV station and a series published by the Pentecostal movement. Most of the Church Alive propaganda is not affiliated with TMC.

The goal appears to be similar throughout: how to attract new members, and how to keep the members they already have content.

I can not speak to what other churches are doing, nor can I speak eloquently about TMC’s “Church Alive” movement beyond what I have accidentally stumbled across on their website. The format is as follows:

Your questions—your Church community’s answers. Each week, we’ll feature a new question from the Field, with responses from two experienced spiritual thinkers to kick off the discussion. Next, it’s your turn to help bring new insights, ideas, and solutions to light by posting a comment or participating in our discussion forums.

So far they’ve been at this for 85 weeks, just over a year and a half. In addition to the Q&A forum there are summits and workshops, blogs and audio chats, etc. to entice the tech savvy to the CS movement. TMC is cool – you can even follow them on Facebook and Twitter!

So what kind of questions are being asked?

  • Week 65: “How can we encourage more members to actively serve in church?”
  • Week 86: “How can we really forgive and forget when we feel that fellow church members have made poor decisions for our church or treated us poorly?”
  • Week 74: “Several members have suggested, given the situation, that we forgo holding a Christian Science lecture for this year. Can we do this?”

There seem to be a number about Sunday School numbers in decline, how to handle dwindling finances/membership, young people not joining, etc. I can’t say I’m surprised. No offense to TMC, or their faithful flock, but the last time I set foot in a CS church the average age was well over 60, the congregation was small (well under 20), and the children’s room was sparsely occupied (if at all, then it was with grandchildren). There are a few vibrant CS church communities, run by little ladies with copious amounts of time on their hands and the desire to be useful, but by and large, the ones I have attended are on the decline.

I am curious to see how the “experienced spiritual thinkers” handle these questions and may touch on a few of them in the not-too-distant future. For convenience they will be tagged “Church Alive.”



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