Friday, June 12, 2015

The Secular Challenge

Fr. Stephen Freeman 6 Comments

Fr. Alexander Schmemann held that secularism was the single greatest challenge of the modern era. I took up this understanding and made it the heart of my book, Everywhere Present: Christianity in a One-Storey Universe. It is at the heart of every serious challenge the Church faces in our time. The news is not so good.

A recent article by Damian Thompson in the British publication, The Spectator, estimates that at the present rate of decline, British Christianity will cease to exist by 2067. The numbers are simply staggering. The most precipitous decline is within the Church of England (Anglican). The culprit, well-noted in the article, is secularization.

Secularism, in the sense that I use it, is a view of the world in which God is optional. God, if He is seen to exist at all, is in no way an inherent part of life. The world is a neutral zone, not good, not bad, not religious in any way. Religion, God, etc., is nothing more than a belief system that some may choose to bring into their lives. As I have written, many Christians quietly, even unconsciously, hold to this view. Awash in the cultural waters, they feel the world to be devoid of God. The world has been “disenchanted.”

Read more at http://blogs.ancientfaith.com/glory2godforallthings/2015/06/12/the-secular-challenge/

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