I recently attended a retreat with a number of church friends. We spent part of our time together looking at sociological data on religion in America over the last 60 years.
We paid particular attention to mainline denominations, including their declining attendance and size. Over the course of an hour we talked about all sorts of reasons for that decline - political, cultural, sociological.
Not once, however, did we talk about anything the church may have done (or not) to contribute to its decline. To be fair, that question wasn’t put to us, as such. But nothing about the church’s role - in the last 60 years - over the course of 60 minutes?
It was a rather remarkable omission.