The Revolving Door

Andy Frost

Andy Frost by Rachel Sian on Flickr. Some rights reserved.

Some churches are like revolving doors: they may be good at getting people in, but at the same time, other people are going out. Mission needs to pay attention not only to reaching more people with the Good News of God’s love in Christ, it also needs to ask why people leave the faith. As we shall see in a forthcoming post about Matthew 28, mission is about discipleship – and that is a long term haul, not a one-off decision. One person who has looked into this issue is Andy Frost. His book ‘Losing Faith‘ is worth a read, as is this interview with him and this document he wrote for the Methodist Church.

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3 thoughts on “The Revolving Door

  1. Leaving the faith is more serious than leaving a particular local church. It suggests loss of belief, maybe disillusionment with God or the feeling that faith hadn’t “worked” and prevented the hardships and hurts of life that maybe they were led to believe it would. I believe faith can be restored; a person may have given up on God, but he won’t give up on them.

    People may leave a local church for a number of reasons. One of which might be that they faced such doubts, trials and disappointments and the church was not there for them; supporting, praying, teaching and encouraging them to persevere. This is serious – for the person leaving, but it also reflects badly on the church. The church members may not, themselves, be in a position to offer such support; to offer prayer, or share testimonies or Scriptural encouragement. The question then is, “why not?”

  2. Exactly! Everything is based on relationships. You don’t simply lose people when you are in a relationship with them. I have had believers walk away from the faith while being discipled by me, but that is very far and few between. For the most part, a disciple is as invested in the relationship as I am, and therefore would be hesitant to walk out of the revolving door. Churches must learn how important discipling is and how important relationship building is.

  3. Have now read Andy’s article, which is very good.

    Am wondering if anyone would be brave enough to say, “would you come to church and tell us how you lost your faith” – and how the congregation would respond if they did.

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