What kind of society do we want?
The Evangelical Alliance is encouraging the church to ask key questions about the society we want, and how we communicate it
With fewer than half the UK population part of a religious faith, according to the latest British Social Attitudes survey, the Evangelical Alliance (EA) is calling on the Church to step up with a new vision for all of society.
Instead of worrying about dwindling numbers in the pews, the EA wants to encourage Christians to speak out with hope for the kind of society they want future generations to grow up in.
It has released a new resource What kind of society? (6 September), which 'sets out the difference that love, freedom, justice and truth could make if we took time to learn from our heritage and look to where the life and energy is in the Church today.'
'Evangelicals frequently say they want to change society for the better, so what might that look like?' it states.
'Our goal... is to stimulate the next stage of the conversation, and to equip the church to practically cast a vision and be a voice for the good of all.'
The report shows how Christian virtues of love, freedom, justice and truth can play a pivotal role in giving hope and vision for society.
Following a year of unexpected elections and results, national tragedies and international insecurity, and debate about our future in the light of Brexit, the EA says 'there is great need for such vision and hope.'
Writing in the preface to the resource Dr David Landrum, EA director of advocacy, said, ‘Love provides the glue that holds society together. Freedom provides opportunities. Justice rights wrongs. And truth is a rock we can all build our lives upon.
‘We want to see Christians speak confidently of the goodness that our faith leads to, and give voice to a vision of a society where all flourish and grow, and in which love, freedom, justice and truth are not just noble ideas, but the revolutionary principles our society is built on.’
Churches and Christian organisations are already working to promote love, freedom, justice and truth in many places in our society. The resource profiles some examples ranging from church responses to the Grenfell Tower disaster, to groups which help people break free of addiction and debt, and Christians who organise hustings during vital elections.
The EA says it wants to give Christians increased confidence in speaking publicly about the impact of their faith on all areas of life.
The report is released in the wake of the latest British Social Attitudes Survey, which showed a rise in the number of people describing themselves as having no religious affiliation.
Dr Landrum said, ‘What we're seeing is the death of nominal religion in the UK.
‘For Christians who believe in Jesus and the teachings of the Bible, this is a chance to speak with fresh clarity about what our faith means, and show all of society how it can benefit.’
For more, visit: eauk.org/wkos
Exploring church role in city transformation - A two-day event this autumn will bring together Christians to discuss the future of our towns and cities
Conversation Welcome - resource from the Joint Public Issues Team designed to bring people, with their many different thoughts, hopes and concerns, together and help churches explore the important underlying questions about the sort of society we wish to live in and wish to leave to future generations.