Story after story has piled up in the past two years (and, of course, longer). Yet… nothing has resulted in the way of Church response other than suggested “policy changes.”
From further revelations of abuse in the Catholic Church, first in five dioceses in Pennsylvania to the recent admission from the pope that priests and bishops have been sexually abusing nuns, to megachurch issues and pastoral abuse (Willow Creek and Harvest Bible Chapel), to Southern Baptist abuse coverups, to fundamentalist church coverups…
In all of that, not one call from any major denominational or church leader for a day of repentance. Most of these major stories were met with little more than sighs of “sure, what else is new”. Churches have let this all blow over.
When the American Church finally realizes her Babylonian captivity, the incredibly sorrowful realization will be that the Church still won’t blame itself. It will blame liberals, gays, immigrants, other religions, etc. But we won’t turn the gaze to our own abuses and spiritual lethargy for awhile. A long while.
The window of opportunity for renewal is always possible. Yet, it’s actually closed. All that happens going forward now is predictable. And sad.
But… what if
What if this year on Ash Wednesday (March 6) there was an interdenominational call for repentance? Major denominations would actually call for that day to be a day of mourning and repentance and call on every one of their churches to open their doors and have sacred assemblies. They would NOT “repent” for the sins of America. They would repent for the sins of the American Church.
They would call out for the mercy of God on their congregations and NOT “America”.
They would ask for forgiveness for the spiritual lethargy, the nationalism, the abuse, the blindness…
Yeah… that’s not going to happen.
But… what if