Southern Baptists Waning -- Sightings (Martin Marty)
The Southern Baptists recently had their convention. They did deal with the typical social issues that are favored by conservative Christians. Not much change there. But, as Martin Marty notes in this essay for Sightings, there was a bit of lament about decline in baptisms and membership. Now, for those of us in traditions that have been lampooned by SBC leaders for our own declines, we could do a bit of crowing -- or at least welcome them to the party. But, as Marty notes, this provides other signals about the role of religion in America. Whether we like it, even these last bastions of Christendom (something ironic since Baptists were for a long time on the margins of power) are wrestling with changing times. So, as we contemplate this development, perhaps it is a good time to start thinking about what it means to be faithful (and missional) in changing times. It doesn't seem to matter whether we're conservative or liberal or in between -- the times are changing. Take a read, and offer your thoughts.