Missionaries Come Home -- Sightings (Martin Marty)
For the past couple of decades those of us in the Mainline have heard about the growing presence and power of the Southern Baptist Convention, a community of Christians that has long been conservative, but has become increasingly so, expelling moderate and liberal elements. Still they seemed to grow and become influential in conservative politics (a turn around for a faith community that had long shunned political presence). But times have changed. The SBC is facing numerous challenges, including the need to bring missionaries home due to financial problems. There is no need for us to gloat, though the temptation is there. Marty suggests that even as missionaries return home there are signs that the churches in the former mission field will do quite well. This is an interesting read, for all who are interested in the state of the church in the contemporary world. The Mainline once dominated the national scene. Today we are a chastened lot. Could that occur again?