Max Dodd is a subscriber who lives in Sydney. Based on work he has done over several years, he is offering free to groups of people and congregational leaders who would like to make worship experiences more personally invigorating and empowering his time and knowledge. He says:
Christianity seems so much in decline with falling numbers in congregations of all mainstream denominations. Too often I fear we are hearing that the problems are insoluble and that we have to accept the situation.
I could not agree less. While I am well aware of the falling numbers and the aging of those found in the pews on Sundays, I feel that we are too willing to see the situation as irreversible.
What we need to do is again to be clear of what it is we are offering. For too long churches have offered first class accommodation in some abstraction (post death) of heaven and have been preoccupied with institutional survival for its own sake. Contemporary people see these issues with astonishment as absurdities of the highest order and pass by on the other side. We are rarely seen for the leadership of the world and earthly effectiveness or for the invigoration of the spiritual experience to which all teachings of all religions (of both East and West) all point.
I am sure that the solution lies in our discovering that the ultimate truth of existence we are offering is an existential experience of the Greater in our daily lives and the empowerment and invigoration that goes with that experience. As one whose Sunday morning involves some time in a coffee club which has had a “service of worship” with which to commence, I am so disappointed that what is offered seems so little to have to do with the challenges of life of Monday and their due management.
I wish to be allowed to present to the members of your congregation a vision of spiritual experience that is of the empowerment and invigoration of which I spoke in the preceding paragraph. Such presentation could take the form of an address to a service or even as a special event. I would indeed be providing a small book of inspiration to spiritual growth that I call Ambitious Transcendence a series of essays I put together in Europe in 2013. I shall be happy to make a copy of it available to you.
I am suggesting all of this not as one who is simply wishing “to stir the pot” but as an older and (dare I suggest?) reasonably intelligent citizen whose life experience has been blessed by the development of spiritual wisdom and its most practical application to the day by day adventures of a complete life.
Please do not be offended by my candour. I am on the same side as you are with the same hopes for the presentation of spiritual wisdom and life-giving encouragement to action.
To examine some of my material go to: Maxwell Dodd
A Gift of Encouragement
Spooner Dodd Consulting Services
Post Office Box 462
EDGECLIFF NEW SOUTH WALES 2027
Telephone: 0410 940 183
I don’t know any more if I have a ‘soul’ or not. What I do know is that my atoms and molecules got together to create me. And that they all have a ‘consciousness’ and will go on to create something else/somebody else.
The most important thing for me now is HOW I TREAT OTHER PEOPLE.
Our small group “Chatting Faith” – meets weekly, sanctioned by the Buderim Uniting Church Council. We would be interested in maintaining links.