The listserve for priests in the Episcopal Diocese of New York recently discussed all the Sunday morning events that now compete with church services for peoples’ attention. The AIDS Walk this Sunday will attract thousands of participants, including some 900 Episcopalians. The MS Bike Tour May 5 involved many others, besides tying up traffic all over New York City. Add other sporting events and birthday parties, brunches, and other social occasions–not to mention weekend getaways and overtime at the office–and church often finds itself second-best.
If I knew what to do about this, I would do it. Sunday evening worship helps a bit, as do church events during the week. But, as far as I know, the church still needs to find new ways to win the attention of modern people distracted by contemporary alternatives to the formal worship of God. –J. Douglas Ousley