I listened with considerable sadness to Radio Ulster’s Sunday Morning Service from Portaferry Presbyterian Church.
Listeners were informed at the start of the service that as the congregation – one of the first in Ireland – is now so small that the church building has been given a major makeover to become a centre for arts and heritage bearing the name Portico.
As I listened to the service, I couldn’t help feel that if what was being broadcast was typical, the numerical decline must be due, at least in part, to a departure from ‘the three solas’ which are fundamental to Presbyterianism – Sola Fide, Sola Gratia and Sola Scriptura (ie Salvation through Christ by faith alone and grace alone through scripture alone).
Any dilution of this truth will inevitably result in spiritual and numerical decline.
Ardens Sed Virens, County Londonderry