I have a good friend called Ian who is a companion in our local Emmaus community. ** His main responsibility is to look after the book section which is a brilliant resource for local book-lovers. Ian is kind enough to keep an eye out for any books he thinks will interest me. Last week, he steered me to ‘The Church Invisible’ by Nick Page. Ian knew it would really interest me.
For starters, it’s a novel set in the future – in 2040 and it looks back, very insightfully at the decline of the church in the UK in the latter part of the twentieth century and these early years of the 21st .There is a multitude of messages for anyone who is a church member or church leader and it’s very easy reading, often with a wry humour. I will be getting copies to send all those I know in church leadership at Christmas for, however good their ministry is, there are aspects of this book that will give a, perhaps, timely jolt. Although set in the UK, it has, I suspect, relevance for anyone in any church – and could lead to some very interesting discussions between a reader and her/his church leader.
So its futurism fits in well with the themes of this blog and it goes on the recommended list at the bottom right of the page. But YOU don’t have to go that far to get the details. They are ‘The Church Invisible,’ Nick Page, Zondervan. ISBN 0-310-25029-3. Its back cover note says ‘…a wonderfully inventive look at the future of the UK church. Engaging, provocative and very, very funny, this book challenges the church to change.’
So, many thanks to Ian and Nick Page – and do seek out a copy if you’re interested in the survival of the church.
** Emmaus Communities offer homeless people a home, work and the chance to rebuild their lives in a supportive environment.