This is a fine article – The Offer You Can’t Refuse (the Secular World)
One thing that comes out of this is that for as long as churches try to ape the secular world (bureaucracy, steering committees, etc.) we know who will win. It’s just the same as when they put on “entertainment” liturgies and compete against modern professional television presenters, performers and choreographers. Churches lack intimate human relationships like in families and groups of friends. Intimacy and relationship are essential for the survival of a religion. This is an idea of which I have been convinced for a very long time.
Of course, religion is about our relationship with God and not only with each other. That being said, human love and friendship are icons of God, without which we cannot relate to God or any impersonal notion of a church. This is why some of the most “successful” churches have been built on expatriate and ethnic communities – that is until the bureaucracy moves in.
All this needs a considerable amount of thought, and we might be able to emphasise the positive advantage of small Churches in which people know each other over large ecclesiastical bureaucracies and impersonal structures. Yes, food for thought…