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Perth archbishop says Sunday will always be the Lord's Day

Following Anglican moves to reconsider the scheduling of major worship services on a Sunday, Perth Catholic Archbishop Barry Hickey has asserted that Sunday will always be the Lord's Day.

The West Australian on Saturday reported that the Anglicans are considering moving services away from the Sabbath in a bid to boost attendances. The Anglican Church in Australia may follow a lead from the Church of England flowing from a realisation that the Church will attract more worshippers if it schedules services at more convenient times.

A British report found Sunday is no longer a church day but rather a family day, do-it-yourself day or sports day. Church had dropped off the list of priorities as modern families found themselves more pressed for time.

Archbishop Hickey conceded Catholic services were also suffering from declining congregations but said the Church had to become more youth friendly if it wanted numbers to increase.

He told The West Australian that Sunday is the day of the Lord and that would never change.

Archbishp Hickey said that the only exception is for remote locations where priests travel for small services.

Administrator of the Diocese of Perth Bishop David Murray argued that the city's Anglican churches had to minister to people's needs rather than traditional formats if they expected to survive.

"We have to put ourselves out there. We have to sell ourselves more," Bishop Murray said. "Things will be completely different in 25 years and I can imagine a future where there is no such thing as a traditional Sunday church service."

Anglicans consider cancelling Sunday (The West Australian 31/1/04)

Popular churches pack them in (The West Australian)
Report suggests radical rethink of church (Ekklesia 20/1/04)

2 Feb 2004