There has been so much to consume our attention in recent times. Endless news cycles of drama and tragedy have left many weary, while the collective resumption of life post-COVID continues to reveal chasms in society. We have seen the gap between rich and poor continue to widen, and the disproportionate impacts on those already vulnerable to unemployment, to domestic violence and many other disadvantages.
Across Australian churches, we have also seen a divide emerge between those who are looking only at church-maintenance post-COVID, and those who are determined to focus on mission.
In 2021 we partnered with McCrindle research to find answers to where Australians would go when they have questions about faith, beliefs and spirituality. The poll found that Australians are most likely to go to friends and family (52%) or online (48%). The study, which surveyed 1,000 Australian adults, found that as well as approaching family and friends for answers, online communities (18%) and online content such as videos, talks and sermons (30%) were a key source of insight in their spiritual journey.
Our digital impact and influence has exceeded our hopes and expectations. The introduction of Alpha Online has led to the inclusion of people previously unable or unwilling to physically go to a church. In this way, Alpha continues to overcome barriers to faith.
Melinda Dwight, National Director of Alpha Australia says,