[Reform Ireland] 30 Sep 2006--‘Always winter and never Christmas’, that line from C S Lewis’ The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe could be reasonably applied to much within the Church of Ireland today. The embracing of moral relativism (especially in the area of human sexuality), the liberal theological outlook of many of the clergy and the lack of confidence and conviction in the Bible as the Word of God has led to churches declining, both numerically and spiritually. Sadly there appears to be a blanket of complacency and apathy amongst many and a refusal to recognise the crisis facing the Church of Ireland today. So how can we bring spring into the winter of the Church of Ireland? When you examine churches that are growing, within Ireland and the rest of the world, it is clear that the majority are evangelical with an emphasis on expository preaching of the Word of God. For example if you look at the Anglican diocese of Sydney, you can see that it has experienced a 9% growth in church numbers which is at odds with the 7% decline of Anglican churches in Australia generally. Why? It is apparent that the difference is in focus on preaching the Word of God.