The diocese of Oxford hopes to tackle the shortage of men who attend church. The diocese has joined Men and the Church (MATCH) to host a one-day conference on 5 February, “offering resources and ideas for churches wanting to reach unchurched men with the gospel, exploring why so many men leave the Church, and [encouraging] new strategies for evangelism to men."

The Church of England’s head of research and statistics, the Revd Lynda Barley, said that about two-thirds of regular worshippers were women. The Revd Paul Eddy, founder of MATCH, said that, in many churches, the ratio was one man to every four women.

Clergy across the diocese, both male and female, were “very concerned” about the shortage of men in their congregations, he said, and had asked for “resources and support” to help attract them.

COMMENT: Of course, OCICBW... has been leading the way in the push to get more men into church. Our campaign to get rid of ugly female vicars so we can replace them with babelicious stunners has not, so far, been embraced by the Church of England. But as soon as we get rid of Rowan "Under Jane's Thumb" Williams, I'm sure it will be taken up throughout the land. Personally, I've done my bit. At my last church I imposed a very strict dress policy. The hem line on any woman under the age of forty (and those over forty without varicose veins) had to be at least six inches above the knee or they weren't allowed in. And howzabout getting rid of those embarrassing overhead screens with those even more embarrassing praise hymns projected onto them, and, in stead, showing Sky Sports on a proper big screen?

But I'm sure you lot have loads more good ideas. What can the local church do to attract blokes into their services? Over to you!



  1. The over-forties ladies with varicose veins, but otherwise nice legs, could wear opaque tights with their six-inches-above-the-knee skirts.

    Don’t say I never did nothin’ for ya, MadPriest.

  2. This is MadPriest at his best. Stick it to everybody. Not the recent MP who slobbers for financial support. Charles

  3. [What do you slobber for, Charles? Attention?]

    @Adrian: heh-heh.

    The notion of “attracting ______ to services” leaves me WTF. “Services” are about praising/eating God: some inculturation&tinkering is fine, but to a good extent, it’s like it or lump it.

    …but The Church is more than “services.” The basic attitude of The Church to the Imago Dei, all of them, is Go Where They Are. If The Church goes to where men are, it will learn how to include them—as men learn how to include The Church (mutually). It may not involve “services”, but who cares?

  4. I just don’t get this whole ‘poor old men, the nasty women have forced them out of the church’, when the whole bloomin’ hierarchy of the church is male. I’d have a bit more sympathy with such campaigns if they did not try so consiously to ape the very serious campaigns for women’s representation (MATCH being an obvious, and rather distasteful, rip-off of WATCH), as though the issues were equivalent.

    Women below 40 with less than perfect legs can look good in opaque tights too, Mimi! And it means you don’t have to shave them.