Christianity is doomed to be a sect because not only do we refuse to give the answers to life’s questions in terms the world finds comfortable; we also refuse to allow the world to set the terms of the questions. The sooner we grasp that, the better it will be for all of us. Our ministers might then spend more time on theology (perhaps even do a bit of reading ‘within the tradition’ before finding it helpful to ‘read outside the tradition’), more time being different to the leaders in the surrounding culture, and much less time worrying about how the world sees us. Trust me on this: it sees us as a cranky sect. Now keep calm and carry on.
Two things came to mind: the beautiful young things of the reformed renaissance have a hard choice to make in the next decade. You really do kid only yourselves if you think you can be an orthodox Christian and be at the same time cool enough and hip enough to cut it in the wider world. Frankly, in a couple of years it will not matter how much urban ink you sport, how much fair trade coffee you drink, how many craft brews you can name, how much urban gibberish you spout, how many art house movies you can find that redeemer figure in, and how much money you divert from gospel preaching to social justice: maintaining biblical sexual ethics will be the equivalent in our culture of being a white supremacist.
In other words, the world is just like God: it accepts no half-servants.