I am not a man of the cloth. Three hail Marys at a perceived indiscretion are not for me, and neither is admitting my sins in the confessional, although I believe in live and let live and more power to your elbow if you are one of the flock.

I live in a Catholic household and admire the ethos, sense of community and devotion to God practised, to varying degree, by those around me. Alas, football remains my god and stadia my places of worship. Cheering on sub-intellectual young men with bank balances that put some nations' GDP figures to shame is no more ludicrous, to my mind, than devoting one’s life to a man who could allegedly walk on water, and turn it into wine. If only timing had been different, David Blaine could have been the Messiah and would be nailed-on favourite to receive the international bartender of the year award.

I admire the church and what it stands for but am of the firm belief that it is missing a trick or five. Now suffering the consequences of seemingly terminal decline, through falling bums on seats, the need to adapt or die has never been more relevant. If the church were a band, it would be said it was in desperate need of a new album as, much like Heart's playlist, they have been smashing out the same hits on repeat for nigh on two millennia.

For some churches, change has been slow and reactionary, but evident, with the penny dropping through the implementation of children’s rooms. As a nod to current society, it is a boon for those who want to worship on a Sunday but down want to feel the heat of 200 pairs of eyes as little Jake throws a hissy fit and attempts to pull off the vicar's outer cassock.

The seats are generally of hardwood construction, no doubt to show us a little of the suffering the messiah suffered. For me, with an ongoing bad back, the pain is too restricting and I generally opt out and placate myself with Peston on Sunday.

The modernity of the hymns' lyrics are also lacking. "I was cold, I was naked, were you there? were you there?" sounds like the opening credits to a Nordic noir drama on Channel 4. As a kid, we went through an entire academic year convinced that Kumbaya was one of the Brazilian World cup squad as we sang "Someone’s sleeping my lord, kumbaya".

On a serious note, I have concerns for the church as we know it. The church statistics report shows that, since 1930, as a percentage of the UK population, those attending church has dropped from 30 per cent to 11 per cent in 2010 and 10.3 per cent in 2013. At the current rate it is predicted by 2025 this will drop to 8.4 per cent.

Although not a club card-carrying member, I fully buy into the ethos and sense of community the church gives. That said, and I don’t mean to trivialise, change is overdue. It should be treated like any business or product. Big business does it well: McDonald’s with the product extension of drive thrus and tablets on tables being a point in question.

Give other USPs for the youth and families to tempt them away from tumultuous competition brought on by technology and low boredom thresholds. The proposition of sitting on a freezing cold bench in the middle of winter while smelling joss sticks and listening to a geriatric play the organ badly just isn’t selling it to me to be blunt.

Give Jessie J and Ed Sheeran a go at composing a new gospel anthem, offer headphones to listen to pre-recordings of updated versions of hymns, install a couple of blow heaters, put cushions on the seats, add a snack bar and a couple of interactive touch sensitive screens and maybe, just maybe you will save yourself. I for one am saddened to see empty pews but it is a decline that needs a jolt to alter the direction toward the abyss.

Against the odds, if the church can raise its game, I may even be tempted to attend and will gladly sing hosanna to the awakening of a slumbering giant. Thankfully, church performances do not clash with the football as I’ve got an appointment with Eurosport later. If Brazil are playing, I want to see if Kumbaya is making a rare appearance from the bench.

  • Brett Ellis is a teacher from London Colney