That the church has an image problem would come as no surprise to any of you. Almost every day one is confronted with stupid and inappropriate things done and said by groups and individuals who claim to represent Christ. Sometimes it gets so bad i start waiting for someone to tell me it is all a prank because surely no-one would do something so absurdly wrong in real life.
It is easy to despair about the Church. Were we to be permanently left to our own devices despair and hopelessness would be entirely justified. If it was up to us to perfect the church on our own, we may as well give up.
We can hope because we are not going to be left to continually mess things up forever. Jesus is coming back for his church. On that day we will not be the mess we are now. We will be made new. On that day we will be like a bride, beautiful, pure and flawless. On that day Jesus won't need new PR because we will be made perfect. No more scandals, no more pain, no more division.
Because that day is coming, we can hold on. Of course we should strive towards holiness now, though those strivings will very often fall short. We can persist because we know that while the church is now often like an ugly, unfaithful woman, one day she will be like a beautiful bride. Today when the church frustrates us, may we hold that one day in mind.