Saddleback Church Pastor Rick Warren has shared a "hard message" with followers, telling them that many Christians do not love the church.

"Too many Christians use the church, but don't love it. This is a hard message for many of us to hear," Warren said Wednesday on his Facebook page.

"We've been deeply hurt by members of the church, we've been disappointed, we can be discouraged. But the Church is the bride of Christ. It's the hope of the world, the vessel through which God works out his plan. We have to learn to love the church," he continued.

"For some of us that means there's people we need to forgive, for others it means we need to get involved in service, and for others it means we need to change how we talk of the church. Jesus loves his church. If for no other reason than that — we must love the church also."

Warren has in the past called for Christian unity in a number of issues, including a large outreach program aimed at reaching out to the last remaining 3,000 groups of people who have never heard the Gospel.

Warren announced in November he is partnering up with Christian speaker Francis Chan for the "H" Initiative for Daring Faith, which in a conference in December brought together ideas about ministering to unreached and religiously unengaged people.

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