Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Megachurch vs minichurch

The world today is seeing an interesting phenomena amongst Christianity. On the one hand, megachurches are expanding their influence, becoming the dominant players in American Christianity. As a result, Christianity becomes less localized and more glocalized. This is fine if the entire world has the same problems, and the messages hit the hearts of the people who listen. But there are major problems with satelite churches. See this article for a very interesting perspective.

On the other hand, the crazy haired hippies are now forming a house church movement, which has even affected our congregation. People do "real church" the way it originally was. What if our situation is different than the situation 2000 years ago? Surely we can emphasize the proximity of house churches over and against the anonymity of megachurches. But it is easier to paint yourself into a corner this way, too. Remove ourselves from the greater body of Christ.

Both megachurches and minichurches (as I have officially now named house churches) seem to be thriving at the moment. You can choose anonymity, hype, and momentum (plus ability to change the world with huge amounts of recources) or sincerity, fallibility (unacountability), and intimacy (and a major emphasis on true community).

The group hurting through this time is that group who is in the middle. Like our economic situation, the middle class gets hit hardest. Losing members to both mini and megachurches, the local congregation as a cultural center is no more.

Good, bad, or indifferent?

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