There’s no place like megachurch. What?

Posted: September 25, 2008 in Above the Fold, Denominational Fun, IJS, Networking, Snap, Crackle and POP Culture
Tags: , , , , , , ,

This story from the Washington Post is an oxymoronic orthopraxy. How’s that for alliteration? Get this:

Congregants find megachurches offer more personal worship and sense of community than smaller churches, according to a study released yesterday that challenges the conventional wisdom that some large churches are too big to offer a spiritual experience.

Uh yeah, about that. That is saying two different things.

  1. Personal worship, not so much. That’s like saying in China, “I feel so alone.” ‘Nuff said.
  2. Sense of community, of course. You see, in places like Fellowship Church, Willow Creek, Lakewood and Saddleback, it’s more than a “sense” of community. It’s an actual community. All we are missing is a fire department and those churches could fight for annexation.

That aside, the Institute for Studies of Religion did find some interesting church fun facts on their study of megachurches:

  • Their members were twice as likely to have friends in the congregation than members of small churches.
  • Megachurches tend to be more evangelical than small churches
  • 92 percent of megachurch members believe that hell “absolutely exists,” compared with just over three-quarters of small-church members
  • 80 percent of megachurch worshippers believe that the Rapture will “absolutely” take place, compared with less than half of those who attend small churches

So, where does that leave the body of Christ? Purists are crying out for a real church expereince and believe that can’t be found in a place where the walls can’t be seen and the people in the chairs are faceless, nameless and often conviction-less.

Then comes this introspective study to debunk all of that ballyhoo. HiScrivener has a theory: Make your church experience – YOURS. Go there, worship God, believe in Jesus and make a relationship out of it. If you fancy being a fly on the wall in a big house, or a fly in the ointment at a small one, who cares? What matters is that you follow God and love the Lord… regardless of where you show up on Sundays.

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Comments
  1. Interesting post. I think there are positives and negatives in both small and mega churches. I’ve been a memeber of both. I felt very disconnected in the megachurch while in the small church I had friends that felt like family. People who would speak to me in the middle of the week and pray for me when I needed. Megachurches have more financial resources so they can be more evangelical. (Depends on how you define that.) Every person has their own experience so it is hard for me to put much trust in article like the one noted here. I ask myself, “Who did they interview to get these stats.” Not everyone I’m sure.

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