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Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Where are the BIG churches?

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May 10, 2006 in Megachurches | Permalink

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In our community I am surrounded by mega church - literally. There is one to my north, south, and east and west. I think we will be niche church. :)

Posted by: Kent | May 10, 2006 4:17:36 PM

I am only surprised to see Michigan and Ohio in the top 10; I wouldn't have guessed that.

What has me REALLY curious is the "faith" stats. "Traditional", "moderate", and "seeker" seem to suggest methodology, not theology/faith. I wonder how those terms are defined. And who decided if a church is seeker or evangelical? I'd be really concerned about a church that was seeker-sensitive but not evangelical!

Posted by: Randy Ehle | May 10, 2006 6:59:14 PM

Yeah, I wondered about that too.

I'm also a little interested in the mega churches that choose "fundamentalist" over "traditional." That decision has a nice militant ring to it.

Posted by: Chris | May 10, 2006 8:19:00 PM

I found a couple answers to my own questions by going to the Hartford Institute for Religion website, where I found more details about the study. It looks like the responding churches described themselves by those "faith" categories, but I couldn't tell if there were definitions provided to the churches.

I think that it's also good to keep in mind that Hartford uses size alone to define megachurch. Their benchmark is 2,000 though apparently they included churches at 1,800+ in the survey. I'm concerned, though, when any single factor is used as a defining point. Obviously Willow Creek, Saddleback, and Osteen's church are in a far different "class" than Flood San Diego.

[Sidebar: Why is it that I can think of the names of Willow Creek and Saddleback, but Osteen's church is just...well, "Osteen's church"? Kind of scary, though probably just my own personal experience and lack of exposure to his church compared to Osteen himself.]

Posted by: Randy Ehle | May 11, 2006 12:38:28 PM

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