My post last Sunday about megachurches (and their copycat little brothers) canceling services the day after Christmas generated a massive response. Apparently, there were a lot of people who also felt it was a smidge ridiculous that in America we found an excuse to take a Sunday off while those in other parts of the world risk their lives to worship Jesus publicly on any day. And a good amount of people, especially those who commented, thought the connection between the persecuted church and canceling services was unfair.
That’s OK. I’m a big boy and can handle people disagreeing with me.
There were several spin-off posts generated which I’d like to call your attention to as they are worth reading:
- Do Megachurches Dishonor Iraqi Christians, by John Meunier (Mike took it the family direction)
- Freedom to Cancel Services, by Len Evans (Len went the Fox News route, but he lives in Texas so I gave him a pass.)
- American Christianity and Canceling Church, by Matthew McNutt (Matthew highlighted our ethnocentricity as Americans)
I learned three things from the post and its fallout.
- In general, American Christians don’t feel much of a kinship to non-American Christians. At least the majority of blog commenters would not put kinship above their individual churches rights to meet or not meet.
- Few people latched onto a central concept in the post that the church is our real family. I consider my community group part of my family, I’m left to assume that this family-feeling is not all that common. How can that be so?
- The priesthood of the staff is so deeply engrained that it was nearly 30 comments before someone brought up that churches canceling services could have just managed their resources/staff differently by empowering more lay people and depending on the staff less.
In the end, the post did more than I could have hoped for. Rather than simply getting a pile of people to agree with me or disagree with me… it seems as though the post generated the exact discussion I had hoped for. And getting church leaders to critically think about their ministry is about all I could ever ask.