Skip to comments.Mega-church downsizes, cuts non-essential members
Posted on 08/29/2013 11:06:02 AM PDT by Gamecock
WINSTON-SALEM Julie and Bob Clark were stunned to receive a letter from their church in July asking them to participate in the life of the church or worship elsewhere.
They basically called us freeloaders, says Julie.
We were freeloaders, says Bob.
In a trend that may signal rough times for wallflower Christians, bellwether mega-church Faith Community of Winston-Salem has asked non-participating members to stop attending.
No more Mr. Nice Church, says the executive pastor, newly hired from Cingular Wireless. Bigger is not always better. Providing free services indefinitely to complacent Christians is not our mission.
Freeloading Christians were straining the churchs nursery and facility resources and harming the churchs ability to reach the lost, says the pastor.
When your bottom line is saving souls, you get impatient with people who interfere with that goal, he says.
Faith Community sent polite but firm letters to families who attend church services and freebie events but never volunteer, never tithe and do not belong to a small group or other ministry. The church estimates that of its 8,000 regular attendees, only half have volunteered in the past 3 years, and a third have never given to the church.
Before now, we made people feel comfortable and welcome, and tried to coax them to give a little something in return, says a staff member. Thats changed. Were done being the community nanny.
Surprisingly, the move to dis-invite people has drawn positive response from men in the community who like the idea of an in-your-face church.
I thought, A church that doesnt allow wussies that rocks, says Bob Clark, who admires the church more since they told him to get lost.
He and Julie are now tithing and volunteering. Weve taken our place in church life, he says.
Modern church discipline is a form letter. Who knew?
It’s all about $$$. Why? Because it always is...
New King James Version (NKJV)
Faith Without Works Is Dead
14 What does it profit, my brethren, if someone says he has faith but does not have works? Can faith save him? 15 If a brother or sister is naked and destitute of daily food, 16 and one of you says to them, Depart in peace, be warmed and filled, but you do not give them the things which are needed for the body, what does it profit? 17 Thus also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead.
18 But someone will say, You have faith, and I have works. Show me your faith without your[a] works, and I will show you my faith by my[b] works. 19 You believe that there is one God. You do well. Even the demons believeand tremble! 20 But do you want to know, O foolish man, that faith without works is dead?[c] 21 Was not Abraham our father justified by works when he offered Isaac his son on the altar? 22 Do you see that faith was working together with his works, and by works faith was made perfect? 23 And the Scripture was fulfilled which says, Abraham believed God, and it was accounted to him for righteousness.[d] And he was called the friend of God. 24 You see then that a man is justified by works, and not by faith only.
25 Likewise, was not Rahab the harlot also justified by works when she received the messengers and sent them out another way?
26 For as the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead also.
I’m sorry, but is there actually something about Christianity with either side?
It seems like your average Mosque is more Christian these days than these worship warehouses.
Interesting. Have to think about this one a bit.
“It seems like your average Mosque is more Christian these days than these worship warehouses.”
As little as I think of Islam these days, at least they have some standards. Most “Christian” establishments have an unwritten sign outside stating, “No matter what you want, we can do it.”
So, if you tossed a few bucks into the basket without signing your name then you’re donation wasn’t needed.
“Lark” is like a Christian “Onion”. This is satire.
did you read the article?
it also includes volunteering
which can be harder to find that money
A church of that size with that many activities needs People to staff the events
and people who do it for free
I'm not going to judge beyond saying that there is a surplus of nearly empty churches who ask little or nothing from their parishoners and a shortage of crowded churches which do ask something.
The megachurch form of worship is not for me. But they do a lot of people a lot of good. Our voting precinct is at a megachurch. Don't care for the style of worship, but they are nice people. They've always got an information table near the exit and invite departing voters to partake of muffins, cookies and/or coffee when they depart.
Once in a blue moon, I'll even attend a service and leave a couple of bucks in the collection basket out of appreciation for their niceness.
Just another business, none of this, “You received free, give free”, stuff.
Lark is a fake Church news web site meant to poke fun at Christian Churches.
I had to read two or three articles to be sure, but I finally figured it out. Good satire. Really had me fooled for a minute.
What gave it away? The Fast Pass for the Nursery School or the Horoscopes?
give them a call and get more information
I believed it
I am so stupid
thanks for the truth
Satire aside, I never give traceable funds, always cash or items. The Word says give without expecting return nor boasting. I don’t claim charity on taxes either.
At first I thought their Bishops weren’t going to let them attend their temple unless they proved they were tithing 10%.
Then I realized this was a joke. No one in their right mind would give a bishop the power to deny a church member access to their church’s most holy place. That is between the believer and God.
I LOVE it!!!!!!!
I'm not saying all mega churches are bad, just my experience with the ones I've attended left me feeling like an outsider, very impersonal behavior from supposed Christians.
The horoscope link was hilarious. I thought, “What kind of church would promote horoscopes?”... funny stuff.
More like lampooning the whole mega church phenomena.
*sigh* Great satire.
I should have know it was too good to be true.
And yet I wonder if someone really tried that, if they wouldn’t actually get that result.
Sometimes Christian Churches need to be poked a bit.
Or, in common place vernacular, "Put your money where your mouth is!"
Willow Creek also surveyed it’s membership to see what they wanted more of. A large number said they wanted more doctrine.
Willow Creek’s answer was they needed to teach them to be “self-feeders.”
So much for the instruction to feed the sheep.
I prefer how my pastor handled this issue, by teaching!
I have yet to hear of any Catholic sect demanding its flock PROVE its members are “contributing”. I have heard some strong sermons about it, but that’s as far as it gets, because the genuinely faithful just need an occasional reminder of their duty.
Must be a proddy/baptist/lutheran/reformed/whatever thing...
Dang, I got sucked in by a satire.
It doesn’t happen often, but I went hook, line, and sinker.
Must be a proddy/baptist/lutheran/reformed/whatever thing...(Lark News == satire)
But if the church is not teaching doctrine, what in the world is it teaching, and why? If it is not teaching the Word of God, then it really needs to get into some other business because it is not fulfilling the mission of the church.
I need to think about this one for a while to figure out what spirit this is done with before I could have an opinion to go with my initial reaction.
In the families I grew up in, you were to contribute, not be a burden. Not pulling your own way was definitely a sin in those family situations, as was waiting to be told to do something you saw needed to be done.
Take your money from where your heart is................
Everything and anything seems believable nowadays, even this.
Let not your left hand know what your right hand is doing..........Matthew 6:3..........
I realize that this is satire. But there is an element of truth. For example, no local synagogue will let you be a member unless you tithe. There are reductions for single parents, etc., but no freeloaders.
Kick out the old, poor and the lame. that is not a good deed.
To avoid wasting your fellow freeper’s time, please put (satire) or (humor) in the headline. It’s really not very nice to do this.
it’s not nice to fool Mother Mamzelle ...
No, it us not. I think this is a cheap trick and you’re about as funny as Jon Stewart.
The only thing that fooled you was a manipulative and dishonest headline. Any punk can ring a doorbell and run away—no cleverness to that at all.
See my #36...