Reasons for a small church

Discussion in 'General Baptist Discussions' started by Salty, Nov 1, 2005.

  1. Salty

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    Apr 8, 2003
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    Thought this was an excellent article! [​IMG]

    Tuesday, November 01, 2005
    Small Churches: The Advantages
    Michael Hines has an interesting post on the advantage and disadvantages of small churches on his blog (The Discipler). Since I'm often accused (by a very small group of people) to be pro-mega-church and anti-small church; (which I'm not, by the way); I thought this would be a great discussion topic here. Today, we'll look at what Michael says are some real advantages of small churches. Tomorrow, we'll look at some of the disadvantages... Michael writes:

    First, in a smaller church you get to know everybody. That’s true especially for the really small congregation, but it is also true for the mid-size church. Those who have been there for some time know almost everyone in the church at least by name or by sight. There is a sense of belonging and a community of spirit that permeates the whole structure.

    Second, in a smaller church there can be a greater awareness of needs. Since the members know each other, those who face medical, economic, mental, or spiritual needs are known and have the help and sympathy of others. It isn’t always true, of course, but the response to a need can come more quickly from a smaller group that identifies itself as “family.”

    Third, in a smaller church the ministers can truly shepherd the sheep. Although I’ve never thought it was the minister’s responsibility alone to call, counsel, or shepherd, there is a sense of closeness that develops between the committed shepherd and the congregation. The minister almost becomes a “father” figure and has far more direct contact with his flock than the senior minister in a mega-church. In a mega-church, one of the members asked the caller who had come to see them in the hospital when the senior minister was going to come see them. The caller responded, “You don’t want to be that sick.” And so it goes!

    Fourth, in a smaller church there is a stronger sense of tradition. Tradition can be either good or bad, but when it is good it binds together people better than slick programs or beautiful structures. Traditions create loyalties and identifications that can be positive and helpful.

    Fifth, in a smaller church there is a strong sense of identity. Of course, that identity can sometimes degenerate into a prejudice against those “ho aren’t like us.” Nonetheless, there are positive benefits for gathering people together who come from similar backgrounds, interests, and occupations.

    Sixth, in a smaller church there is a greater tolerance with those who make an effort. Aunt Mary may not be the most accomplished pianist in the world, but she tries hard and hits most of the notes so she is loved and accepted. Besides, she may be the only one who can even play. Professional quality is not often available in the smaller church, but loving acceptance for those who make the effort is.

    Your thoughts? (Remember... part two is tomorrow!)

    I pasted the article, beacuse after a day or two, it may not be available. The link can be found at SMALL CHURCHES

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