Wednesday, March 10, 2010

To Franchise of Not

As we move closer to the second decade of the 21st century, the face of the Western American church is changing, and whether it is for the better or not remains to be seen.

Some years back I read that brand loyalty is a dying core value on the American consumer landscape. Further I read that denominational loyalty and brand naming is seeing a similar decline; ergo the dropping of denominational names from signage and church advertising (ours included).

My question is this: Has the product lost its quality and relativity to the consumer? Or has the consumer morphed into a self centered dissatisfied eating machine, whose appetite for change is less driven by need as it is an insatiable lust for more and different; all because more and different are readily available (especially with the infusion of artificially deserved credit in both religion and commerce).

The days of denominational franchising may be all but over. It used to be that one could travel the country and find very common ground amongst churches of like denomination, but that standard IS disappearing rapidly.

Will it be possible to maintain doctrinal core values across the religious spectrum or have we come to our spiritual Rubicon?

Your opinions are needed and welcome.

1 comment:

  1. I think it's this sort of cookie-cutter mentality that has created the ecclesial mess we're in. We tell people about this relationship, but then we require them to adapt themselves to the mold we've created. Relationships aren't like that, which is why it doesn't feel real to people.

    You just can't build relationship around doctrines, else you've merely created another sect of Judaism. Relationships have to be built on freedom, and that's hard, because you can't control people if they're free. And to have a cohesive organization, there has to be control. In other words the thing we feel like we need to accomplish (our organization) tends to work against the thing we claim to be about (freedom in Christ).

    It would take a lot of guts for a church leader to really allow people to be free to walk according to their own relationship with Christ.