Big changes are happening on the American religious scene. This is my constant theme. Many in the declining traditional Protestant churches often seem perplexed. Why are those community churches growing while we are going down? There is no simple answer, but some explanations are emerging.
In the 1980s and 90s, there was a ministry discipline called Church Growth. It grew out of the observations of Donald McGavran, who studied mission movements. His work was popularized by C. Peter Wagner. Both worked out of Fuller Theological Seminary, where I was in the 80s. One of McGavran’s key insights was that people don’t become believers individually; they do so in groups. Out of this came the controversial homogeneous principle. People like to go to church with others like themselves.Read More