Which Direction is the Christian Church Headed?

  • Church as a social center: Whether people would like to admit it or not, many people have historically gone to church simply because it is a good social outlet. Again, you’re not going to hear me say that is necessarily a bad thing, but with the advent of things like social media, people are increasingly having their social needs filled through over non-church avenues. This decreases a person’s necessity to use the church as that social outlet.
  • Low pay / poor benefits for church pastors: One of the hardest things I’ve witnessed amongst many friends is how little church pastors are supported from a monetary perspective. Of course, I don’t think these people are going into ministry for the money, but the reality is that these people still need to put food on the table for their families. I know many friends who are barely making above minimum wage and have zero health benefits, and watching them stress about health insurance is really sad. I know several who have left the ministry entirely to take jobs at like Starbucks simply so they can support themselves and their families. For many churches, this means the only takers they can get for these jobs are basically super underskilled people, and that’s putting it nicely. I’ve heard way too many stories about how these underskilled people will blatantly plagiarize sermons from online sources, so it’s pretty clear these people have no moral upstanding. Not the kind of person you want leading a church!
  • Modern social issues: Over the last several years, Americans have seen quite the change in a number of core social issues, including gay marriage, abortion rights, and trans rights. The Christian church has had a very hard time reconciling these issues. While there have been pockets of churches that have been more embracing of these changes, most of them have quietly tried to act like they’re not a thing so as not to cause conflict, and they’ve gotten away with it in many smaller, rural churches because those congregations simply don’t experience those issues firsthand. But as American society continues to trend this way, even the smaller, rural churches are going to have to handle these issues more directly, and especially given the previous point, I don’t see many churches handling those scenarios well.
  • COVID-19: I’ll be frank: I think the Christian church really messed up the handling of COVID-19. Whether you agree with them or not, most churches took a hard stance that largely aligned with far right views, and I think that hurt them bad. I think even a lot of people who would consider themselves “centrists” would agree that the church really screwed up here. Between the discouragement mask use and vaccinations, the church painted themselves into a “far right” corner, and I’m not sure they can ever drop that identity going forward.

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David Hundley

David Hundley

Principal machine learning engineer at a Fortune 50 company, 5x AWS certified, 2x HashiCorp certified, 1x GCP certified, M.A. in Org Leadership, PMP, ChFC, CSM