3 – Megachurches Are Cults of Personality
Thumma writes “Pastors are often the center of attention whether the church is large or small…It is not surprising that megachurches are often identified by the names of their senior pastors. Any successful enterprise can come to be characterized by its leader. But it is unfortunate that this reality has led critics to suggest that megachurches are more about a pastor’s ego than about God’s kingdom (p. 55-56).”
We are often quick to criticize churches that grow under a certain pastor’s leadership, but good leaders will attract teams to work with them. Those teams will grow and, at times, the churches will become larger and larger– perhaps event [sic] a megachurch. That does not make it a cult of personality.
Certainly, a church of ANY size can become a sort of “personality cult” (I’ve known a few in churches around 50 or less). It just seems easier to accuse mega-churches of this. Any accusation against mega-churches can be true and the same can be said of small and mid-sized churches, or even just churches in general. The question isn’t can it be true, the question needs to be is it true in this particular instance and what is being done well, wherever it happens to be found. There are healthy mega-churches and unhealthy ones. I, for one, would rather see ways that churches (and their respective pastors) can be healthier no matter the size. So I was at least grateful for Ed’s reminder of the generalizations that function as “myths” about mega-churches.
Read the rest of the “myths” HERE. And while your at it, what are your thoughts on the topic of the health of mega-churches?