The question I get asked a lot is; What church model is the best?
House church, Community church, or mega-church?
Let’s take a quick peek at each one and see which is truly ‘the best” church model.
Should we be going back to house churches? Those with this outlook believe that the Book of Acts is our mandate.
Acts 2:46 – They worshiped together at the Temple each day, met in homes for the Lord’s Supper, and shared their meals with great joy and generosity all the while praising God and enjoying the goodwill of all the people. And each day the Lord added to their fellowship those who were being saved.
Just an observation: They met at the temple, and they met in their homes. (Seems like a “yes and ” situation versus one or the other).
The thought process behind some house churches and house church movements is a return to simplicity. This would mean that there is not just one person sharing the word or teaching. This role would be divided amongst those within the church.
The beauty of the house church – also known in some circles as micro churches, is the lack of any overhead. There is no church building to rent, no building maintenance and no need for a sound system you might find in larger church models. The money saved could then be used to help those who are less fortunate, for missions, etc.
But the question is: are house churches better? Are they healthier? Are they more effective?
My answer: MAYBE… maybe not.
The community church is not so much a model as it is a number and an atmosphere. Many of the newer contemporary churches are considered community churches because they are below the mega amount of 2000 people in weekly attendance. Their format and atmosphere is similar to a mega church… just fewer people.
Behind the scenes, it may look very similar to the larger churches: some hired staff, numerous volunteers and a budget that seems to be non-existent at times. (smile – I understand this all too well)
A family feel can still be found in a church of fewer than 400 people in attendance. You can be fully immersed within church life and activities fairly quickly.
Small groups are typical within community style churches just the same as Sunday school was typical in legacy churches. The idea is to build relationships and encourage one another.
You will probably see a worship team and various volunteers at the door, welcoming folks into the worship gathering. Many community churches offer youth groups, children’s ministries, and numerous volunteer opportunities.
Are community churches the best church model? Read on
Large churches tend to get a bad rap in some circles, but I am here to tell you, the majority that I know are doing great work! These large churches seem to be getting bigger and ever expanding through satellite locations.
Do they have some drawback/cons? Absolutely, but so do the other church models.
Are they the best way to go/ Should we all endeavor to have mega-churches?
God is working within each of these three models. My heart breaks when we talk negatively about any of them. Please understand that this the Bride of Christ that we are criticizing.
Instead of being critical, let’s celebrate the differences. We are the Body of Christ, and each has a different function. Each model has the ability to reach folks who are far from Christ. Each model can reach people who would never set foot into a different church type.
Remember – we are all Team Jesus.
John 13:35 By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.”