The Attendance Syndrome and the Consumer-Driven Church, Part 2

Paul at a church gathering in Ephesus

(In Part 1 of this article we described how the consumerism mindset has impacted the church, contemporary Christianity’s focus on attendance and how all that contrasted with the way the early believers lived and met as a church.)

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The Attendance Syndrome and the Consumer-Driven Church, Part 1

church worship service

One of Covid-19’s far-reaching changes was the trend towards working from home – an unprecedented and ongoing phenomenon facilitated by the rise of connectivity and communication technologies, according to a paper from Cornell University’s SC Johnson College of Business.1

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Beyond Rituals

traditional worship service

During my early grade school years my grandmother took me with her to attend mass not only during Sundays but sometimes even during weekdays. Most of the time I merely agreed to go. Somehow, religion, and religious rituals in particular, did not appeal to me. Later, my religion teacher in sixth grade would berate me for my lack of interest in the subject.

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Patience: Learning to Trust in God’s Process

waiting

When I left the hospital and returned home in August last year, I expected things to quickly return to “normal.” Before I was discharged, I would often dream about dining on food I had missed during my 112-day stay at the hospital. But within a week I realized this was not to be the case.

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Lest We Forget

Israelites crossing the Sea of Reeds

In Exodus 14, we read how the Israelites were rescued by God from slavery and then delivered from Pharaoh and his pursuing army after they miraculously crossed the Red Sea (Exodus 14). But just two chapters later they grumble and complain about not having anything to eat. We can easily castigate the Israelis for their lack of trust in God who just performed a great miracle. How could they so easily have forgotten?

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The Things I Took for Granted

feet of walking couple

My physical therapist shared the story of one of his former patients who was paralyzed from the neck down and could only move her eyes when her therapy began. After a while she was able to eat, then talk and then after a few more months she was able to begin moving her hands. At this stage, when her paralysis had moved from the waist down she opted to stop the therapy. She was already happy with the results.

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A Way Out

The first time I was intubated at the hospital following a case of bacterial pneumonia and sepsis, I was sedated for 6 days. My kidneys also failed around this time and I had to undergo dialysis and blood transfusion 2-3 times a week. After 6 days an x-ray indicated that I was doing fine. But at 5PM that same day my lungs collapsed. I had to be intubated and sedated again.

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Don’t Be Afraid. Just Believe.

“We’ll have to intubate you,” sounded the clear voice of the pulmonologist during our consultation meeting. I had spent two weeks at the hospital after getting rushed there due to a Covid infection that dropped my oxygen saturation to near-dangerous levels. To complicate matters, I was also having an asthma attack and developed pneumonia in both lungs. But after two weeks the doctors were able to control my situation and hopes were high that I would soon be going home.

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Church: It’s More Than a Meeting

Acts Christians sharing food

Do you know that gangs might have more things in common with the church or ekklesia in the first century than with the majority of today’s traditional churches? We don’t mean the crime and violence usually associated with them, but strangely these notorious groups seem to have grasped what it means to be a family than many Christians do today.

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House Church Made Simple: The Idiot’s Guide (Part 2)

house church clip art

Although we’ve been asked a few times to give a message (Leo) or to lead a praise and worship band (Nina), for the most part we’ve quietly and obediently sat at church services as a handful of people led the congregation. This is of course considered perfectly normal in Christendom but deep inside, somehow, we felt there was something lacking.

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