Monday, October 23, 2006

Institutionalism and the Poor

"There is loose in the church the strange idea that solid, self-supporting churches cannot be planted among the poor, at least not without heavy subsidies and leadership from richer churches. There is some truth to this - if we mean churches modeled after the traditional institutionalized pattern of expensive buildings and bureaucratic organization."
- Howard A. Snyder, Radical Renewal: The Problem of Wineskins Today, p. 37.

Institutionalism has dealt a devastating blow to ministering the gospel to the poor. This should come as no surprise when one considers that the primary goal of institutionalism is self-preservation. So it is perceived that the poor become a drain on the institution, unable to contribute to its well-being. The poor lack the resources to maintain and enable the institution to thrive.
Obviously, the institutional church cannot follow it's Lord while functioning from a mindset that is completely opposite of his. Could it be that the present wave of people dropping out of the institutional church might not have something to do with God moving, unsuspected by us, to bring forth a church that is free to take the gospel to the poor, having escaped the self-serving clutches of institutionalism?

Comments: Post a Comment

<< Home

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?