Emerging trends for the multisite church movement, which now includes at least 8,000 sites throughout the U.S., include the findings that churches with multiple locations grow faster, have more lay-person participation, and reach more new believers than single-site churches, according to a study by the Leadership Network.
"More churches will continue to explore multisites, not as a tool for growth but as a means of taking the church to more people and taking a healthy church and reproducing it in other places," said Warren Bird, Director of Research and Intellectual Capital Development for Leadership Network, during a web seminar Wednesday.
By definition, a multisite congregation is one church meeting in two or more locations under one overall leadership and budget. more >>
While affirming traditional marriage, Pope Francis said the Roman Catholic Church may be open to supporting certain cases of civil unions, particularly when it involves benefits such as healthcare. He made the comments in an extensive new interview with an Italian newspaper on Wednesday.
"Matrimony is between a man and a woman," the pope said in an article by the Corriere della Sera, translated by Catholic News Service, but added that "diverse situations of cohabitation [are] driven by the need to regulate economic aspects among persons, as for instance to assure medical care."
"It is necessary to look at the diverse cases and evaluate them in their variety," the Vatican leader added. more >>
A California congregation once affiliated with Presbyterian Church (USA) has voted to leave the mainline Protestant denomination for missional and administrative differences.
Menlo Park Presbyterian Church, a congregation with an estimated 3,400 members, voted overwhelmingly last Sunday to leave PCUSA.
Passing with a vote of 2,024 members in favor and 158 against, Menlo Park Presbyterian plans to join the Evangelical Covenant Order of Presbyterians (ECO). more >>
The only thing remotely religious about the Project ROSE program that seeks to rehabilitate sex workers in Arizona is that it is hosted by the Bethany Bible Church in Phoenix. It is also completely voluntary.
Recent media reports on the three year old project that was conceived through a partnership between the Arizona State University School of Social Work, the Phoenix Police Department and a number of other public and private agencies, however, have painted a different picture.
"Project ROSE is a Phoenix city program that arrests sex workers in the name of saving them. In five two-day stings, more than 100 police officers targeted alleged sex workers on the street and online," charged a VICE report. more >>
A campaign by Pastor Matthew Hagee to steer people away from watching the Oscars on TV and encourage them to see "Son of God" was largely responsible for a first place finish at the box office on Sunday, according to a Hollywood insider, even though the movie placed second behind "Non-Stop" for total ticket sales over the weekend.
Hagee, who partners with his father, Pastor John Hagee, to lead the 19,000-member Cornerstone Church in San Antonio, Texas, took to Twitter on Saturday evening to express his sentiments about how families should be spending their Sunday evening.
A Lutheran pastor from the United States who served as chaplain for some of the most notorious figures of the 20th century is the subject of a soon-to-be released book.
Henry Gerecke, a chaplain who served with the U.S. Armed Forces during World War II eventually found himself ministering to the spiritual needs of Nazi war criminals.
His story, long lost amid the major names and events of the 1940s, will be available to the public in a historical book titled, Mission at Nuremberg: An American Army Chaplain and the Trial of the Nazis. more >>