Mac Pier, the CEO and founder of the New York City Leadership Center, sat down with The Christian Post earlier this month and shared about the state of the church in America's largest and most influential city. During his nearly 30 years in the city, Pier has helped to connect churches together through his work on the Concerts of Prayer, a network of congregations praying for each other; Movement Day, a national conference geared at helping churches work in an urban context; and the New York City Leadership Center, which seeks to equip Christian leaders within the city.
Below are excerpts from CP's interview earlier this month in which Pier reveals surprising facts about Christianity in New York. To watch the full interview, scroll down to watch the video embedded below.
1. "One of the demographic realities is that 90 percent of the active Christian church here is non-white." more >>
John MacArthur, author and pastor of Grace Community Church in Sun Valley, California recently equated churches that declare support for gay marriage are "Satan's church."
"They have no allegiance to the Bible," said MacArthur, in comments reported by The Blaze earlier this week.
"You go back to every one of those seminaries … for a century [they] have been deniers of biblical authority, they have no relationship to scripture, they are the apostate church, they are Satan's church." more >>
Evangelism can be intimidating. This is especially true for students who think that they're all alone in the effort. They walk up to their school feeling overwhelmed, like they're the last man standing. They're hesitant to post gospel truth on social media because it's not as appealing as everyone's selfies or "woman-crush-Wednesday."
They slouch in their desks because they're not sure how to raise an objection. Difficulty increases as feelings of intimidation and inadequacy come from people who are apparently uninterested. This often leads to isolation in evangelism.
Why is it like this? Pastor and evangelist, Greg Laurie, accurately describes this difficulty in evangelism: "There is one thing that both Christians and non-Christians have in common: they are both uptight about evangelism. Non-Christians are uptight about being evangelized, and Christians are uptight about evangelizing." So, how can we go from isolation to infiltration? How can we move from feeling uptight to starting an uprising? One primary way is to realize that you're not alone. more >>
A Catholic church in St. Paul, Minnesota, that closed last year has reopened its doors as a mosque.
The 127-year-old Church of St. John closed in 2013 when it merged with another church due to declining membership. Last Friday the building reopened as Darul-Uloom Islamic Center.
"There are a lot of East Africans in the area, and we want to give them a place to worship, a place to be educated, a community space," center spokesman Feisal M. Elmi told The Associated Press. more >>
NEW YORK — A 2013 Gallup poll found that most Americans think religion is losing its influence in the United States, while a religious landscape survey from the Pew Forum found that "the United States is on the verge of becoming a minority Protestant country." Could church planting be the key to turning these trends around?
Brent Storms, president & CEO of Orchard Group, a 66-year-old church planting network located in New York City, certainly thinks so. Storms planted his own church over 15 years ago, and for the past 10 years has assessed, trained and managed hundreds of other pastors who have felt called to found new Protestant communities.
In a recent interview with The Christian Post, Storms shared his views on how starting new churches can help Christianity thrive in America, and perhaps around the world. more >>
"As the Baby Boomer generation (born 1946-1964) passes on, megachurches are also dying off." I see statements like that often in the public media, but all the evidence says they're just plain wrong, based on a major research project I did with Scott Thumma.
Instead, the larger the church the greater the percentage of young adults go there on average. We found and wrote in Not Who You Think They Are (free download) that the average age of megachurch respondents is 40 years old, similar to the U.S. Census average. Yet the average age of an attender in a typical "non-megachurch" congregation is nearly 53 years old. Nearly two-thirds (62%) of megachurch attenders are under 45 years old, while only a third are that young in other size churches (35%).
Likewise, many more single adults are part of megachurches. Nearly a third of megachurch attenders are single, unmarried people. In a typical church (all sizes) singles account for just 10% of the congregation. It is more likely in a typical congregation that the vast majority (80%) of attenders will be married or widowed. Yet in our megachurch attender sample these groups account for only 55% of the congregation. The vast majority of the megachurch singles fall into the 18-44 age range, a group that is essentially missing in many churches . more >>