Church Reviews

After work the other day, I hopped into my car and picked up this story in the middle; so I had to race home and hear the whole thing! Note, the original audio has more than the written transcript, but there are some revealing snippets.

For starters, the lead in announcer frames the question in terms of Church being something you might try out because it’s Easter.

The military housewife says “we’re churchgoers” instead of “we’re Christians,” and at the end, she asserts “Church is about relationships.” It’s probably not surprising that Church being about Christ is not in view.

The most interesting part is the middle, about Mars Hill & Driscoll. The written version has a link to the Yelp page for Mars Hill, and you can get sucked in reading all those comments! One quoted commenter (in the audio) says that Mars Hill is great because Driscoll “just preaches exactly what the Bible says.” (I wonder where is that pastor who would stand up and say, “yeah, I preach something different than what the Bible says.”) And Driscoll himself, while correctly disparaging the persuasive worth of a Yelp review, doesn’t help too much by grounding it all on “I believe what I believe.”

Around these parts, we have a column in the San Diego Reader called “Sheep and Goats,” in which the reviewer visits churches around the city and reviews them. These reviews seem to be much more useful, more objective and content-driven, and even touching on actual theology! They always end with the reviewer asking the pastor “What happens after death?” My church was reviewed in 2005 and 2008.

So what’s your review of all these reviews?

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5 Responses to Church Reviews

  1. Zrim says:

    I guess I’m not sure how a review that is “much more useful, more objective and content-driven, and even touching on actual theology” gets us out from the forest of religious consumerism.

  2. todd says:

    Zrim,

    When I lived in Escondido I found the “Sheep and Goats” reviews extremely insightful as to an unbeliever’s perspective on what is important to a church from visiting once.

  3. Zrim says:

    Todd,

    Yes, I’m sure from that perspective it is quite intriguing. I like reading those sorts of things for the same reasons.

    I was only making a point about when such reviews are in the hands of believers, not so much to gain the sort of insight you indicate, but in order to, well, “buy a church,” so to speak.

  4. todd says:

    Yes, good point

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