Top 50 Most Influential Churches in USA

In USA: “The 2005 survey was sent to 2,000 church leaders with the goal of ranking the nation’s fastest growing churches and churches with more than 2,000 weekend attendance.” (oops . . here is the link – thanks scotty)

Great to see some emerging church pastors there (Mark Driscoll, Rob Bell, Erwin McManus – congrats you guys!!!!!!!) and good to see our older, bigger brothers at the top – Rick Warren and Bill Hybels, both superstars and men who have been leading the way for many years. Good to see other pastors i have met over the years – Larry Osborn is a great guy. Jeff Jones. And others.

No mention of house church movements or organic churches close to the ground because only churches bigger than 2000 made it to the list. When I am in USA, i usually try to hook up with the house churches and churches off the map. But I sometimes end up at many of these churches also.

Andrew

Andrew Jones has been blogging since 1997. He is based in San Francisco with his two daughters but also travels the globe to find compelling stories of early stage entrepreneurs changing their world. Sometimes he talks in the third person. Sometimes he even talks to himself and has been heard uttering the name “Precious” :-)

9 Comments

  • Just finished a paper on church growth – and even comments like yours (sorry !) irk.
    why is big better?
    Lorna// who is grouchy and hates writing papers at the best of time. In the summer hols it’s even worse 🙁
    PS those of you who are struggling to impact your community, don’t give up!

  • …and not a single woman leading a church in the top 50! Not amazing, but quite depressing.

  • You mentioned Driscoll’s church under Emerging Churches. Are you aware that they don’t place themselves neatly into that category? Driscoll’s book ‘Radical Reformission’ devotes an entire section to the worthlessness of embracing post-modernism as a Church.

  • Hi Hooser
    none of us place ourselves or our ministries neatly into that category (or any category) since there is so much confusion and beadth of definition.
    driscoll has been a friend for nearly a decade and i have enjoyed my times up in Seattle with him and Mars Hill. They are a church ministering among the emerging culture and inside the emerging culture and are growing with emerging culture people. Which is what most emerging churches are attempting to do – be a missional expression of God’s body in an emerging culture context.
    His book is good, isnt it?

  • THROUGHOUT THE WORLD TODAY AMERICA IS LEADING IN EVANGELISM WHETHER THROUGH THE INTERNET OR EVEN ON CABLE T.V LIKE TRINITY T.V. GREAT TO HEAR THAT SOME CHURCHES DO HAVE UP TO 2000 MEMBERS ON WEEKENDS IN THEIR CONGREGATION. ONE BELIEVES THAT LIKE OLD DISCIPLES AMERICAN EVANGELISTS SHOULD BLAZE THE TRAIL BY SPREADING THE GOSPEL TO THE NOOKS AND CRANNIES OF THE WORLD WHERE PEOPLE DON’T KNOW CHRIST. EVEN IN THE SUPPOSEDLY EVANGELISED COUNTRIES LIKE NIGERIA WHERE I HAVE MY CHURCH MOST OF OUR MODERN DAY PASTORS KNOWN IN AMERICA ARE BASED IN URBAN AREA. THE PEOPLE IN THE RURAL AREAS STILL PRACTICE PAGANISM. I CAME TO REALISE THIS AND I ESTABLISHED MY CHURCH IN A VILLAGE THAT IS ABOUT 50 KILOMETRES TO THE CENTE OF THE CITY WITH NO POTABLE WATER OR ELECTRICITY. THE HOLY SPIRIT DIRECTED US THERE IN OCTOBER 2004 AND THE CHURCH HAS GROWN FROM 4 WORSHIPPERS TO 250 NOW AT WEEKENDS. LET THE AMERICANS ESTABLISH BRANCHES IN THIS FORGONE AREAS AND THIS WILL HELP IN SPREADING EVANGELISM.

  • Check out the source of this list:
    Rising Evangelical Star Jason Christy Leaves Trail of Fraud, Associates Say
    By Hannah Elliott
    SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. Aug. 1 /ABP/ — When young, charismatic Christian publisher Jason Christy was tapped two years ago to lead the powerful Christian Coalition, the group’s leaders praised him for his ability “to inspire and encourage people of faith to action.” But Christy’s business dealings — both before and after his one-month affiliation with the Coalition — instead have inspired former customers and co-workers to file lawsuits charging Christy with defrauding their Christian businesses.
    Christy, 36, who apparently had no previous public-policy experience, persuaded the Christian Coalition in 2005 to place him in one of the most visible and powerful positions in evangelical life. But before the coalition’s leaders officially turned over the reins of their 1.2 million-member national lobbying group, they learned of a trail of legal and financial problems that has followed Christy from coast to coast.
    Former associates and customers of Christy’s many business ventures — mostly Christian magazines — say he cheated them out of money and threatened them. At least 10 of them have filed lawsuits, Associated Baptist Press has learned, and others have gotten court-issued restraining or protection orders against the Scottsdale, Ariz., businessman.
    Christy says all the allegations are false. He and his supporters say “enemies” are spreading lies about him because of soured business relationships. But critics say Christy is a scam artist preying on trusting Christians.
    Christy now publishes The Church Report, supposedly a conservative, national print magazine and web site. He has appeared as an analyst on CNN and spoken at megachurches like Robert Schuller’s Crystal Cathedral. He hob-nobs with some of the evangelical elite and still has relationships with leaders in highly respected positions, like the Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability.
    This article is continued at Associated Baptist Press News: http://www.abpnews.com/2685.article
    Also at The Baptist Standard: http://www.baptiststandard.com/postnuke/index.php?module=htmlpages&func=display&pid=6646 and
    Christianity Today: http://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/2007/augustweb-only/131-35.0.html

  • Do the math.
    Mega churches donut do it.
    Jesus showed the way, pastored 12 men for 3 years. Raised them up to be servants of God and fishers of men.
    11 solid men in three years doing the same over 30 years results in double the estimated population of the world by 2037
    Be busy building God’s kingdom not your own, make disciples, invest in peoples lives what God has invested in you.
    Ox

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