Did someone amend the meaning of church? Tell me…Who displaced the peace and sanity of the church? This is a question that I’ve posed for long, but the burdens of multitasking and various chores hadn’t given me that ample time. Finally, we can talk about the issue. Nowadays, the church is based on fundraising, egoistic leaders, and rivalries. Leadership wrangles are setting the church on fire. Church leaders have selfish ambitions and they have supporters just like state leaders.
There was a time when someone was murdered because he supported a clergy who was alleged to have committed atrocities and was now being expelled by a bishop. This evidently shows tables have turned, with pastors taking the place of Jesus Christ in the lives of the congregation. Pastors are now measuring their might in accordance with the number of people in the congregations. Some of them, when people leave the churches where they minister, they invent doctrinal principles to prevent the exodus. The problem is so deep that their actions even shouldn’t be questioned. One lady I interacted with once pointed out the error, “It’s incredible how one can question the pastor’s actions,” she said.
There was a couple who were planning to start a business, but their pastor refused the idea, saying it couldn’t be set up unless the church said so. They went ahead and started the business, but church leaders insisted the business wouldn’t flourish. The family was alienated by church members as a result.
Another issue is the elitism attitude, which plays to the narrative “Us” versus “Them”, “Their church” against “Ours”, where churches are embroiled in a supremacy battle. At a certain congregation I had visited, a guest pastor was preaching and the man who was seated next to me alluded to the fact that he wasn’t preaching like their established pastor. Then during lunch break, I got into a heated conversation, and another man said, concerning their choir, “I can comfortably boast that there is no choir like ours.” Another one said, “It’s like all the choirs here today went for lunch.”
Dear brethren, what we should remember is that churches shouldn’t promote rivalries. They should be Jesus-centred, provide peace and coherence, support spiritual renewal in every community, and that Baptists are just as vital as Charismatics.