Thursday, June 28, 2007


Megachurches: Some Personal Reflections

I was told that at some point in the 1970s we at Blackburn Baptist Church (Melbourne) were one of three 'Megachurch Congregations' in Australia. The other two were AOG Pentecostal – at Mt. Gravatt in Queensland (Reg Klimionok, senior pastor) and Paradise in Adelaide (Andrew Evans). Others in the 1980's and 1990s outgrew those three churches (including Crossway, the new name for the Blackburn Baptist Church, with up to 4,000 attending weekly).

Two definitions: 'Megachurch' for our purposes was 1,000+ attending worship services each week. (Many church consultants, following Lyle Schaller, tend put the figure at 700+; I'm told by Phil Baker that there are 259 Australian churches seeing 500+ attending each week). And a 'congregation' happens when more than 50% of Sunday or weekly attenders are part of a small study/prayer/ministry group: we had more than 60 small study/prayer groups and up to 30 ministry groups, with over 70% of Sunday attenders involved. 'Aggregations', as I use the term, describe churches where the majority of Sunday/weekly attenders are not in a small group: Australia has had several Catholic and Protestant 'megachurch aggregations' in the last 150 years.

More here. Australian Megachurchwatch.

Rowland Croucher

May 2007

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