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By Robert Wuthnow

Within the 12 months 2000--and beyond--what will the church be like? What demanding situations will it face? Will the church be ready to supply a powerful experience of group? Will or not it's a moral strength within the lives of usa citizens? And what position will faith play in politics and available to buy? In Christianity within the twenty first Century Robert Wuthnow displays on those provocative questions as he seeks to spot alterations which are happening now in American society that church buildings needs to tackle in the event that they are to stay important sooner or later. He foresees 5 serious areas--institutional, moral, doctrinal, political, and cultural--in which significant demanding situations will come up, then meets the thorny concerns head-on. How will church buildings' source bases, their very identification, and their ability to hold on their religious traditions be altered? until they proceed to operate as resources of worrying in a needy international? What influence will the resurgence of fundamentalism have, and the way will average and liberal congregations react? How will the political actions of church buildings effect their skill to be heard within the public area, and what's going to the effect be of pluralism and the present materialism of our society? Drawing on quite a lot of first-hand observations and study, Wuthnow demontrates that during every one of those 5 parts humans of religion have robust purposes to go into the subsequent century with self belief of their non secular associations. yet he additionally highlights worrisome symptoms, and issues to express parts that must be addressed to make sure the continued power for Christianity in America--not least between those are the rampant individualism that erodes non secular groups and the non secular infighting that diminishes the Christian experience of cohesion. The onset of a brand new millennium presents a ancient chance to take inventory of the current state of affairs and to plot for the future--in the years forward, a lot mirrored image is probably going to take place approximately all our significant associations. Christianity within the twenty first Century goals to give a contribution to these reflections through providing a sobering, real looking, and finally hopeful review of the place the church is now, and the place the church is headed.

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Th e congregation , therefore , remains at th e heart o f the churc h and, i n turn, a t the hear t of Christianity. Bu t can the congregation continu e adequatel y to sustai n community ? Wha t exactl y will i t b e abl e t o do ? Wil l i t continu e t o functio n muc h a s i t doe s a t present? O r wil l corrosive force s i n th e wide r societ y undermin e it s ability t o functio n a t all ? These , a s I suggeste d broadl y i n th e las t chapter , are among th e most pressing questions facin g the church.

Aging bab y boomers retirin g in Florid a an d Sout h Carolin a will necessitate ne w churche s in those areas . Increasingly, the nation' s byway s are also likel y to b e dotted with mosque s an d temple s a s immigrants arriv e from othe r part s of the world . The Challeng e o f Diversity In man y respect s th e cultura l environmen t o f Frederick , Kansas , seems simple compare d wit h Durkheim' s France . Frederic k Baptist , however , faced one challenge that Durkheim's analysi s never quite envisioned.

2 Can the Churc h Sustain Community? The churc h o f th e twenty-firs t century, lik e tha t o f previou s centuries , will probabl y remai n vibran t a s lon g a s i t ca n provid e peopl e wit h a strong sens e of community. Th e congregation , therefore , remains at th e heart o f the churc h and, i n turn, a t the hear t of Christianity. Bu t can the congregation continu e adequatel y to sustai n community ? Wha t exactl y will i t b e abl e t o do ? Wil l i t continu e t o functio n muc h a s i t doe s a t present?

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