When I read this topic I thought I had written it - perhaps I have posted a similar question or just wanted to. I used to go to a very large megachurch (which was a megachurch before it was a multi-site church). I belong to a multi-site church now - my present church is no mega church, but it has two small campuses in a very large town. It made sense for many who moved out to suburban areas to build a campus near them so they wouldn't have to drive so far and so their kids could grow up in a neighborhood youth group. The problem isn't the fragmentation of the church - I think that's how things should happen - form and adapt around communities.Homer wrote: ↑Tue Aug 16, 2022 7:05 pmThe multiple campus church smacks of someone who has an ego problem and/or a desire to control others.
On the other hand the ownership of a meeting place can facilitate the work of the kingdom. The church we attend has a modest assembly room and a few classrooms and also owns an old house adjoining the property where men in recovery ("Celebrate Recovery" program) can live for free. Also Celebrate Recovery uses the church facilities, led by church members.
Long ago when I had to travel for business, visit relatives in another state, or we were on vacation, it was good to be able, on Sunday, to find the location of a church (building) to assemble with the saints. Mennonite, Church of Christ, Baptist, Assembly of God, we always felt welcome. This would be difficult to do if there were only home churches. If not for church buildings, where would the stranger know to go?
Dwight, I sympathize with much of what you wrote but it is difficult to know whether the early Christians could have had dedicated places to assemble while under the tremendous persecution of the time. It seems this is true of Christians today in China, for example. And Paul seems to have headed to the synagogue wherever he went.
The main problem I have is hinted at by Homer. I don't know it's always "ego" or desire to control in all cases since sometimes it's financial efficiency, flexibility and convenience and sharing of corporate structures to avoid duplication, and so forth, but there is a sense in all cases I think that a common pastor or pastoral staff or even just "mission" is so important a satellite church needs to be under their care and guidance. This is very worldly to my mind, though I can see even in some cases where this too could simply be efficiency - a single pastor could easily serve two congregations if teaching and pastoral care is not a full time job.
But, I also have been thinking in many ways this is merely a denomination within a denomination (or even a denomination within a non-denominational church). Nothing more, nothing less - not that it's a good thing or bad thing as such, but I do think that's essentially what a multi-site church is from a practical perspective.