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  • P-ISSN0023-3900
  • E-ISSN2733-9343

The New Face of Large Congregations: Creative Innovations in Four Megachurches in the Seoul Metropolitan Area

Korea Journal, (P)0023-3900; (E)2733-9343
2017, v.57 no.4, pp.14-41
https://doi.org/10.25024/kj.2017.57.4.14

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Abstract

Seoul is currently the megachurch capital of the world, though with stagnating attendees. The stagnation is mainly due to mounting criticisms surrounding the inordinate amount of wealth possessed by the megachurches. Hence, the author decided to study four reputable megachurches in Seoul that are still thriving as stable congregations, while defying increasing accusations. About 743 survey questionnaires were collected and analyzed from these four megachurches. The results show that these churches came up with innovative ways that highlight their pure intentions in deepening their relationship with God by: (1) better understanding God’s words (expository preaching based on Biblical literalism); (2) selflessly praying to God for others’ health (healing ministry through intercessory prayers); (3) fulfilling God’s message of promulgating the Gospel (slimming of the congregation while denying admission to switching members); and (4) striving to renounce worldly possessions and the desire for power (owning no church property and limiting the tenure for senior minister and elders). Their creative dedication to service reveals their purpose of pursuing God’s kingdom and realizing his righteousness in the world, thusly proving that megachurches are not in fact merely corporate businesses or interest groups, but vital organizations that are capable of carrying out God’s command on a grand scale.

keywords
megachurch innovation spirituality tithing religious market expository preaching religious switching Biblical literalism

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