The Real Church - The Local Church

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The real church, it seems to me is the local church. It is the visible and identifiable fellowship of Christians who gather together for worship and scatter for witness in a particular community.

What we call the "district church" and the "general church" are somewhat misnomers...

If the district or general "church" is allowed to become an end in itself, a proliferating bureaucracy develops. As a result, the resources of the local church are heavily taxed to support the bureaucracy...

The bureaucracy finally becomes a thing-in-itself-and-for-itself. Constantly increased numbers of people and programs and amounts of money are necessary simply to perpetuate the machinery. Thus the situation becomes directly reversed - the local church exists to serve the district and general "churches" instead of them existing to serve the local churches...

This is not to suggest that the district and general agencies are unimportant or unnecessary. It is simply to say that they must resist the danger of mistaking themselves for the real church...


Extracts from W.E. McCumber - Herald of Holiness, 1 February 1979, p. 18.

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