Talk:Nondenominational Christianity

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Removing Criticism Section[edit]

The criticism section doesn't have a single source. DOn't get me wrong, I'm not a Joel Olstein fan, I'd even take it a step further and say he's a borderline criminal, but we need a reference there before putting it back up. The lack of education bit seems completely speculative since there would have to be a study showing a greater number of affiliated churches have leaders with seminary degrees than independent ones do. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 70.150.37.124 (talk) 06:08, 11 April 2008 (UTC)

I restored the section, and added some fact tags. I think that the Olstein bit has no risk of libel; it simply says that he doesn't have something which he never claims to have. I agree the section needs much work, but I don't think there is cause to delete it. Tb (talk) 02:36, 14 April 2008 (UTC)

The first paragraph of the 'criticism' section is the worst - it's a (perhaps not completely biased) discussion, but still far too discursive for an encyclopedia - more like a school essay. It must certainly be removed, or at least rewritten. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 41.185.117.174 (talk) 15:54, 8 January 2010 (UTC)

I also advocate removal of the Criticism section. It's sole purpose seems to be as a venue to offer rebuttals to some (not even particularly famous) arguments against some religious points of view. These rebuttals do not have sources and, as such, cannot be claimed to represent a majority of "non-denominational Christians". By being persuasive, rather than informative, the tone of this section doesn't fit with that of the rest of the article. Salbro1 (talk) 22:45, 11 February 2010 (UTC)

Kenilworth Union Church[edit]

It says on the Kenilworth Union Church website that it is the oldest non denominational church in America. But I don't know whether that's a good enough citation.

Given that the founding date listed is long after such major non-denominational efforts as the Restoration Movement, it's certainly at best an unsourced allegation. --Orange Mike 23:04, 29 July 2007 (UTC)

Barna Group[edit]

I added in the url, http://www.barna.org/, and a brief discription of this Research Organization that was referenced in the History section. But when I searched their website for information on megachurches, what I found doesn't quite go with a fact that was cited. http://www.barna.org/FlexPage.aspx?Page=BarnaUpdate&BarnaUpdateID=49, published in March 2000, states that a megachurch is defined to have at least 1000 adults in weekly attendance.

POV[edit]

This article is too Christian-centric - going so far as defining beliefs of typical non-denominational churches solely in terms of non-denominational Christian churches. The article also overlooks the the application of the term to people - which is often another way people self-identify without saying "secular" --JimWae 06:49, 2005 August 13 (UTC)

I did a rename[edit]

I renamed the article "Non-denominational Christianity". I think the article would get too cumbersome talking about non-denominational Muslim, Judaism, etc. New categories including just plain non-denominational can be created.

It's "Islam" and I doubt Jews, Muslim and the obviously to you even more irrelevant 'etc.' would feel that acknowledgement of their existence is 'cumbersome'; besides, ndenominational issues (of a sort) go back even further in Judaism and the nature of Judaism to undergo theological, presentational and philosophical schisms is ancestral to that same tendency in Christianity. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 41.185.117.174 (talk) 15:57, 8 January 2010 (UTC)

What the bible says[edit]

I would not like to say that some person does strictly what the Bible says. That is most likely contested by someone. A true way of saying it in NPOV way is: what they believe the Bible to say. This credits both the sincere belief of these persons and gives the idea that they do not have the absolute authority to interpret Bible. I am quite sure that the Pope tries to do what he believes the biblical way, but I am quite as sure that any Fundamentalist Evangelist from Bible Belt does the same. However, their views may be quite different. It would be fartsy to one of them to give the credit of correct biblical interpretation to the other.

Rewrite[edit]

I just did what amounts to a full rewrite of the entire article. I tried to take all of the relevant points from the original article and keep them in the rewrite, while improving the prose and seperating things into sections. I also believe I've addressed the points for NPOV by making sure that I emphasize that these are all things that people believe, not that they are nessesarily facts. I didn't use the phrase "non-denominational Christianity" throughout, since it's more or less implied by the article title and the occassional other times I use it. It should be clear that this article is focusing on Christianity, and not non-denominationalism in other religions, so I hope that point is cleared up.

By no means is the rewrite perfect. I'd like to learn more about the history of the concept, find some numbers, expand sections, etc. Fieari 19:10, 19 October 2005 (UTC)


I think your question is a legitimate one. "Denominational" stems from the latin "nominare" the act of denominating or naming -- a very important human capacity. As such there is technically no such thing as a "non'denominational" religion or group, school, rite traditon or order within a religion. They all take a name for themsevles, or adopt one that they like that was originally applied to them by others: such as when the Apostles were first called Christian by pagans in Antioch, (cf Acts of the Apostles) --- or even when atheists, secularists, agnostics, deists, etc. take such names to designate themselves and like-minded and like-behaved people.

A more correct name for a non-denominational religious community would be a "non-affiliated" (with any hitherto existing denomination). Invariably, they are founded by one, or a small group, o believers who gather around the charismatic leadership of one, or small group, of leaders with a particular interpretation of tradtion, or else who try to establish an almost wholely new tradition. Whether that one person or group succeed or not in passing on their novel views to succeedeing generations -- or "routinizing their charisma" (as Max Weber called it) -- determines whether a once 'non-denominational" or unaffiliated moves from a "sect", to a non-denominational group, to a new denomination.

Non-denominational Deceptive? Turns out, no.[edit]

The churches which most often refer to themselves as "non-denominational" are simply trying to deceive people into thinking that membership in their organization allows them to act as independent Christians. In fact, nothing of the kind is true. These churches all tend to adhere without question to the secret rapture doctrine and unconditional immortality of the soul espoused by Tim La Haye's "Left Behind" series and Hal Lindsey's "Late, Great Planet Earth." They will not allow reasoned exegesis that differs from these positions, and they will not allow persons who dissent from these positions to exercise leadership in their churches. Therefore they have certain exclusive doctrines in common and whether or not they have a national denominational headquarters, they are effectively administered in their beliefs by the choice of councils, seminars, educational institutions and ostensibly "independent" ministries they support. "Non-denominational" is a misnomer. If a church is truly "non-denominational" then I should be able to belong to any denomination and freely associate and fellowship with the non-denominational church at any level of participation as my denominational background should not matter.

You're correct that a non-denominational Christian church should be welcoming to Christians without regard to denomination, and from my own experience that's generally what one finds. That's not to say that there aren't congregations that fail to meet this test -- I'm sure there are many -- but to make a sweeping characterization of all ND churches as deceitful and rigidly authoritarian based on some bad experiences is, I think, unfair. I myself attended a small ND church in Indiana in my youth, the congregation of which included Methodists, Baptists, Presbyterians, and likely others, any of whom could (and did) serve as deacons or other officers.
Note too that it's reasonable to expect a ND church to have a certain core set of Christian beliefs, since (obviously) the church is Christian, and not Jewish, Muslim, Buddhist, etc. This means that if you want to challenge some of the central Christian tenets (the divinity of Christ, etc.) while within the congregation, you should expect to face opposition. I've found, though, that ND churches tend to have a smaller/simpler set of such beliefs, while denominational ones are more specific and detailed.
Huwmanbeing 17:11, 22 March 2007 (UTC)

Deletion review for Melissa Scott (pastor)[edit]

Interested editors may wish to vote at Wikipedia:Deletion review/Log/2007 March 22. Badagnani 06:48, 22 March 2007 (UTC)

"Non-Denominational" label deceptive? No.[edit]

Aren't Non-Denominationals more Evangelical then Fundelmentalist (Catholic).

Non-Denominational people want to be free and Evangelical is more of a free style church rather then Catholic. So, most Non-Denon churches I see are Evangelical style like the Evangelical Free church.

  • This guy must be a troll. :-) Seriously, Fundamentalism does not mean any single denomination but an attitude. You can be as well a Evangelical fundamentalist as a Catholic. Even Islamic fundamentalist.
Well I don't know about that. I've heard of conservative and even ultra-conservative [Roman] Catholics, but never of evangelical or fundamentalist ones (even though clearly, the RCC has been evangelical throughout most of its history, if evangelical is defined as any Christian church which actively tries to spread itself and gain new members; i.e. operates an outreach program). I think properly speaking, all fundamentalist Christians are from a protestant perspective (even if they are ignorant of or deny the label; as all protestant really means is "non-Catholic Christian"), and that while it is possible & permissible for a Roman Catholic to believe in the Bible literally (creation story & all), they differ from fundamentalists in that they do not accept the Bible as their sole (only) authority, but also rely on the Pope, Vatican, church hierarchy, liturgy, other traditions, etc. The term "fundamentalist" is usually applied to ultra-conservative protestants and Muslims. Shanoman (talk) 08:02, 16 December 2009 (UTC)

Non-denominational ministers[edit]

I beg to differ with the article on non-denominational Christianity. It states "One argument against non-denominationalism claims that the pastor or teacher at such a church often has no theological degree, and can become a leader of the church without any of the theological training that large denominations generally require...." I have spent most of my life attending non-denominational Christian churches both large and small. At each one of these churches the pastors have all graduated from seminary and often have advanced degrees. The teaching pastor at our current church has a doctorate from the seminary where he now teaches. Our senior pastor graduated from a prominent Christian seminary and has been working on his doctorate. We have quite a few other pastors who also graduated from seminary. These are brilliant, well-studied and well-informed people. The article made non-denominational ministers sound like a bunch of ignoramuses, intentionally or not. Christians struggle with enough stereotypes as it is and we don't need another. And by the way, I myself have a BA in Biblical Literature and was listed in Who's Who for American Colleges and Universities back in the day. And I only attend the church and have no leadership position. --Englishartist 06:29, 27 August 2007 (UTC)

Most Non-Denominational churches are evangelical- which, although it may be true and useful, can only be added to the article if someone finds an appropriate source.[edit]

Most non-denominational churches are evangelical--it seems this should be noted somewhere in the article to give a fuller understanding of what is often implied when the phrase "non-denominational" is used of a person or church. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 71.164.236.198 (talk) 22:30, 13 August 2009 (UTC)

Non-denominational Christians are Protestants, right?[edit]

Aren't pretty much all non-denominational churches Protestant, at least in a wider sense? Shouldn't this be mentioned somewhere in the article? -- 77.7.142.4 (talk) 14:09, 9 September 2010 (UTC)

I do not believe it is warranted to make that generalization; the classification has a lot of categories. There are small churches that simply want to retain their independence, a la independent Baptist congregations. Some self-governing churches have networks. Some formed in the wake of splits and controversies. There are also churches that form as an effort to bring Christians from different backgrounds together, and some "mission" churches that form as a result of alliances between missionaries/missions organizations/denominations who want the resulting church to be independent (or perhaps just more effective at reaching out to non-Christians or a different culture that isn't party to these divisions). Then there are some that want to do Christianity from scratch, and start off by rejecting the idea of identifying with any group whatsoever. This is why I'd have trouble with this generalization; it's just too big an umbrella.
Granted, many nondenominational churches are Protestant-flavored (due more to their heritage), but they don't always self-identify that way. In many cases the appeal of nondenominationalism may be a result of the Protestant fragmentation into ever smaller and more specific denominations, and the whole tendency to make distinctions based on those groups. But one of the appeals of the whole thing is being able to reject all group identities and -isms other than that of Jesus, so some do not see the Reformation as an exception to that. In my experience, some nondenominationalists deliberately choose not to have any affiliation whatsoever, including Catholiorthodotestantism.
-- Joren (talk) 15:41, 9 September 2010 (UTC)

Don't have to be critical here, but trolling's fun[edit]

The definition for "non-denominational" is faulty. The explanation is way, way too long to explain CONFUSION. The word "non-denominational" is in fact an oxymoron and automatically "non" cancels out any denominator which equals NON-EXISTENT. Come on people, THIRD GRADE! Whoever thought of the term "non-denominational" HAD to have been a third-grade drop-out, there's just NO SUCH ANIMAL.

Speaking of animals, any animal that is NON-human obviously does not exist. Anything non-human is an oxymoron; automatically, "non" cancels it out and IT DOESN'T EXIST. Wake up, sheeple! Third grade level logic!

LET TRUTH PREVAIL!!! 10:05, 17 January 2011 (UTC) — Preceding unsigned comment added by Wkdemers (talkcontribs)

Proposed NEW definition:[edit]

Non-denominational is the LABEL that people put upon a congregation of believers when they do not want to commit to either A.)Being labeled or B.)Following rules they didn't establish which AUTOMATICALLY MAKES THEM A DENOMINATION. or C.)Becoming the "NOMINATED"


Please, educated people COME FORTH!

10:08, 17 January 2011 (UTC)  — Preceding unsigned comment added by Wkdemers (talkcontribs)  

:D[edit]

Non-denominational Christianity: not associated with or recognized as existing or operating as a denomination. Cause that's what IT IS. :) Thank-you Editors. :) — Preceding unsigned comment added by Wkdemers (talkcontribs) 07:22, 21 January 2011 (UTC)

Non-denominationalism is a Protestant denomination[edit]

I doubt very many Catholics could go into one of those amphitheatres where they meet and not have tomatoes thrown at them, so shouldn't we just call this what it is: "Non-denominational Protestantism"? 66.108.158.14 (talk) 03:36, 29 June 2011 (UTC)

It depends on the amphitheater. Some associate themselves more or less with Reformation Protestantism, some are more or less anti-Catholic. Each of these things is becoming less common the further we get away from the sixteenth century, though. Things have changed since then. Things have changed in the past 100 years. It's only been in the past 30 years that the global population of Independents went from virtually non-existent to the same size as Protestantism as a whole. Yours is one of those generalizations that has an unfavorable half-life type of tendency- it becomes less and less accurate as time goes on, and you've burned a pretty good number of half-lives already. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 70.214.35.189 (talk) 05:32, 17 August 2011 (UTC)

See also section[edit]

I removed the "See also" section because the only article it linked to was Broad church, which is in no way connected to non-denominational Christianity. Broad church is a movement in Anglicanism and most specifically in the Church of England, so I'm not sure how broad church ended up in this article in the first place. — Alex—talk 13:33, 15 August 2011 (UTC)

All of their doctrines and practices are typical Protestant.[edit]

Non-denomination is a lie. 71.212.210.137 (talk) 06:03, 16 October 2011 (UTC)

"Protestant" is not a denomination; so I'm not sure what your point is. --Orange Mike | Talk 13:45, 16 October 2011 (UTC)

But they *are* Protestant in the broadest sense, right?[edit]

Are there any non-denominationl churches that aren't Protestant, at least in a wider sense? Are there any that say "we are definitely not Protestants"?

I think this link to protestantism (again, in a broad sense) should be mentioned in the article if the article is to be honest. -- 77.189.79.224 (talk) 14:52, 6 November 2011 (UTC)

Every doctrine can be categorized. Whether you like it or not. The majority of non-denominational megachurches adhere to typical Protestant tenets: sola scriptura, sola fide, sola gratia, solus Christus, and soli Deo gloria. 184.96.219.51 (talk) 23:21, 14 November 2011 (UTC)

Megachurch pictures only - bias?[edit]

There are three images, all from megachurches. Are megachurches so dominant in non-denominational Christianity that this is justified? -- 77.189.79.224 (talk) 14:55, 6 November 2011 (UTC)

Hyphen?[edit]

The article title has no hyphen, but a hyphen is used several times throughout the article. What is the best or most-accepted form? Whichever is chosen needs to be implemented as the primary means of using the term. A short note at the top of the page saying 'also called xxx' works well. Consistency throughout the article is a good idea.--ɱ (talk) 19:00, 22 November 2012 (UTC)

Since the article title is currently unhyphenated, I've changed all occurrences of the word to unhyphenated, save for the alternative spelling in the lead. I think it makes sense to standardise the spelling in article title and the main body for simplicity; if the title changes (and I think hyphenated is probably the most common and preferable spelling) then the text can be changed back easily. -- Hazhk Talk to me 16:54, 30 December 2012 (UTC)
I agree, and thanks.--ɱ (talk) 20:48, 30 December 2012 (UTC)--ɱ (talk) 20:48, 30 December 2012 (UTC)