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Best of Both Worlds?

I don’t remember how I got on the Saddleback Church mailing list, but was fascinated with the following email and its implications. Obviously megachurches are showing substantial growth and there probably is at least one in your metropolitan area. I know there is a prominent one which seems to attract Asian Americans where I live. It’s a place that offers a number of resources without, how shall I say this, the baggage of an immigrant church or the growing pains of a second generation church. Is this the future? While we debate and hack it out, are many just opting out? Multi-ethnic and ethnic under one roof, now that’s the best of both worlds, isn’t it? Is it? Asian American churches– are we too small in our vision? Or can we unearth the diamonds in our rough?

January 21, 2007

Re: Saddleback Vision at Korean Connection!

Come and meet other Saddleback folks who share an interest in the Korean culture on January 28, 2007 at 3:00 p.m. in Room 405, As Pastor Rick Warren has said, the face of Saddleback Church is changing. And our International Small Group team is part of that change. ALL are welcome to come and hear an exciting vision on how God is working in and through the Saddleback Korean small groups and community to show HIS love and reach others for Christ.

If you have any questions or want more information, please contact at (562) 555-5555 , [email address].

We look forward to seeing you on January 28th!

“Therefore, go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you.” Matthew 28:19-20

Serving Christ together,

Saddleback Church


P.S. There will also be a video presentation of a P.E.A.C.E trip to Rwanda by one of our Korean Small Groups!


About David Park

Christian 2nd-generation Korean American; Atlanta Georgia; more details to come.

6 responses to “Best of Both Worlds?

  1. while there is plenty of room for all styles of churches, this being based out of the “international” small groups team says to me that it is not Asian-American in focus, but Asia or Immignrat focused . . . or, they don’t know the difference. Hmmmmmmm.

  2. Josh

    interesting. can’t say I have any right to speculate anything, but I look forward to cool things coming out of that. keep us posted!

  3. Bruce, there’s a mention that there will be a presentation by a Korean small group. That means there are ethnic specific small groups under the banner of a multi-ethnic megachurch. Pretty soon, they’re going to have a PA Announcement for a cleanup in the Thai section.

    Joking aside, I think it is a high time for Asian American churches to sharpen our vision, both immigrant and Next generation.

  4. djchuang

    I don’t think it’s only a matter of vision, as I’m beginning to see a (slowly) growing number of next generAsian churches that (allegedly) have a vision to reach all peoples, like Jesus said to do in Matthew 28. But it takes a lot more to reach all peoples in the neighboring community than to hang out a sign saying everyone is welcome. Those next steps are what I find sorely missing among many (sincere) efforts.

  5. Good point DJ, although I was thinking in the direction that megachurches with ethnic-specific small groups would be incredibly attractive to those of the next generation, which could be potentially an enormous threat to ethnic-specific churches. It’s the Wal-Mart metaphor for the megachurch where specialty stores (i.e. ethnic-specific) will need to do a better job of differentiating their product in the face of an extremely attractive and affordable diversity of products.

  6. djchuang

    Well, there are some people who do like the big box stores with systematic personalization and customization, and there are some people who like the mom-and-pop stores that have personal service and customization. The world is big enough for both.

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