Research Notes


Of Culture or Against Culture? A Dilemma for Congregations

A perennial question over the past three decades, especially among Protestant denominations, is whether some congregations have become transactional and instrumental versus transformational and relational. The framing is intentionally provocative. Much traditional religious practice in America resists elements of secular culture that elevate individualism, consumerism, and competition—traits we usually consider transactional or instrumental. Sometimes this…

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