parachurch groups and home churches

Subj: CAC Digest # 03
Date: 96-08-22 01:58:20 EDT
From: TSTseng

Covering Aug. 19-21, 1996

Dear CACers:

Has anyone read the lengthy article in the current _Atlantic
Monthly_ about mega-churches? I can email it to you by request
only since it is so long (I don’t want to clog up your email
accounts any more than necessary).

For those of you who filled out the survey, thanks!

Tim Tseng

Subj: Re: Chinese Protestant Women in American Paper Proposal
Date: Tue, Aug 20, 1996 7:52 EDT
From: (Jeanette S.G. Yep)

Hi Tim!

Rev. James Tan, the founding pastor of BCEC has written a book
about the church –in both Chinese and English. I have an extra
copy. I’d be happy to give it to you. Would you like me to mail
it to you or will it be soon enough for you to receive it in
October? (It’s a bit like hagiography, but I know you’ll know
how to wade through it!)


Subj: Re: Helen Lee article
Date: Tue, Aug 20, 1996 3:35* EDT
From: aalumkal@phoenix.Princeton.EDU (Antony W. Alumkal)
To: (Ken Fong)

> Well, Mr. Princeton, I see your point.

Please, I prefer to go by “Mr. Berkeley exiled in Princeton but
hoping to return.” šŸ™‚

> Many of the AA college students
> I’ve spoken with in the last five years are in a dilemma.
Being in AACF
> or IVCF, etc., has truly gotten them more serious about their
life of
> faith. However, most of them state that they are very
pessimistic about
> returning to their home churches–they don’t ‘fit’ there
anymore. We
> need more forward-looking/thinking churches that reflect the
outlook of
> these motivated young adult believers.

While I would not deny there could be differences in motivation
level, it seems to me the major difference between AA young
adults from parachurches and members of their home churches could
be cultural. From what I remember at Berkeley IVCF, the word
“Christian” was often used in place of “American evangelical”
(eg. Christian music, Christian publishers, etc.). As Randall
Balmer argued so well in _Mine Eyes Have Seen the Glory_,
American evangelicalism is a cultural system, some might even say
an “ethnic” group. By participating in groups like IVCF and CCC,
at least some AA Christians my begin to define Christianity more
narrowly in American evangelical terms–“Christians” are people
who know the Four Spiritual Laws, have scheduled “quiet times,”
etc. Their home churches may not be able to live up to these

Just a hunch. If I’m completely off base, let me know.

Tony Alumkal