Niche churches are starting up across the country to satisfy the needs of worshippers who aren’t happy in a traditional setting. Here are some of the more interesting variants we’ve recently heard about:
Mighty Oak Christian Fellowship: This service-oriented church focuses on raking and removing leaves for elderly homeowners every fall and delivering garden compost in the spring. It’s a God-centered “circle-of-life” church. The “Big Three” evangelistic outreaches—Christmas, Easter, and Arbor Day.
Second Amendment Church of Christ: Don’t miss the weekly potluck dinner (“bring a critter to share”) and midweek target practice.
Supreme Bean Christian Church: There are 23.2 baristas per 100 in average weekly worship attendance (highest among our churches, according to Kent Fillinger).
Man’s Best Friend Christian Community: Dogs are welcome (of course). There is concern the church teaches a form of universalism; its website, under BELIEFS, states, “All dogs go to Heaven.”
King James Church of Christ: One Lord, one faith, one baptism, one church, one book, one translation.
“Crying in the Chapel” Fellowship: A Las Vegas church featuring Elvis impersonators who lead a weekly song service of some of the King’s best gospel numbers. (Late word: After meeting for just five weeks, breakaway Elvis impersonators started “Take My Hand, Precious Lord” Church, believing it to be more seeker-sensitive.)
Handyman Church of Christ: Nearly every member serves on the House Committee. (This church is surprisingly popular with single mothers and widows.)
Family Tree Christian Church: If you’re not a member of the Smith family, you should stay away.
Answers in Acts Church of Christ: If it’s not in Acts, you’re asking the wrong question.
“Madam, I’m Adam” Fellowship: This church sought to attract those appreciative of sophisticated wordplay but has since become popular with singles.
Time Will Tell Christian Church: This laid-back gathering lays out its beliefs but refrains from arguing. Members promise never to say “I told you so” in this life or the next.
Devil Take the Hindmost Fellowship: A church for people who enjoy running on Sunday mornings. A short devotional is offered before each run. On the monthly “devil” runs, the last-place person is eliminated (“ensnared by the devil”) after every lap around the church property. Church slogan: “Be Fast; Don’t Be Last.”
Craft Beer Church: Meets only on Friday and Saturday nights (but most members come to both). Is considering adding a Thursday-night service.
C&E Christian Church: This twice-yearly gathering (“Christmas & Easter”) caters to three groups: nominal Christians, people who fear commitment, and folks who suffer from ecclesiophobia.
Christian Standard is just kidding.