The megachurches that adopt the industrial complex format tend to have a celebrity pastor who surrounds himself with elders tasked with seeing to his needs and protecting him to the point of creating a buffer between him and the church body. The danger of creating a circle of yes men arises when the pastor hand picks the elders and dictates their job descriptions within the elders’ meetings. The congregation participates in the functional degradation by rubber-stamping congregational votes without question. The greater the pastor’s power, the higher becomes the risk of spiritual abuse.
“Does this cultural metamorphosis lead to narcissistic church leaders? Does celebrity status in the church corrupt the original purpose of service to God’s kingdom? Does an online click replace the value of a personal touch from the pastor to the congregants? Does the reward of church family and fellowship take second place to the number of sermons downloaded? Does the devoted believer become a free labor participant in the growth of the industrial model? Is spiritual abuse involved in these types of churches?” (Taylor, Joy S., A View from the Pews — The Inside Story of a Broken Church, 2022, Lily of the Valley Publishing, Santa Claus IN, p.47.)
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