Trending Faith: What is Church Supposed to Look Like?

A large worship service at a church

In this week’s episode of Trending Faith, Dean of Students and Pastor Tim Griffin and Dean of the College of Theology Jason Hiles, PhD, sat down to discuss what church is supposed to look like.

Pastor Griffin notes scriptures which lay out a loose blueprint for how churches should look at gatherings, prayer, study and breaking bread together, which have been major components of the church experience for centuries. With it came the belief from every church that they, individually, were doing it “the right way.”

As time moved on, churches became larger and these huge gatherings made it increasingly difficult to build interpersonal relationships. Many churches began offering smaller group experiences to help build relationships between members and cultivate niche or special interest groups within these larger congregations to help supplement the basic tenets of a big church experience.

Pastor Tim explained, “When there are thousands of people in the room and they hear one person speaking or a handful of people singing, then you have very much a theater experience with performers on a stage and people responding to that.

“Is that bad? Not necessarily, but can some of the basic elements of the Christian experience get lost? Yes, they can. But they can also be lost in small church life, too; being petty, divided or isolated from the rest of the world that I think God would expect from us as His people when we’re in community together.”

Those elements along with what Pastor Griffin notes as a huge, somewhat mysterious emphasis on music in today’s worship, require church leadership to focus on the basic experiences: serving others, helping others and praying for others. Those concepts are sometimes different between large churches and small churches, but should remain a commonality in all churches.

Listen to their complete discussion below:

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If you would like the chance to hear your questions answered, email them to or use #trendingfaith.


The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author’s and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Grand Canyon University. Any sources cited were accurate as of the publish date.