I came across this CNN opinion piece from 2012 entitled “Spiritual But Not Religious Is a Cop Out”:
and I find it remarkable (as in “worth remarking on”) how this author can bash both those who are looking beyond a formal institutional church practice for a better understanding of our place, purpose, and meaning while at the same time bashing the mega church phenomenon as mere “networking.” What these two emergent trends have in common is an exploration of other ways to study, learn, and experience the concept of “God” — one happening within the church context and one completely outside the institution of church.
Is it necessary to throw shade on a movement just because it differs from your traditional pursuit of “serious religious study?” Are the doctrines, practices, rules, and observations of a formal institution necessarily better because they are “handed down to us?”
Culture evolves, as life evolves, and the old institutions that served us well for a few centuries ARE being abandoned/replaced by something different, something we cannot yet fully understand. This is a fact. Whether you like it or not, whether you think it is a “cop out” or not, it is something that is happening, a phenomenon that is well underway, an organic upwelling “movement” that is not going to stop just because church adherents whine about it.
So get over it. If you don’t like that young and old are leaving your cherished institution then examine this: your hand-me-down church is a dinosaur. It will go extinct, as do all things which can’t adapt to rapid change. Evolve or die.