House churches are growing in the United States as new church construction reaches its lowest point since 1967.
In Maryland, a house church meets regularly in someone’s living room.
"The Bible says, 'What then shall we say, brothers? When you come together, everyone has a hymn, a word of instruction, or an interpretation' — all of this done for the strength of the church," said Greg Stultz, who leads the house church. "Where is that being done?"
During church, anyone can suggest a song and instead of a sermon, the group discusses anything they’ve been dealing with lately.
At Redemption Church, a group of house churches in Bristol, Pa., Pastor Gary Alloway said he had initially wanted to build a traditional church, but soon realized he needed a new plan.
"I'm not writing a sermon for 12 people,” Alloway told his small congregation. “How about you guys come over to my living room? We'll open a Bible, we'll talk about it, we'll eat together.”
The house church is an idea that is biblical, said L. Michael White, a Christian origins professor in Texas.
"Where do they meet?" White asks. "We do have references in ... the letters of Paul to meeting in someone's home — or, basically, the church in your house."
Publication Date: February 23, 2015
Amanda Casanova is a writer living in Dallas, Texas. She has covered news for ChristianHeadlines.com since 2014. She has also contributed to The Houston Chronicle, U.S. News and World Report and IBelieve.com. She blogs at The Migraine Runner.