Friday, November 23, 2007
One hundred years after the Azusa Street Revival stunned Los Angeles and changed Western Christianity, Pentecostalism has become the fastest growing religious movement in the world. However, many Pentecostal denominations in the United States are in a slow decline. Will Pentecostalism survive in North American in the twenty-first century? If so, what forms will it take? The Future of Pentecostalism in the United States brings together leading scholars of charismatic and Pentecostal Christianity to discuss and forecast these issues. The book looks at American Pentecostalism from a variety of disciplinary perspectives including sociology, theology, history, and the arts. The book also considers various traditions and sub-movements within U.S. Pentecostalism, such as African American Pentecostal and charismatic Latino churches, urban postmodern charismatic congregations, and the role of Pentecostal institutions of higher education.
I wrote my chapter about 3 years ago and had to update it before publication. I was asked to contribute something on the future of the COG in the U.S. The title, "The Almost Pentecostal", was given to me by Steve Land, based on Wesley's sermon "The Almost Christian". I raise the question are we "almost Pentecostal" and answer it by examining three areas: Doctrine (Holiness), Mission, and Polity (Internationalization, Women).
Other contributors include Frank Macchia, Margaret Poloma, David Daniels, and Arlene Sanchez Walsh.