SEMINARY REPORT ASSERTS COVID HAS HELPED TURN CHURCHES INTO SOCIAL SERVICE CENTERS.

ED STETZER’S RESEARCH PALS AT INTERFAITH HARTFORD SEMINARY ARE BOASTING OF VICTORY. AFTER YEARS OF WARNING ABOUT FAITH BASED PARTNERSHIPS, THE SOCIAL JUSTICE AND CRITICAL THEORIES INVASION OF CONSERVATIVE EVANGELICALISM THE DECEPTIVE END GAME IS NOW IN VIEW ACCORDING TO NEW REPORT.

Rev Thomas Littleton

12/24/2021

Corrupt evangelical leaders like Rick, Warren, Ed Stetzer, Tim Keller and Albert Mohler have been playing a long game to warp the theology and teachings of the church. from the seminaries to the Sunday school classes of toddlers the twisted vision toward a justice and equity driven mission has been packaged and sold in place of the Gospel. No one can say they were not warned that the end game for Globalist and “Equity” planners for the church was to steal its Gospel and eternal focus and replace it with a false vision of providing social services , health care, food and disaster distribution, refugee care, and now Covid 19 “response”.

Far left , interfaith Religion News Service reported on the new study by the wacky “interreligious ” Hartford Seminary- saying :

“More than half of Christian congregations say they have started a new ministry or expanded an existing outreach during the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a new survey.”

“On average, in fact, these Christian houses of worship began or broadened more than three of their outreach activities in response to the pandemic.”

“The level of new and intensified social outreach and community ministry undertaken by the nation’s churches is monumental,” reads the report by the Hartford Institute for Religion Research.”

“Overall, almost three-quarters (74%) of churches have offered social support during the pandemic and close to two-thirds of congregations say they have been involved in new ministries.

“The new findings, a November survey drawn from 820 responses from representatives of 38 Christian denominational groups, showed significant changes in congregations’ attitudes toward change, particularly increasing diversity.”

ACCORDING TO THE REPORT OMICRON VARIENT OPENS UP EVEN BROADER OPPORTUNITY

“With the emergence of the “omicron” variant and rising infection rates across the United States, the pandemic is not over. After nearly two years of navigating public health guidelines, Zoom church, and intense socio-political conflict, it is becoming increasingly clear that congregational life is not what it once was. As daunting as that statement may be for religious leaders and laity alike, it speaks to the resilience, creativity, and convictions of congregations in the United States.”

” Change is never easy. But change allows religious communities to better address the needs of their local communities in times of suffering and hardship. And congregations have done just that throughout the pandemic. The level of new and intensified social outreach and community ministry undertaken by the nation’s churches is monumental.
This report, based on data from the second key-informant survey of the Exploring the Pandemic Impact on Congregations: Innovation Amidst and Beyond Covid-19 project, includes an over-sampling of eight denominational groups and a random sampling of congregations in other denominations for a total of 38 Christian denominational groups and 820 responses. This online survey was fielded throughout the month of November 2021 and the resulting dataset was weighted to improve its national representativeness (see methodology section below).”

THE REPORT

“CONGREGATIONAL RESPONSE TO THE PANDEMIC:
EXTRAORDINARY SOCIAL OUTREACH IN A TIME OF CRISIS”

Some would think this report is very encouraging and that ministries have taken advantage of the chance to serve during the pandemic . But one need look no further than Hartford interfaith Seminary and it’s leadership like Scott Thumma, a close research partner with long time Lifeway Research former head Ed Stetzer to know the trends they are promoting and tracking and not Gospel driven or healthy pursuits of the church.

HARTFORD SEMINARY VISION AND NEW NAME

Hartford International logo

International University for Religion and Peace.

“As a pioneering, interreligious, international theological university, Hartford International has helped thousands of people find peace within, and many thousands more find peace with each other. At Hartford International, we use interfaith dialogue and discovery to deepen our beliefs, respect our differences, and find ourselves and love for each other.”

“Hartford International University for Religion and Peace is a dynamic learning environment, a place of higher education that is second to none. At HIU we take the word “for” in our name seriously. It is an action word. We believe that religion and peace are not only intertwined but dependent upon each other.”

HARTFORD IS FULL ON INTERRELIGIOUS ,DIVERSITY ,EQUITY AND INCLUSION

“I invite you to look around our website, viewing our course offerings, degrees, and our many programs. We have a distinct focus on Jewish, Christian, and Islamic Studies and research, always with an eye toward interreligious understanding and dialogue. You’ll also notice that we are blazing new paths in Executive and Professional Education, helping our world see how religious identity is not loosely connected but fundamental to meaningful discussions on diversity, equity, and inclusion. Our consulting and professional trainings are leading the way to bridge this important gap in society.”

This project is funded by Lilly Endowment Inc. and conducted by the Hartford Institute for Religion Research at Hartford International University.

HARTFORD SEMINARY STUDY IS FUNDED BY THE LILLY ENDOWMENT WHICH HAS HELPED HARTFORD EVEN LAUNCH A COVID RELIGION RESEARCH WEBSITE

“About This Study:”
“The Exploring the Pandemic Impact on Congregations study is generously funded by Lilly Endowment Inc. and led by the Hartford Institute for Religion Research at Hartford International University for Religion and Peace (formerly Hartford Seminary). We will continue to release targeted analyses of more specific findings from our topical surveys breaking down how Mainline/Evangelical, multiracial, Black congregations, Latinx congregations, and churches of differing sizes are navigating the pandemic. Sign up to receive our newsletter at http://www.covidreligionresearch.org and like and follow us on Facebook and Twitter to make sure you receive our reports as soon as they are released.”

A centralized hub in the making.

Exploring the Pandemic Impact on Congregations: Innovation Amidst and Beyond COVID-19 is a five-year research project funded by Lilly Endowment Inc. and led by the Hartford Institute for Religion Research. The focus of this expansive initiative is to research, collect, and disseminate data about the possible changes and long-term implications the pandemic might have on religious life across the United States. Through this centralized online hub, congregational and denominational leaders, religious scholars, and the general public will have free access to a growing repository of curated resources, practical tools, and guidance—drawn from our own research and from our cross-denominational partners.”

HATFORD SEMINARY RUNS “FAITH COMMUNITIES TODAY” WHICH IN 2020 PUT FOR THIS REPORT ON-“Twenty Years of Congregational Change

Twenty Years of Congregational Change

Summary

Twenty Years of Congregational Change: The 2020 Faith Communities Today Overview summarizes the findings of the largest national survey of congregations ever conducted in the U.S. It captures a pre- and early pandemic picture of America’s faith communities and affirms many of the trends evident over the past few decades, while also highlighting some distinct areas of change. This report is published by Faith Communities Today, a multireligious and collaborative research initiative that has been tracking trends in the U.S. religious landscape since 2000.”

National survey research

“This national survey component draws upon the Institute’s Faith Communities Today (FACT) collaborative initiative of over 20 different denominational research groups. It includes a number of different survey approaches spread across the five years of the grant. 

Subscribe to our newsletter (form at the bottom of this page) and follow us on social media to be alerted when new research findings are available.”

Pre-COVID Baseline Portrait of Congregations

“This pre-COVID picture is gathered from the FACT 2020 survey:”

HARTFORD SEMIANRY LEADER AND ED STETZER RESEARCH PARTNER IS BEHIND THE EFFORT TO REDIRECT CHURCHES VISION TOWARD COVID RESPONSE VIA AGENDA DRIVEN “RESEARCH”.

Project Staff”

We’re a team of congregational researchers, sociologists of religion, and collaborative project leaders at an Institute with over 40 years of experience conducting research designed to help congregations flourish by providing data to support informed decision making. Our project staff, based out of the Hartford Institute for Religion Research at Hartford International University, work in tandem with a diverse group of scholars of religion who serve as advisors and consultants, leading organizations engaged in similar research, and a wide range of denominational research offices nationally. As a strategic and collaborative venture, we are committed to understanding how congregations have creatively responded to and navigated the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as how these changes may impact the religious landscape of the U.S. for years to come.”

Dr. Scott Thumma

Principal Investigator

READ BIO

“Scott Thumma serves as the Principal Investigator of this project. He is Professor of Sociology of Religion at Hartford International University for Religion and Peace and the Director of the Hartford Institute for Religion Research. He is the co-chair of the Faith Communities Today project and on the steering committee of the US Religious Census, as well as research advisor for several other projects and organizations. Throughout his 30-year career he has participated in many congregational study projects and national religion research efforts. He has written widely on the subject of megachurches, gay religious life, congregational dynamics, and nondenominational churches and has published three books [Gay Religion, Beyond Megachurch Myths, and The Other Eighty PercentTurning Your Church’s Spectators into Active Disciples], many research reports, and managed over a half-dozen websites.”

Thumma has a long history promoting media driven “Church Growth” trends with Southern Baptist, Wheaton Billy Graham Center head Ed Stetzer .

Thumma was also instrumental in work promoting the “negotiation Gay Evangleical Identity since the 1980s in the book “Gay Religion which took on the same task across the board among all major faiths.

GAY RELIGION AND THUMMA/ HARTFORD SEMINARYS PAST WORK

“Conflicts over homosexuality and gay rights threaten to break apart denominations, if not North American society. These heated theological and political debates have, as well, obscured the fact that many gays and lesbians are religiously active individuals. Gay Religion is the first book to give a straightforward presentation of the spiritual lives, practices and expressions of gays, lesbians, bisexuals, and transgender. Drawing from a wide range of religious traditions, new and established scholars explore the range of gay religious expression in denominations, sects, and even outside recognized religious institutions. The essays ask what these religious innovations mean to the continually evolving religious environment of North America. With its helpful section introductions and an appendix providing profiles of organizations involved, Gay Religion is a unique and compelling resource for anyone interested in homosexuality and American religion.”

THUMMAS CHAPTER IN GAY RELIGION WHICH HE EDITED

“Negotiating a Religious Identity: The Case of the Gay Evangelical”

Scott Thumma

“This article examines the process by which persons reconstruct their Evangelical religious identity to include the formerly incongruent homosexual identity. Members of one conservative gay Christian organization, called Good News, are profiled in the way they come to desire, construct, and solidify a gay Evangelical identity. Through a process of socialization, they renegotiate the boundaries and definitions of their religious identity to include a positive valuation of homosexuality. This accommodated, but still distinctively Evangelical, identity enables persons to resolve the dissonance between their Christian beliefs and their homosexual feelings. The case study explores how a religious identity is accommodated to incorporate incompatible aspects of the self. It provides an interesting glimpse at religious socialization outside of radical conversion. This somewhat unique example offers a look at how individuals and groups are involved in negotiating religious identities in a modern world.”

THUMMA AND BAPTIST / LIFEWAY/ WHEATON’S ED STETZER

Ed Stetzer, Leadership Network operative in the Christian Press steadily Scott Thumma Mega Church /Church Growth hype and his work with Leadnets Dave Travis with heavy hitters like Rick Warren .

Beyond Megachurch Myths: What We Can Learn from America’s Largest Churches Hardcover – Illustrated, August 10, 2007

by Scott Thumma (Author), Dave Travis (Author), Rick Warren (Foreword)

STETZER ON WARRENS “PASTROS.COM”

February 22, 2013

Debunking Megachurch Myths: Especially the One About Sheep-Swapping

By Ed Stetzer

“So this week inadvertently turned into Megachurch Week on the blog. In the event you missed it, everything started Tuesday with some data on the continued growth of megachurches. Then on Wednesday, I shared a new infographic from Leadership Network on the financial health of megachurches.”

REALITIES TO TO CONSIDER

A Report promoting the Churches new role in social services advanced by the Covid 19 Pandemic is not something to be taken as a trend tracking investigation when it is conducted by a leading interreligious seminary and its congregational change agents think tank arms. The efforts have massive outside funding as well as subscribe to UN /NGO Global Goals and interreligious, multi-faith interfaith universalism. NO such effort is interested in the Gospel mission and focus of the church. Instead most are determined to undermine and destroy it.

Stetzer and Leadership Network are famous for tracking their own trends as a means to promote them.

The organizations in this movement are all interconnected in the push for a new paradigm church which, now aided by the Pandemic Response and billions in grant funding is fully enveloped in working as a third leg partner with the government and big business in the Faith Based Partnerships model of the Obama and now Biden era.

The organizations:

Leadership Network

Rick Warrens Purpose Driven Brand and PEACE Plan

Wheaton’s Humanitarian Disaster Institute

Along with Hartford/ Thummas groups :

Hartford Institute for Religion Research: Exploring the Pandemic Impact on Congregations

Faith Communities Today

Many many more like Covid Collaborative , the Ad Council , National Association of Evangelicals – ALL are working to USE THE PANDEMIC RESPONSE to fast forward and advance the effort to redefine the church vision and purpose toward “Equity” Inclusion, Justice, disaster response, immigration /refugee care and being THE GO To partner for the Pandemic Industrial Complex.

CONCLUSION

The VERY organizations and people responsible for the seduction of the church – even entire denominations into the Church Growth Movement, Global Goals Christianity, The Emergent Theological errors and the Faith Based Partnerships with massive outside funding flooding the Household of Faith – are now seeing the Covid 19 virus and response as the perfect means to their long game goals of a new paradigm justice driven church with an interreligious cooperation leaving it stripped of its power in the Holy Spirit, and darkened to its real vision labor like a blinded Samson on the grist mill of social services and care of society.

Even Blinded believers can have a day of redemption and arise to do God’s will.

Judges 16:

21 “Then the Philistines took him and [d]put out his eyes, and brought him down to Gaza. They bound him with bronze fetters, and he became a grinder in the prison. 22 However, the hair of his head began to grow again after it had been shaven.”

Samson Dies with the Philistines

23 “Now the lords of the Philistines gathered together to offer a great sacrifice to Dagon their god, and to rejoice. And they said:

“Our god has delivered into our hands
Samson our enemy!”

24 When the people saw him, they praised their god; for they said:

“Our god has delivered into our hands our enemy,
The destroyer of our land,
And the one who multiplied our dead.”

25 So it happened, when their hearts were merry, that they said, “Call for Samson, that he may perform for us.” So they called for Samson from the prison, and he performed for them. And they stationed him between the pillars. 26 Then Samson said to the lad who held him by the hand, “Let me feel the pillars which support the temple, so that I can lean on them.” 27 Now the temple was full of men and women. All the lords of the Philistines were there—about three thousand men and women on the roof watching while Samson performed.

28 Then Samson called to the Lord, saying, “O Lord God, remember me, I pray! Strengthen me, I pray, just this once, O God, that I may with one blow take vengeance on the Philistines for my two eyes!” 29 And Samson took hold of the two middle pillars which supported the temple, and he braced himself against them, one on his right and the other on his left. 30 Then Samson said, “Let me die with the Philistines!” And he pushed with all his might, and the temple fell on the lords and all the people who were in it. So the dead that he killed at his death were more than he had killed in his life.”

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