From the Amazon.com website for The Megachurch and the Mainline: Remaking Religious Tradition in the Twenty-First Century:
Religious traditions provide the stories and rituals that define the
core values of church members. Yet modern life in America can make
those customs seem undesirable, even impractical. As a result, many
congregations refashion church traditions so they may remain powerful
and salient. How do these transformations occur? How do clergy and
worshipers negotiate which aspects should be preserved or discarded?
Focusing on the innovations of several mainline Protestant churches in the San Francisco Bay Area, Stephen Ellingson’s The Megachurch and the Mainline
provides new understandings of the transformation of spiritual
traditions. For Ellingson, these particular congregations typify a new
type of Lutheranism—one which combines the evangelical approaches that
are embodied in the growing legion of megachurches with American
society’s emphasis on pragmatism and consumerism. Here Ellingson
provides vivid descriptions of congregations as they sacrifice hymns in
favor of rock music and scrap traditional white robes and stoles for
Hawaiian shirts, while also making readers aware of the long history of
similar attempts to Americanize the Lutheran tradition.
This is an important examination of a religion in flux—one that speaks to the growing popularity of evangelicalism in America.
Looks like a worthy read . . .