Today we wrapped up our congregation presentations and were asked the follow up question of: what did you learn about congregational life in Redlands?
Many of us discussed how Redlands is primarily Christian based off of the congregations we visited that were listed. We found out that this is because Redlands used to be a “Southern” town that used to be very conservative. But as time passes and the demographics of the area change, we can also see just how much the churches within this new space are changing as well. The churches here have become less conservative but remain just as white unless you visit a church in the outskirts of Redlands or in a different town surrounding Redlands. Furthermore, we heard across the room that members of the churches here in Redlands are well of age or are in the ages where they’re settling and have families. From the church I visited as well as other churches in the area I have gone to before, it seems as though there is very little youth in many of the congregations which is quite interesting and I think speaks upon the kind of population that lives here. We also discussed how many of the churches are a congregational structure which generated a conversation about how America’s free market economy enables one to make and establish a church which provides people with different spaces for them to fall into. Having diversity of churches means there is something for everyone which fosters a community within that space, thus creating a congregation.