Weekly Reflection

This week in class we discussed religious organizations, typology, and trends in American religion. Within Christianity there are different polities. These power structures and hierarchies range from being run by elected and elevated officials to simply a group of people following someone. As noted in class, there is a similarity between the religions(Christianity, Judaism, Islam, and Hinduism) in which once they migrate and settle in America, the polity becomes congregational. The term that is used to described with polity is autonomous, or self governing. The churches, temples, and mosques no longer belong to an outside governing power. I think this is interesting because it is somewhat mimicking the “American dream.” Thry are becoming separate to do the best for each individual organization; this is something only seen in America.

McGuire presented her own religious typology. The chart which we saw in class describes where each organization or sect can fit. Throughout time these can shift and change. Some more traditional denominations have become more lenient. Other trends that have appeared in America is the increase in spiritual, but not religious and a decrease in the Bible being literal. These trends continue to appear despite their source. It makes me wonder if we will see a rise in religion after this period of decreasing religion. Throughout history this has happened before, such as the first and second Religious Awakening.  It is intersting, however, to learn America is more religious than other countries. Maybe it is only the Western European countries that we have talked about, but I still think it is surprising.