Handbook of Denominations in the United States

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Overview

A helpful resource for clergy, laity, journalists, and researchers, this authoritative guidebook to U.S. religions is grouped in family categories of Abrahamic religions, arranged chronologically: Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. The information for each group within these families has been provided by the religious organizations themselves and focuses on the denominations' doctrines, statistics, and histories.
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Overview

A helpful resource for clergy, laity, journalists, and researchers, this authoritative guidebook to U.S. religions is grouped in family categories of Abrahamic religions, arranged chronologically: Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. The information for each group within these families has been provided by the religious organizations themselves and focuses on the denominations' doctrines, statistics, and histories.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781426700484
  • Publisher: Abingdon Press
  • Publication date: 10/1/2010
  • Edition number: 13
  • Pages: 432
  • Sales rank: 466,438
  • Product dimensions: 5.60 (w) x 8.50 (h) x 1.40 (d)

Meet the Author

Also atwoodcd@wfu.edu
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Handbook of Denominations in the United States


By Craig D. Atwood, Frank S. Mead, Samuel S. Hill

Abingdon Press

Copyright © 2010 Abingdon Press
All rights reserved.
ISBN: 978-1-4267-0048-4



CHAPTER 1

JUDAISM


Judaism is one of the oldest religions of the world. All Western religions trace their origins in some way to Judaism. Today there are about twelve million Jews in the world, half of whom live in the United States. Judaism can refer to both a religion and an ethnicity, and there are, of course, disagreements among Jews as to what truly makes a person Jewish—whether it is a matter of birth, cultural heritage, or religious observance.

Unlike Christianity, which is generally defined in terms of doctrines and beliefs, Judaism as a religion is defined primarily by rituals and ethics. Put briefly, Jews understand themselves as the people to whom God gave the commandments to observe as their obligation to God. By following God's instructions, the Chosen People in turn become a blessing to the entire world as they help to establish God's realm of justice and peace (shalom).

History. Jews trace their heritage back to the patriarch Abraham, who answered the call of God and left his home in Mesopotamia to seek a promised land beyond the Jordan River. According to tradition, Abraham's grandson was Jacob, whose name was changed to Israel after he wrestled with an angel. The twelve sons of Jacob/Israel became the fathers of the twelve tribes of ancient Israel.

The defining event for the Israelites and their descendents was the Exodus. After many years serving as slaves to Pharaoh in Egypt, a prophet named Moses was called by God to lead the people to freedom. Moses parted the waters of the Red Sea (or the Sea of Reeds) and led the people to Mt. Sinai. There he established a priesthood and gave instructions on how they should live. Israel's obligations to God became known as the Torah ("Law" or "Instruction"). Torah is the centerpiece of all forms of Judaism down to the present day.

Around 1000 BCE, the second king of Israel, David, established a strong and prosperous centralized government with a standing army and efficient bureaucracy. He captured the Canaanite city of Jerusalem and made it the capital of his realm. Despite his personal flaws and failings, David was heralded as the perfect king, God's own son. Prophets and priests alike proclaimed that God had made a special covenant with the house of David so that there would always be a son of David on the throne in Jerusalem. Jewish kings were known as the Lord's Anointed, which in Hebrew is Messiah. David's son Solomon expanded the kingdom and built a large central temple in Jerusalem. Jerusalem was proclaimed to be the holy city, the dwelling place of God. Centuries after the destruction of the Temple, Jerusalem is still viewed as the holy city by most Jews, and the Temple Mount is the most holy land in the Holy Land.

After Solomon's death, there was a rebellion against the Davidic kings, and the kingdom divided into two unequal parts. The smaller southern kingdom of Judah consisted primarily of the tribe of Judah, and its capital city was Jerusalem, where the descendents of David ruled until the sixth century BCE. The words Judaism and Jew come from "Judah." The northern kingdom was known as Israel, and its capital was Samaria. In the early eighth century this kingdom was destroyed by the Assyrians. The people were dispersed, never to reunite. From that time on, the southern kingdom assumed the heritage of Israel. Around 587 BCE the kingdom of Judah was conquered by the Babylonians. The temple was destroyed and thousands of citizens were taken into captivity. During the forty years of exile, the prophets, priests, scribes, and scholars began the process of codifying the writings that became the sacred Scripture.

Eventually the Jews were allowed to return to the land of the patriarchs and they built a nation under Persian and later Greek control. There was no longer a king; instead the high priest served as the chief administrator of Judea. In the second century BCE their Hellenistic overlord, the Syrian Emperor Antiochus IV, tried to crush the Jews and their religion in order to make them more subservient to his rule. Copies of the Torah (the scrolls of the first five books of the Bible) were burned, Jews were forbidden to circumcise their boy babies (the physical sign that one is in the covenant), and the Temple was desecrated by the sacrifice of an unclean animal to a pagan deity. Rather than crush the spirit of the Jews, these measures led to open revolt. This revolt of the Maccabbees on behalf of the right of Jews to observe the commandments of God is commemorated each year at Hanukkah.

Within a hundred years of the revolt against foreign domination, though, Judea fell into Roman hands. At the time of Jesus, it was administered by a Roman governor. Rebellion again broke out in 66 CE, but this time, the Jews were defeated. Jerusalem and the Temple were destroyed in 70. By that time, there were Jewish communities throughout the Roman and Persian worlds, and they grew in importance when the heart of Judaism was destroyed. The Diaspora, or scattering, of the Jews was facilitated by the development of a mobile form of religion that was based in the family and small community. In diaspora Judaism, it takes only ten men to form an assembly and conduct worship. Even without a synagogue, Judaism can be observed in the home, in secret if need be.

As Christianity emerged as the religion of the Roman Empire, anti-Semitism grew in the Empire. But with the rise of Islam, which has many affinities to Judaism, Jews were met with a measure of toleration in the new Islamic Empire. Jews often had positions of great power and influence, particularly in the learned professions, such as medicine. Jews in the Islamic world generally spoke Arabic or other local languages and even translated the Torah into Arabic. They assimilated outwardly while maintaining Jewish observance and theology. These Jews of the Mediterranean basin would eventually be called Sephardic, from the Hebrew word for "Spain." Spain had a thriving Jewish community until Isabella and Ferdinand consolidated their rule over the Iberian Peninsula. In 1492, the year Columbus sailed west, the Jews were forced to leave Spain or face the wrath of the Spanish Inquisition. Many Sephardic Jews made their way to the New World, settling in Brazil, New York, and Rhode Island.

Jews in the Christian kingdoms of the West had a more tenuous existence than did those in Islamic lands. During the struggle to define Christianity as separate from Judaism in the patristic period, much anti-Semitism found its way into Christian theology and practice. Throughout the Middle Ages, Jewish communities were subject to harassment by Christian mobs. In the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries, Jews were expelled from England and France. Many made their way eastward into the sparsely settled lands of Germany, Poland, Hungary, and Russia. There they established separate communities, often building entire farming villages, where they could observe the Torah in relative peace. These Jews became known as Ashkenazi, from the Hebrew word for "Germany," and they developed a unique German dialect known as Yiddish, which is written in Hebrew letters. The Ashkenazi were generally less sophisticated and secular than the Sephardim.

Persecution of the Ashkenazi Jews in Eastern Europe began in earnest in the nineteenth century, and thousands immigrated to the United States. Soon anti-Semitism increased in Germany and throughout Central Europe. Hatred of Jews reached a fever pitch in the first half of the twentieth century. When the National Socialist (Nazi) Party came to power in Germany through popular elections, violence against Jews increased. Adolf Hitler (1889—1945) and his aides put in place a series of anti-Jewish laws that stripped Jews of their civil rights. Soon, the Nazi regime began shipping Jews to concentration camps, where as many as six million Jews, along with millions of Gypsies, Slavs, and other hated groups, were brutally tortured and murdered. This Shoah, or Holocaust, marked a watershed in Jewish history that continues to affect Judaism in profound ways. Never before had the threatened destruction of the Jewish people been so close to fulfillment. Perhaps half of the world's Jewish population died during the Nazi era.

The founding of the State of Israel in 1948 was connected with the horrors of the Holocaust. Since the nineteenth century, when many peoples of Europe had agitated for their own nations, there had been calls for a Jewish nation. This Zionist, or Jewish nationalist, movement was led by Theodor Herzl (1860—1904), who laid the groundwork upon which the Jewish homeland would be erected. Initially a rather small movement among secularized Jews, many of whom had socialist convictions, Zionism grew in power as Jews learned the truth about the Holocaust. A Jewish state free from Gentile control seemed to be the best solution to Jewish survival. In the 1960s and 1970s, religious Jews became firm supporters of the Jewish state as well; and many people perceived a link between the future of Israel as a nation and the establishment of the long-hoped for messianic age. In the last quarter of the twentieth century there was a growing fundamentalist movement focused on Zionist goals.

Jews in the United States. Sephardic Jews arrived early in American history. During the colonial period synagogues were established in New Amsterdam (1654), Newport, Savannah, Charleston, and Philadelphia (1730s and 40s); however, the first official rabbi did not arrive until the middle of the nineteenth century.

President George Washington was able to assure a delegation of Jewish leaders that the new Constitution of the United States guaranteed freedom of worship and conscience to all people, not just Christians. Because of this guarantee of freedom from persecution, America gradually became a second "promised land" for world Jewry. In the nineteenth century, some Jews embraced American culture so completely that they redefined Judaism in terms familiar to liberal Protestants. Hebrew was dropped, except in special services, the rules of ritual observance were relaxed, and organs were added to synagogues. Some synagogues even began worshiping on Sunday rather than on the Sabbath. Other Jews rejected this assimilation to the Protestant American mainstream and retained traditional elements of worship and observance.

The massive influx of Eastern European Jews, the Ashkenazi, profoundly affected the American Jewish community. Millions of immigrants settled in the major northern cities, creating large Jewish neighborhoods where they could maintain much of their Old World identity in the midst of industrial America. There were about half a million Jews in the United States in 1900. By 1940 there were over four million, and they made a significant impact on American popular culture. The Ashkenazi tended to be more conservative than the Sephardic Jews who had lived in the United States for decades. Many of the most famous American entertainers came out of this Yiddish culture, with its distinctive foods and traditions. By the end of the twentieth century, Judaism was so well established in American society that an observant Jew, Joseph Lieberman, could be nominated for vice president in 2000.

While the local synagogue is very important to Jewish life in the United States, there are hundreds of Jewish organizations that help to define and defend Judaism. They range from those focused on Jewish rights to youth societies. There are some two hundred periodicals and newspapers and two news syndicates dedicated to Judaism. The American Jewish Committee is organized to protect the civil and religious rights of Jews around the world. It seeks equality in economic, social, and educational opportunities and gives aid and counsel in cases of intolerance and persecution.

Jewish institutions of higher learning, affiliated with the various movements, serve the community nationwide, not only by training rabbis, but also providing general Jewish learning for all interested people. The most important are (Orthodox) Rabbi Isaac Elchanan Theological Seminary of Yeshiva University in New York City; (Reform) Hebrew Union College—Jewish Institute of Religion in New York, Cincinnati, Los Angeles, and Jerusalem; (Conservative) Jewish Theological Seminary in New York City; and Reconstructionist Rabbinical College in Philadelphia. Yeshiva University in New York City is the only Jewish college that awards a B.A. degree; Brandeis University in Waltham, Massachusetts, is the only nonsectarian Jewish sponsored college or university in the United States.

Theology and Practice. Rabbinic Judaism was the only form of Judaism to survive ancient times and the destruction of the Temple. It actually developed at the same time that Christianity was being formed. In fact, in the first century, Christianity was simply one of many forms of non-rabbinic Judaism. By the sixth century, the two religions had developed the basic structures, theology, and practices that define each to the present.

Judaism as a religion is based on the Hebrew Scriptures (for Christians, the Old Testament), but it is distinct from the form of religion described in those texts. The ancient religion of the Israelites focused on cultic observances, particularly animal sacrifice, and revelation given by prophets. Priests were in charge of seeing that cultic rites were properly performed and that ritual purity was maintained. Prophets served social and religious functions as well. They were men (and occasionally women) through whom God spoke, especially in judgment. Prophets challenged the leaders of society, even the king, to live by the ethical demands of the covenant. Justice for the poor, the outcast, and the oppressed was a major theme of the prophetic judgment.

Over time, scribes codified the pronouncements of the prophets and the laws of the priesthood, producing an enormous body of legal and ethical material that has profoundly shaped Western society. However, many of the laws and instructions contained in the scriptures clearly reflect the world of an ancient agricultural people. First the priests and later the rabbis helped people understand and apply the Torah in radically different historical and social contexts.

Rabbinic Judaism grew out of the Pharisee movement. The Pharisees in the first century CE were a Jewish party that controlled most of the synagogues in and around Palestine. They differed from the priests and other Jews by their strict interpretation of the demands of the Torah: It should be observed as faithfully as humanly possible. To make observance of the Torah easier, the Pharisees taught, Jews should keep themselves separate from Gentiles, especially at meals, when it would be hard to observe dietary restrictions. Marriage to Gentiles was also forbidden. The Pharisees deemphasized Temple observances and the sacrifice of animals and focused on the demands of the Torah in day-to-day living. Justice, not sacrifice, was what God demands, the prophet Micah had said, and the Pharisees agreed. For the rabbis, prayer and study of Torah served the religious needs that the priests had once met.

One of the key concepts of rabbinic Judaism is that there are two Torahs. The written Torah was given to Moses and is contained in the scrolls of Moses (Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy). These writings were revealed by God through the prophetic lawgiver, but the written Torah can be very confusing and difficult to observe unless you live in a small agricultural society. Here is where the second Torah of the rabbis comes in. This is the oral Torah, which was also communicated to Moses by God on Mt. Sinai. The oral Torah is the key to understanding Scripture and to applying the teachings of Scripture to one's daily life. The written Torah says to observe the Sabbath and keep it holy. The oral Torah tells you how to do this. According to tradition, this oral Torah was passed down by a succession of prophets and scribes, such as Ezra.

After the destruction of the Temple, though, it became necessary to codify and clarify this oral tradition and preserve it in written form. This culminated in the production of the Talmud around 600 CE. The Talmud is one of the masterpieces of world literature and intellectual history. It contains the debates of the rabbis on questions of biblical interpretation and how to understand and apply the Torah. There are, in fact, two Talmuds, one produced in Babylon by the descendents of Jews who had not returned to Israel, and one produced in Palestine centuries after the destruction of the Temple.

The Talmud has two main parts, one of which, the Haggadah, deals with biblical interpretation, customs, legends, and edifying stories. The other part concerns Halakah, the rules of the covenant with God. Halakah involves the traditional 613 commandments that Jews are to obey and practice in their daily lives. This can be difficult as the world changes, so the Talmud also provides guidelines for interpreting Halakah. This process of interpretation, adaptation, and even disagreement over the meaning of Torah is the thread that runs through the history of Judaism.


(Continues...)

Excerpted from Handbook of Denominations in the United States by Craig D. Atwood, Frank S. Mead, Samuel S. Hill. Copyright © 2010 Abingdon Press. Excerpted by permission of Abingdon Press.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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Table of Contents

Alphabetical Table of Religious Groups 1

Preface 9

Religion in America Craig D. Atwood Atwood, Craig D. 15

The Abrahamic Traditions 25

Judaism 29

Orthodox Union 36

Lubavitcher Community (Hasidic Judaism) 37

Union for Reform Judaism 38

United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism 39

Jewish Reconstructionist Federation 40

Jewish Fundamentalism 41

Messianic Jewish Alliance of America 42

Christianity 43

Orthodox and Oriental Orthodox Churches 46

African Orthodox Church 51

Albanian Orthodox Archdiocese in America 51

American Carpatho-Russian Orthodox Church 52

Antiochian Orthodox Christian Archdiocese of North America 53

Apostolic Catholic Assyrian Church of the East, North American Diocese 54

Apostolic Episcopal Church 55

Armeninan Apostolic Church of America 56

Armenian Church, Diocese of America 56

Bulgarian Eastern Orthodox Church 57

Coptic Orthodox Church 58

Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America 60

Holy Eastern Orthodox Catholic and Apostolic Church in North America 61

Malankara Orthodox Syrian Church 61

Mar Thoma Orthodox Syrian Church (Indian Orthodox) 61

Orthodox Church in America (Russian Orthodox) 62

Romanian Orthodox Episcopate of America 65

Serbian Orthodox Church 65

Syrian Orthodox Church of Antioch, Archdioceses in the U.S.A. and Canada 67

Ukranian Orthodox Church of the U.S.A. 68

Catholic Churches 69

American Catholic Church in the United States 78

Apostolic Catholic Orthodox Church 79

Eastern Rite Catholic/Uniate Churches 79

Ecumenical Catholic Church USA 80

Ecumenical Catholic Communion 80

Mariavite Old Catholic Church, Province of North America 81

Old Catholic Churches 82

Polish National Catholic Church of America 83

Reformed Catholic Church 84

Roman Catholic Church 85

Society of Saint Pius X 89

Episcopal and Anglican Churches 90

Anglican Communion in North America 93

Continuing Anglican Churches 94

Episocopal Church 96

Evangelical Anglican Church in America 98

International Communion of the Charismatic Episcopal Church 98

Reformed Episcopal Church 99

Lutheran Churches 100

American Association of Lutheran Churches 104

Apostolic Lutheran Church of America 104

Association of Free Lutheran Congregations 105

Church of the Lutheran Brethren of America 105

Church of the Lutheran Confession 106

Evangelical Lutheran Church in America 106

Evangelical Lutheran Synod 108

Latvian Evangelical Lutheran Church in America 108

Lutheran Church- Missouri Synod 109

Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod 110

Reformed, Congregationalist, and Presbyterian Churches 111

American Waldensian Society 117

Asssociate Reformed Presbyterian Church 118

Christian Reformed Church in North America 119

Consercative Congregational Christian Conference 121

Cumberland Presbyterian Church 121

Cumberland Presbyterian Church in America 122

Evangelical Association of Reformed and Congregational Churches 123

Evangelical Presbyterian Church 123

Korean Presbyterian Church in America 124

National Association of Congregational Christian Churches 125

Netherlands Reformed Congregations in North America 126

Orthodox Presbyterian Church 126

Presbyterian Church in America 127

Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) 128

Protestant Reformed Churches in America 129

Reformed Church in America 130

Reformed Presbyterian Church of North America 131

United Church of Christ 131

Mennonite and Anabaptist Churches 133

Beachy Amish Mennonite Churches 135

Church Communities International 136

Church of God in Christ, Mennonite 137

Conservative Mennonite Conference 138

Fellowship of Evangelical Churches 138

Hutterite Brethren 139

Mennonite Church (USA) 140

Missionary Church 141

Old Order Amish Churches 141

Old Order (Wisler) Mennonite Churches 142

U.S. Mennonite Brethren Churches 142

Friends (Quaker) 143

Evangelical Friends International 147

Friends General Conference 148

Friends United Meeting 148

Brethren and Pietist Churches 149

Brethren Church (Ashland) 151

Brethern in Christ Church 152

Church of the Brethren 153

Church of the United Brethren in Christ 154

Evangelical Congregational Church 155

Evangelical Covenant Church 156

Evangelical Free Church of America 157

Fellowship of Grace Brethren Churches 158

Moravian Church (Unitas Fratrum) 158

Old German Baptist Brethren Church 160

Schwenkfelder Church 161

Baptists 161

Alliance of Baptist Churches 167

American Baptist Association 167

American Baptist Churches in the U.S.A. 168

Association of Reformed Baptist Churches of America 170

Baptist General Convention of Texas 171

Conservative Baptist Association of America (CBAmerica) 172

Converge Worldwide 173

Cooperative Baptist Fellowship 174

Duck River (and Kindred) Association of Baptists 175

General Association of General Baptists 175

General Association of Regular Baptist Churches 176

Interstate and Foreign Landmark Missionary Baptist Association 177

National Association of Free Will Baptists 178

National Baptist Convention of America, Inc 179

National Baptist Convention, U.S.A. Inc 180

National Missionary Baptist Convention of America 181

National Primitive Baptist Convention, U.S.A. 181

North American Baptist Conference 182

Old Missionary Baptist Associations 182

Old Regular Baptists 183

Original Free Will Baptist Convention 184

Primitive Baptists 184

Progressive National Baptist Convention, Inc 185

Progressive Primitive Baptists 186

Separate Baptists in Christ 187

Seventh Day Baptist General Conference 188

Southern Baptist Convention 188

Sovereign Grace Baptists 190

United American Free Will Baptist Church 190

Methodist Churches 191

African Methodist Episcopal Church 196

African Methodist Episcopal Zion Church 197

Christian Methodist Episcopal Church 198

Congregational Methodist Church 198

Evangelical Church of North America 199

Evangelical Methodist Church 200

Korean Methodist Church 200

The Salvation Army 201

Southern Methodist Church 203

United Methodist Church 204

Volunteers of America, Inc 206

Native American Christianity 207

Native American Church 211

Holiness Churches 212

Apostolic Christian Churches of America 213

Apostolic Overcoming Holy Church of God, Inc 214

The Christian and Missionary Alliance 215

Church of Christ (Holiness) U.S.A. 215

Church of God (Anderson, Indiana) 216

Church of God (Holiness) 217

Church of the Nazarene 218

Churches of Christ in Christian Union 219

Churches of God, General Conference 220

Free Methodist Church of North America 220

New Apostolic Church of North America 221

Wesleyan Church 222

Christian and Restorationist Churches (Stone-Campbellite Tradition) 223

Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) 225

Independent Christian Churches and Churches of Christ 226

Christian Congregation, Inc 227

Churches of Christ 228

International Churches of Christ 229

Adventist and Sabbatarian (Hebraic) Churches 230

Advent Christian Church General Conference 233

Branch Davidians 234

Christadelphians 235

Church of God (Seventh Day) 236

Church of God and Saints of Christ 236

Church of God General Conference 238

Grace Communion International (Worldwide Church of God) 238

Jehovah's Witnesses 240

Philadelphia Church of God 243

Seventh-Day Adventists 244

United Church of God 246

Unitarians and Universalists 247

American Unitarian Conference 249

Unitarian Universalist Association 250

Pentecostal Churches 251

Apostolic Faith Mission Church of God 253

Apostolic World Christian Fellowship 253

Assemblies of God International 254

Assemblies of the Lord Jesus Christ 255

Bible Way Church of Our Lord Jesus Christ, World Wide, Inc 255

International Fellowship of Christian Assemblies 256

Church of God (Cleveland, Tenn) 257

Church of God in Christ 258

Church of God of Prophecy 259

Church of Our Lord Jesus Christ of the Apostolic Faith, Inc 260

Church of the Living God, Christian Workers for Fellowship 260

Congregational Holiness Church 261

Elim Fellowship 262

Fire-Baptized Holiness Church of God 263

Full Gospel Fellowship of Churches and Ministers, International 263

Independent Assemblies of God, International 264

International Church of the Foursquare Gospel 264

International Pentecostal Holiness Church 266

Open Bible Standard Churches, Inc. 267

Pentecostal Assemblies of the World, Inc 267

Pentecostal Church of God 268

Pentecostal Free Will Baptist Church, Inc 269

United Holy Church of America, Inc 270

United Pentecostal Church International 271

Vineyard Churches International 272

Fundamentalist and Bible Churches 272

American Evangelical Christian Churches 275

Baptist Bible Fellowship International 276

Baptist Missionary Association of America 277

Berean Fundamental Church 278

Bible Fellowship Church 278

Bible Presbyterian Church 279

Bob Jones University 279

Grace Gospel Fellowship 281

Great Commission Churches 281

IFCA International 282

Independent Baptist Fellowship International 283

Independent Fundamentalist Baptist Churches 283

Plymouth Brethren (Christian Brethren) 284

Southwide Baptist Fellowship 285

Thomas Road Baptist Church (Jerry Falwell Ministries) 285

World Baptist Fellowship 287

Community and New Paradigm Churches 289

Congregations with Over 15,000 Members 291

Acts 29 Network 293

Calvary Chapels 293

Communion of Convergence Churches 294

Cowboy Churches 295

Emergent Village 296

International Council of Community Churches 297

Lakewood Church 298

The Potter's House 298

Saddleback Church 299

Southeast Christian Church (Christian) 299

Trinity United Church of Christ 300

Universal Fellowship of the Metropolitan Community Churches 301

Willow Creek Community Church 302

World Changers Ministry 303

Islam 305

Sunni Islam 311

Shi'ite Islam 312

Sufism 314

Wahhabism 315

Islamic Fundamentalism 316

Latter-Day Saints (Mormons) 319

Church of Christ (Temple Lot) 321

Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints 322

Community of Christ 324

Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints 325

Esoteric, Spiritualist, and New Thought Bodies 327

Association of Unity Churches 329

Church of Christ, Scientist (Christian Science) 330

The General Church of the New Jerusalem (Swedenborgian) 332

Gnosticism 333

Liberal Catholic Church International 334

Liberal Catholic Church, Province of the United States 334

National Spiritualist Association of Churches 335

Baha'i Faith 339

Nation of Islam 345

Unification Church 347

Interdenominational Agencies: Working Together in Common Cause Jerod Patterson Patterson, Jerod 349

American Bible Society 352

B'nai B'rith International 354

National Council of Churches in Christ in the USA 355

Inter Varsity Christian Fellowship/USA 356

Church Women United 357

National Association of Evangelicals 358

Americans United for Separation of Church and State 359

World Vision 360

Southern Christian Leadership Conference 362

Sojourners 363

Family Research Council 364

Islamic Society of North America 365

White House Office of Faith-based and Neighborhood Partnerships 366

Appendices 369

Appendix 1 Relationship of Church Bodies to Each Other 371

Appendix 2 Members of the National Association of Evangelicals 375

Appendix 3 Member Communions of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the U.S.A. 377

Appendix 4 Members of Christian Churches Together in the USA 379

Appendix 5 Directory of Denominational Headquarters and Web Sites 381

Index 382

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  • Posted January 20, 2012

    Highly recommended and very informative!

    Very informative and highly organized. It gives a brief history of each US denomination and various statistics. It is gives a great overview of the various churches in existence.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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