Monday, September 24, 2007

Are CDs--and churches--headed for extinction?

A recent news article asked whether the in-car CD player was headed for extinction.

After all, CD sales are dropping as more and more people download their music.

Predictions of extinction are common, but often they are exaggerated. For instance, when VCRs came out, many predicted that "going to the movies" would end and theaters would go out of business. However, this did not happen. There was a social phenomenon that was missed by the prognosticators--that is, that people like to go out sometimes. They also like to stay in. There is a niche for both.

Probably, the CD will be phased out over time, but it may still have a niche for a long time.

Some people are predicting that traditional churches and megachurches will disappear and be replaced by more communal, smaller churches. Others are saying that in the future, there will not be any formal "churches," only loosely connected individuals who share a common faith. Certainly, younger generations are looking for a more communal expression of church, and this is the trend for the future; however, probably many forms of church will continue to exist for the forseeable future.

Where do you see churches heading in the future--larger, or smaller? Is one form better than another?